My intention is to help every individual flourish at their optimum. I help children and young teens manage their emotions, understand their thoughts, soothe their bodies, and find happiness and calm in the moment. I create a safe and welcoming space where we can explore practices to help them feel at their best.
I carry out an initial assessment and include the child or young person in this process (where appropriate). I then continually assess to ensure that sessions are meeting each individual’s changing needs. Each session is bespoke, depending on age, needs, interests and ongoing assessments, but programmes aim to:
- Build a personalised kit of self-care tools based on evidence-based practices.
- Encourage continued practice during the week (mindfulness in daily life).
- Learn ways to be in the moment and find balance and calm.
- Learn to listen to the body and tune in to feelings.
- Discover the breath and how helpful it can be.
- Understand the nature of our thoughts and the busy monkey mind, the nature of worry and find out a little about how our brains work.
- Begin to recognise, allow and soothe our emotions. To find ways to share and talk about them.
- Teach self-kindness practices to support us to be our own best friends throughout life. Develop a sense of inner value and self-worth.
Mindfulness and yoga for children (4-12)
- I write yoga stories unique to a child’s needs. For example, I wrote Cedric the Swimming Pig to show it’s okay to be different and follow your own way.
- I create bespoke yoga sequences for each child to learn and do in their own time, for example for relaxation or for headaches. For older children we can delve more deeply into the benefits of balance and strength poses.
- I also invite creativity and self-expression, encouraging and empowering each child to make up their own breath, poses and sequences.
- We will also spend time exploring mindfulness in age appropriate ways, using our breathing, senses, props, games, stories, visualisations, meditations. mandalas, music, using creative activities – the possibilities are endless!
- We will become comfortable with sharing the emotions visiting us and how this feels in our bodies.
- We will learn how our thoughts, body sensations and emotions are linked to anxiety. I aim to normalise anxiety, to show that it is natural but can also become sticky and leap to our rescue even when we don’t need it.
- I always include self-love and inner worth, exploring what it means to be kind to ourselves and recognising that we are all beautifully unique and belong just as we are.
Mindfulness for teens (13-15)
Young teens will explore their breath and how to be mindful, learn about anxiety and their brain, and explore their inner worth, all in ways that will personally resonate with them.
- Creative work is very valuable when working with teens, for example, making breathing props such as bracelets, designing a journal or creating a canvas. I always work to the child’s interests.
- Journalling and reflecting can be introduced, supporting young teens to explore their situation, understand themselves more and from this find ways they can support themselves in the moment.
- We may also use celebrity examples, such as prominent sports or music personalities, or politicians.
- We can go into the science of brain plasticity a little more and really explore why mindfulness works.
- For teens we can begin to go a little more in-depth in our understanding of thoughts, feelings, body sensations, the stress response and choices we have. I aim to normalise anxiety, to show that is common and natural but can also become sticky and leap to our rescue even when we don’t need it. Over time, we can create many tools to use in the moment.
- We can use more in-depth mindfulness practices and begin to really focus our attention on our breath, body sensations or movement. Meditation can be explored more. We might use games, music, visualisations, videos, books, mandalas, labyrinths, incorporate hobbies. The possibilities are endless!
- All my sessions incorporate self-love and inner worth, exploring what it means to be kind to ourselves and recognising that we are all beautifully un