Mindfulness for mums

I’ve heard a lot about mindfulness practices lately and seen lots of magazine articles recommending mindfulness meditation. I’m wondering if having a daily mindfulness practice could help me handle the stress of being a busy working mum of three with an extra busy life.

calmI don’t have many moments of calm in my days and things seem even more manic than usual recently. We have been spending more time at home than we normally would due to the drizzly and cold weather. Being inside does not sit well with my outdoorsy boys and has upped the tantrum and squabbling levels.

My calendar for November and December has been extra full. There has been a mixture of socialising with friends, Christmas celebrations and less fun stuff like my driving test. I really love Christmas and choose to do lots of Christmas activities with the kids.  Even though we really enjoy them it takes some extra organisation and effort. I think the lack of down time between all the different things going on (fun as they are) is starting to affect me.

There have been a number of times lately when a feeling of being overwhelmed has ambushed me. Feel on edge so frequently can’t be healthy – it’s like I get stuck in fight or flight mode. Small things are making me much more annoyed than they really should. An antivirus warning made me so annoyed this morning I could have smashed my laptop!

I already tell myself to stop and take a breath when things are getting a bit too hectic and find two or three deep breaths does wonders for my ability to cope with life. This has got me wondering if mindfulness could help.

Mindfulness meditation, as far as I understand, can be as simple as taking some time to sit in calm and quiet and focus on your breathing. I’ve decided to try for the next month or so to incorporate 5 to 10 minutes of mindfulness into every day.

I realise there is probably an app that can help me and I’d be very interested if you have any recommendations of what has worked for you. Right now I just want to jump in with trying our mindfulness in its simplest form. I don’t want to add research mindfulness apps to my already lengthy to-do list. I also realise that there is probably a tonne of research that explores if mindfulness works and why but again I’m just going to bypass the science for the moment and just give it a go.

I think having a set sort of time of day to sit and breath will help the practice become a habit. I think this will be quite achievable on days when the boys are at preschool and Sofia is at school. It might be a bit more of a challenge once term ends on Friday. I’m also conscious that 5 minutes might not seem very much. My logic is that doing something small that I can stick to is better than doing something more ambitious that quickly falls by the way side.

I saw a quote on Facebook that said if you have enough time to watch TV you have enough time to meditate – let’s see if switching Strictly for serenity will improve my sanity!

I’ll report back in a follow up post on how my mindfulness experiment is going and pass on any tips that I’ve figured out to make it work. I’d be very interested to know if mindfulness works for you and if you have found a way of making it part of your day to day routine. Please share your experiences in the comments section below.

Wish me luck!

20 thoughts on “Mindfulness for mums

  1. I am a real fan of mindfulness and have been practising it to improve my mental health for some time now. I found it so useful that I did an eight week course in it this time last year. I didn’t manage to do any for months though after the twins were born (can’t imagine why!!) but went to a day long ‘refresher’ practice day about a month ago and have been doing it every day since. I think everyone could benefit from a bit of mindfulness in their lives, especially us busy mums! Someone told me that if you think you don’t have time for mindfulness, then you’re exactly who needs it most.
    A really good app I found as an introduction to mindfulness is called Headspace. You can do ‘Take 10’ for free which is just ten minutes of meditation a day over ten days – then if you like it you can subscribe for more, but the cost is quite reasonable.
    Hope that helps!
    mumof3 recently posted…Things people say about twinsMy Profile

    1. Thank you – it’s encouraging to hear from a fellow mum of 3 that it works for you. I definately need a way to find calm in the daily chaos! I have heard of the Headspace app and will check it out (it could be a post Christmas treat for myself). I agree with your friend I’m always the person who says that I don’t have time to do things because I’m too busy but I can see that my mental health needs a bit of TLC.

  2. Taking time to be still in this manic world is a great way to relieve stress, and its also a good way to help us develop a better relationship with Father God – its no coincidence that our Church verse for the year was ‘Be still and Know that I am God’. You should have a chat with Liz who has done a lot of research into different ways of mindfulness she could give you some pointers to set you on the journey. The only thing that’s difficult is the consciously taking/making time to be still and quiet out of the chaos of our otherwise frenetic lives.

    1. Thanks Diana – I think I need to invest sometime in finding calm. I’m thinking early morning might work well but I’m not the best at getting up earlier than I have to so it might need to be an evening thing. I’ll definately chat to Liz for some pointers.

    1. Thank you – I think finding time and quiet to do this is going to be a challenge (our house is so noisy and there is always something going on) but hopefully I can eek out a regular slot to treat myself to some calm. Love the idea of doing yoga with your kids – my boys love doing the poses on Waybaloo (a kids show that has yoga in it).

    1. I’m hoping it helps me be a bit more chilled out and make me a bit less stressed. I’ll let you know how it goes!

  3. It just seems to be that time of year doesn’t it, when we all want to find a way to feel a bit less stressed in life?! My ‘word of the week’ this week if Focus. Not in a meditation kind of way, just in a unitasking, paying attention kind of way. I want to feel less frazzled and more centered. I’ll be interested to read your follow up post with any recommendations for reducing stress!
    Robyn recently posted…TOMATO PASTA – PICK N MIX RECIPEMy Profile

    1. I have been taught to stop trying to multitask by many burnt cooking incidents when trying to do things at the same time as making dinner. I don’t know if I’m a bit optomistic that a short amount of time trying to be in the moment each day will balance the stress that can come along with having a bit of a crazy life but we’ll see.

    1. Thanks Angela, good to know it works for you I’m only two days in but I’m already enjoying dedicated calm moment. Managed to squeeze it in even though I got up quite late for work.

    1. I’ll report back after Christmas. I’m only on day two, I’m trying to do my meditation first thing in the morning to start the day off in a calm way.

    1. I’ll let you know how it goes. I can’t wait for the end of term and to take a bit of time off work – definitely need some time to relax!

  4. I haven’t tried this before but it could be interesting to see how it goes. I think it is definitely this time of the year. December is very overwhelming because the kids are on holidays, we have the actual festive holidays, the new year etc!! A lot of family and friends gatherings, buying the gifts, wrapping them, etc. It is very stressful. Good luck with the experiment!! 🙂 xx
    A Moment with Franca recently posted…Being part of Miffy MumsMy Profile

    1. I’ll try anything that makes my days a bit calmer! I’ll let you know how I get on and if a manage to stick to it.

  5. I hope you manage to find some time to do this. It’s definitely this time of year as I’m feeling pretty stressed out and behind with everything too! I have so much to do I find it hard to focus! There is a stress management device called The PIP which might be worth looking into though. I’ve used it and I’ve definitely seen a difference. Good luck! x

    1. Thank you Maria, it was going quite well but I’ve been a bit unwell for a couple of days so now I need to get back on track. I’ll have to google the PIP device, sounds intriguing!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge