The Effects of Music and Mindfulness on Children's Well-Being
Did you know that music is an incredible way to enhance kids' mindfulness practice? In fact, research has shown that listening to and playing musical instruments can help children manage stress, improve their communication, and enhance their emotional expression. These same benefits have also been seen amongst children who practice mindfulness.
While both music and mindfulness offer incredible therapeutic benefits on their own, when used together they can be even more powerful!
One of the simplest ways to implement music into mindfulness is through mindful listening. Mindful listening is a way of listening without judgment, criticism, or interruption. Children can practice this by listening to a piece of music while paying extra attention to their thoughts, feelings, breathe, and physical responses.
Sounds also make an excellent object of focus for the mind, especially for children who may struggle with inattention. Being able to fixate on the music and the sounds they are hearing helps kids keep their focus while also relaxing their minds and bodies.
Mindful listening is also a great way to help reduce stress and give children a moment to connect with their bodies and breath.
In addition, listening to music can promote mindfulness in children is by increasing their self-awareness. By playing songs that have different tempos, beats, and moods, you can encourage children to notice how their thoughts and emotions change with each tune!
Another way to implement music into mindfulness practice is by having kids engage in mindful movement. This can help to quiet one's mind and encourage a stronger connection to the body. Mindful movement also helps children reset their nervous systems, which can improve their attention and awareness of the present moment.
Mindful movement can come in many different forms, whether it's dancing freely to a song or playing a musical instrument! While children are moving, encourage them to pay close attention to the sounds around them, the way their body is moving, and the thoughts and feelings they are having. By noticing the sensations that are present, children can become more mindful of them.
Next, kids should learn to express these thoughts and feelings appropriately, which may often prove difficult. Music, however, is a great means of outward expression. For example, using a keyboard or a drum, you can ask a child to play what “sad” or “happy” sounds like. Or, you can simply ask them to play the emotion they feel at the moment. This exercise can help children be more mindful of the way they feel from moment to moment.
Because almost all children respond to music, it's a simple and easy way for them to practice mindfulness in everyday life!
Exceptional Mindset Tutors' upcoming Summer Kickoff Concert is the perfect opportunity to practice mindfulness with music! Click here to RSVP for the Facebook Live event.