Why is it that no one ever talks about how hard life can really be? Nothing in childhood could possibly prepare us for the harsh realities that we often create for ourselves with these beautiful, complex, human minds we’ve been blessed with.
The thing is, as a parent, there’s really nothing you can do to keep your children from accumulating their own emotional wounds. Wounds that they will carry with them into adulthood – just as you have in your own life. It happens to all of us, but for some reason, we are not taught how to stand in the painful wounds of our most precious loved ones, or how to love someone without letting our own wounds get in the way. Most of us never even learn the difference between living out of fear and living out of love. Meanwhile, we are told things like, “love heals all” or “love is always the answer,” yet no one shows us how to love ourselves.
Despite all this, you can set your children up for success with one simple thing – yoga.
Support Your Child’s Yoga Practice
Your children’s emotional wounds will be different than yours, so it’ll be up to them to figure out how to let those wounds shape them into the person they want to be. It won’t be easy, but yoga can help.
Start by letting your children know that life is hard. Let them know that the challenges they face are meant to shape them into better, stronger versions of themselves. Tell them that life will shape them in unique ways and challenge them to reach their own kind of perfect; a perfect that couldn’t possibly be like anyone else’s. Then, enroll them in a kid’s yoga class.
Yoga will remind your children that they don’t have to live in the alternate realities that their minds create. It teaches them that they are not their thoughts, and if they start to feel like they are, all they need to do is move their bodies and focus on their breath.
You can reinforce this at home. When they get caught up in their emotions, say: sweet child, go outside, and look out into the distance as far as you can see. Then look a little closer, and a little closer; describe to yourself everything that falls within your line of sight. This is the world, sweet child, and if you choose to stay present with it, you can live in a reality that’s much less painful.
Yoga teaches children to have compassion for themselves. If they can learn to hold compassion for themselves, then they’ll be much better off. They’ll forgive themselves when they make mistakes. They won’t blame themselves when things that are out of their control don’t go right. They’ll have a much healthier mental environment than children who don’t know how to have compassion for themselves.
Plus, yoga can help your children see the difference between living out of fear and living out of love, which is great, because really, there is nothing to fear. Life isn’t about staying ahead or competing with everyone around you. It’s about doing your part to serve the greater good. It’s about recognizing that you are not different from anyone else – that everyone is special but at the same time, no one is. Do not let your children forget this very important lesson.
It’s true what they say, anyway; love really does heal all, and love is always the answer – but you can’t turn to the power of love if you do not know how to love yourself. Yoga can help teach your children to speak kindly to themselves. It can help them to understand that they are a perfect work-in-progress, as is every other living creature in this world.
If you remind them to always take care of their most basic needs and to do things that bring them happiness, yoga will continue to work wonders for them as time goes on.
So, tell your children that life is hard, and that it probably always will be. Then empower them to find success by enrolling them into a kid’s yoga class and reminding them that they have a special power within them – to choose how much or how little they will let their experience with life cause them to suffer