What is Mindfulness for Teens? Can teens benefit from it? These are questions I have been asked countless times over the years. What is Mindfulness for Teens? Is there really something that can help teens develop into more mature, more balanced adults? These are only a few of the questions I get asked all the time from both adults and teenagers.
There are many benefits to developing mindfulness for teens. In this article I will explore what is mindfulness for teens by introducing you to five teen must haves. The mind needs to be fully engaged in every task. When you are fully engaged with what is in your line of work, you tend to pay attention more intently, and you are more able to pay attention to your surroundings.
The next thing I want to introduce you to as you explore what is mindfulness for teens, is reflection. We do not reflect on ourselves constantly, so why expect teens to be any different? If you are asking, “what is mindfulness for teens”, then you need to start practicing mindfulness right now. You can start with just quieting your mind and repeating a thought to yourself while looking at a clock or a phone. Repeat this exercise several times an hour until you are able to quieten your mind and literally think of nothing.
Another example of what is mindfulness for teens, is reflection on your environment. Paying attention to your environment in the same way that you would if you were thinking about what is going on in your world today, would help you to reduce your environmental anxiety and perhaps even lower your stress levels. To do this, try going outside for a few minutes and just observe your surroundings. How does your family’s behavior affect you?
In addition to what is mindfulness for teens, being present is also essential for teens who struggle with sleep disorders. Sleep problems are associated with a host of serious health issues, including anxiety, depression and other emotional problems. Being present in the moment can help you to get to a better sleep state, without worrying about what is happening in the future. While it may be difficult to be fully present at times, try to be more mindful of the present moment while you are trying to get to sleep, and continue with the meditation as you fall asleep.
One last tip for our teens and children aged 3-17 years, is that they need to learn how to reduce their level of stress. Studies have shown that when adults experience high levels of stress, they often have negative physical and mental health effects. Teens and children who are consistently stressed out are at greater risk for poor health outcomes including increased blood pressure, heart attack and stroke. So as you work on becoming more mindful of your behaviors and thoughts, take steps to lower your levels of stress.
A mindfulness activity for teens and children aged 3-17 years can include activities like yoga, tai chi or meditation. If you don’t already incorporate these types of mindful practices into your lifestyle, try to bring some mindfulness activity into your daily routine. When you are mindfulness engaged with your daily routines, you are more likely to notice when you are becoming overwhelmed with worry or anxiety, and you can then recognize that you are experiencing an imbalance in your body and mind. Once you have identified what is triggering your anxiety or imbalance, then you can consciously work to reduce the stress.
For teens and children who struggle with anxiety, depression, and other disorders related to stress and anxiety, there is hope. A recent study showed that the effects of mindfulness could be profound for those who are three times or more during their adolescent years. Through using social media platforms such as Facebook, MySpace and Twitter, mindfulness exercises were shown to reduce social anxiety and increase depressive symptoms in teens, while also decreasing the use of tobacco and alcohol. This type of mindfulness for teens and children has obvious health benefits for the individual, but also provides great potential for curbing addictions to drugs and alcohol as well.