Try this one thing this Christmas

So it’s finally here. Christmas week. Work winds down. Family life gears up. The merging of the two can be messy. You’re struggling to tie up loose ends at work, whilst the obligatory whirlwind that is choosing presents, endless visits to relatives and decorating the house whips up a storm, both practically and emotionally.

Life gets really busy at this time of the year.

Added to this are the ridiculously high expectations. Everything should be perfect, right? All cinnamon cookies and bonhomie. Well, if our attempt at festive family cheer when putting up the Christmas tree last weekend is anything to go by, it’s not always joy to the world. Our 4 year old was bored within minutes and our eldest berated our middle child for lining all the ball-balls up in a row. To which she responded. The bickering started. Which wound me up (it’s supposed to be joyous). And so it went on...

But, we have a tool in our decoration box that usually (not always) seems to work when tensions between the kids and us are high. I don’t always remember to use it, but when I do I wish we used it more.

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The girls call it Peaceful Time.

Or in other words, meditating with your kids.

Don’t be put off by thoughts of incense, candles and mantras, it can honestly be really powerful and it is really straightforward. Here’s how:

  1. Download one of the many meditation and mindfulness apps. Personally I like Calm, Insight Timer or Headspace.
  2. Search for ‘kids’ within any of these and you will find a meditation for children.
  3. Sit with your kids somewhere relatively quiet (or at least away from where the chaos began).
  4. Play and follow the instructions.
  5. That’s it!

Two things will happen. Either your kids will do it and get really calm or, more often than not, they will get the giggles together. Either of these is a better outcome than the bickering!

Give it a go. And let me know if it works for your gang.

Happy Christmas.

Matt Hall