In todays fast paced world, filled with cell phones, computers, gaming devices, ipods and television, it can be difficult for children as well as adults to step away from technology and focus on what truly matters.
Top 5 Fun Activities to promote Zen Living Simply to our Children:
1. Be Fully Present. Being present for our kids is truly a gift to them, as they crave our undivided attention. I turn off my cell phone so our special time is uninterrupted. Especially in todays society, being "busy" is often applauded, and we can find ourselves over-scheduled, maxed out and exhausted. Even if only for a short period of time each day, Stop...and Be fully present for our children...and listen to them.
2. Enjoy Nature Together. Kids see nature with an eye of wonder. How fun it is to share experiences in nature together. I love taking my kids to the beach and watching them run around gathering shells. Enjoying nature together, whether it be a hike on a trail, a walk around the neighborhood, feeding ducks in a pond or a picnic in the backyard, is promoting zen living. Nature is free to us, no purchase necessary. Being in nature is non-consumeristic--- no advertising promoting our kids to want infinitely more "stuff". I want my kids to know that more stuff does not equal happiness.
3. Teach our children meditation. Have fun expanding our kids' knowledge of meditation. There are many websites with free downloads of meditations made just for kids. When I play meditation CDs in our car my children calm down, relax and enjoy the words of affirmations. These nurishing words going into their minds can be transformative, unlike many of the songs on the radio.
4. Plant a garden with our children. I look forward to planting some vegetables with my kids, as this is something we have not yet done. This is a very low cost activity, teaching them to grow some of our own food while spending quality time together in nature.
5. Model Zen Living Simply for our Children. Modeling zen living can be difficult for us parents, working either outside the home or inside the home, rushing to take kids to their activities, taking care of household responsibilities, trying to do too much. Slow down and breathe. Take a time-out from the outside world that promotes busy-ness, working too much and consumerism...and just BE. Remember that we are "human BEings", not "human DOings".