My wonderful resolution this year that I am still struggling with is to meditate every day.
I have been unabashedly Type A (which I still am) and want to take a moment to clear my mind.
Knowing what a struggle it has been for me to incorporate meditation, I am particularly mindful that I am “prescribing” meditation for my students and maybe even yours.
I am not alone in recommending meditation.
Always on the vanguard, schools in Palo Alto are already teaching meditation as a class and elective (Source). The studies are in:
Aggregated survey results from 18 schools across the country that have participated in the youth program back this up. 76 percent of students reported improved sleep; 84 percent reported improved mood; 83 percent improved focus; and 78 percent reduced anger, frustration, stress and worry.
Researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles, compared students who participated versus those who did not and found that the participants reported less impulsive behavior after the program.
Further research is also underway, including a large study funded by the National Institutes of Health to determine the effects of the program on behavioral and neural markers of emotion regulation as well as sustained attention and resilience to stress.
A Stanford University study is looking at how the program might alleviate symptoms of depression and anxiety among adolescents with eating disorders. (Source)
So what are our tips for meditation? I am by no means an expert (far from it, in fact) but here is a great infographic that we created last year for transcendental mediation:
Here is an absolutely fabulous resource for younger kids to get to sleep (two birds with one stone):
One of my favorite personalities Gabrielle Bernstein has the excellent video teaching meditation to children:
The trick is practice and planting the seed! This seed will blossom later and life and perhaps later this week or year in testing.