Updated: Jan 30, 2021
For the last couple of blog posts we have discussed why we focus on the breath and why we do yoga. To finish out this thought process, I want to take a moment to highlight the key word ‘why’. We know that mindfulness habits are good for us, and we feel better for it, but it's also important to explore and highlight why we are doing something.
If you have taken a yoga class, you might have been asked by the teacher to set an intention. I remember well the first time an intention was mentioned in a class – initially it surprised me and seemed a bit unrealistic to expect something significant from the class. However, I realized over time that an intention does not need to be profound. What might seem like a very small intention is still incredibly worthwhile. If easing the tension in my shoulders or perhaps just having a moment of quiet away from everyday life are why I want to do some yoga, that is enough. If you know why you are doing it, and think about what your intention is, you connect with what matters to you, in that moment. Becoming aware of your intention allows you to apply the appropriate self-care or self-compassion you need from the exercises, bringing you even greater benefit! Intention can be applied in any mindfulness exercise you do, not just in yoga.
Let’s use gratitude journaling as another example. You possibly heard (from us!) that a regular gratitude practice can increase happiness. Before you begin, try to remind yourself of the joy you are trying to invoke by writing a gratitude list. Let that intention seep in a little. Feel the difference. Ask your kids, without judgment, what they want to or expect to get out of the activity or session. Help them develop their own connection to the idea of an intention so that they too can feel the benefits.
As you explore myKinCloud and discover what you enjoy and learn from the different mindfulness activities, keep checking in with yourself why you are doing the practices. Set your intention. It doesn’t have to be anything complex, and it is more realistic to keep it simple. See what happens as a result!