Mindfulness Exercises For Kids & Families

Search From 2,000 Free Mindfulness Exercises

Bring more mindfulness to parenting, kids and family life with our free mindfulness exercises, guided meditations, mindfulness worksheets and more. 

Mindfulness exercise

Karma and the End of Karma

Guy talks about Karma and the End of Karma. Why is it important to teach Karma? It is the science ...
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Stillness In Samadhi

Knowing & Stillness In Samadhi

Phillip Moffitt talks about knowing and stillness in attaining mindfulness. Enabling what is felt by the mind and having the ...
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Flowering of Compassion

Spiritual Bypassing

Frank Ostaseski talks about Spiritual Bypassing. True spirituality is not something high or mighty, it's grounded. Frank talks more about ...
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Find Your Creative Flow State

Find Your Creative Flow State

Find your creative flow state and how you can be in the zone of creativity that will allow you to ...
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Guided Meditation with Jack Kornfield

Guided Meditation with Jack Kornfield

This 45-minute guided meditation audio clip by Jack Kornfield is designed to help you recenter and reestablish your equilibrium, serenity, ...
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Taking Care of Yourself

Taking Care of Yourself

To begin this Mindfulness Exercise on Taking Care of Yourself, please bring kind awareness to- why you chose this topic- how ...
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Self-Discipline Through Mindfulness – How To Become More Disciplined

Self-Discipline Through Mindfulness – How To Become More Disciplined

Master self-discipline through mindfulness and learn how to become more disciplined. Fight temptations that trap your mind and achieve high-level ...
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Whole Body Breathing

Whole Body Breathing

This Whole Body Breathing Meditation Script can be useful in guiding beginners to do whole-body scanning to promote calm, relaxation ...
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Nature of Awareness

Heart Practices for Awakening Joy

James Baraz talks about how mindfulness is the tool to awaken the joy in life; how opening the heart lets ...
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mindful family calendar

Mindful Family Calendar

To begin this Mindfulness Exercise on Mindful Family Calendar, please bring kind awareness to- why you chose this topic- how your ...
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New Mindfulness Community for Support, Connection & Inspiration

New Mindfulness Community for Support, Connection & Inspiration

I’ve been thinking a lot about the need for mindful community these last few months – about how as humans, ...
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Relaxation and Mindfulness in Pain

Relaxation & Mindfulness in Pain

Relaxation can reduce pain outcomes in both acute & chronic pain, while mindfulness can lead to improvements in psychological & ...
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mindfulness exercises guided meditation 4

Guided Meditation by Joseph Goldstein

This meditation starts with orientation after which Joseph Goldstein leads a guided meditation about mindfulness, Dharma & the practice ...
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Sharing Gratitude – Meditation

Sharing Gratitude – Meditation

Feel the gratitude growing and becoming brighter and brighter with each beat of your heart as you do the sharing ...
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Eugene Cash Intoxicated With Reality Audio

Intoxicated with Reality [Audio]

Eugene Cash talks about Buddha and his teaching on reality, or Dharma, and what it means to love ourselves, to ...
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Is There Too Much On Your Plate [Video]

Is There Too Much On Your Plate? [Video]

Feeling overwhelmed and stressed – having too much “stuff” on your plate? Be empowered & determined so you can take ...
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Mindfulness exercise

The Four Immeasurable Qualities [Audio]

The Four Immeasurable Qualities, by Ayya Anandabodhi:So, this morning’s reflection of death, contemplation of death. Probably not something you hear ...
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I’m Right, You’re Wrong!

I’m Right, You’re Wrong!

Learn loving-kindness, benevolence, radical acceptance and non-aversion in the core of the first brahma-vihāra - mettā, presented in this book ...
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how to set realistic expectations

How to Set Realistic Expectations

To begin this Mindfulness Exercise on Setting Expectations, please bring kind awareness to- why you chose this topic- how your belly, chest, ...
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Why Boys Are Mean to Girls They Like

Why Boys Are Mean To Girls They Like

Boys tend to be mean and nasty to girls they like, in part because they want to reduce the pain ...
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True Wisdom Of The Eagle And Condor

True Wisdom Of The Eagle And Condor

Spring Washam talks about the merging of wisdom and compassion: True Wisdom of the Eagle and Condor. How one grows ...
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discovering my state of mind

Discovering My State of Mind

To begin this Mindfulness Exercise on State of Mind, please bring kind awareness to- why you chose this topic- how your ...
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Deepest Truth of Human Existence

Deepest Truth Of Human Existence

Eckhart Tolle gives a talking meditation about connecting with the deepest truth of human existence, which means knowing yourself at ...
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The Secrets of Productive Conversations

The Secret of Productive Conversations

Fred Kofman shares his knowledge about the application of mindfulness at work to bring about efficiency & better results in ...
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Insight Practice

Insight Practice

Donald Rothberg teaches advanced meditative technology (just kidding). He talks about the 3 ways of seeing to aid in insight ...
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Every Moment a Chance to Restart

Every Moment a Chance to Restart

Gil Fronsdal talks about Every Moment is a Chance to Restart. Every moment things start anew is a useful perspective ...
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Mindfulness meditation

Mindfulness & Pain 2: Four Ways to Practice with Physical Pain

Oren Sofer talks about Four Ways to Practice with Physical Pain - Part 2 of Mindfulness & Pain Series. Pain ...
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Transforming the Jaudgmental Mind

Transforming the Judgmental Mind

The judgmental mind works in a very selective manner. Donald Rothberg explores the nature of the judgmental mind and gives ...
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Making an Effective Complaint [Video]

Making an Effective Complaint [Video]

Learn how to complain productively and efficiently by taking in mind these three simple steps that you should follow. Make ...
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Here and Now Pleasantness

Here and Now Pleasantness

This mindfulness exercise on the Here and Now Pleasantness practice helps you to be more aware and present in your ...
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Identifying Core Beliefs

Identifying Core Beliefs

Identifying Core Beliefs. How do those beliefs dictate our actions and behaviors? In this exercise, you’ll examine your core beliefs ...
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Lesson from Nature

Soulmate Attraction (Binaural Beat)

Attracting your soulmate is possible with mindfulness. This binaural beat will help you reach the grounded, fully present state necessary ...
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Law Of Attraction Spoken Affirmations for Happiness & Living In The Moment

Affirmations for Happiness & Living In The Moment

These spoken affirmations for happiness over time can change your life! These affirmations can be heard aloud. Remember to put ...
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Key to Stopping Self-Talk in the Head [Video]

Key To Stopping Self-Talk In The Head [Video]

Are you self-talking in the head? In this video, Eckhart Tolle says the key to stopping self-talk in the head ...
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A Guided Voice Meditation Soothing Hypnosis By Jason Stephenson

Guided Voice Meditation – Soothing Hypnosis

A carefully selected collection of ambient and new age music with a guiding voice to help you meditate and feel ...
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Bill Duane Mindfulness Practitioners Need Community

Mindfulness Practitioners Need Community

Bill Duane takes a little less than two minutes to talk about how important it is to have a community ...
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Putting on Weather Gear

Putting on Weather Gear

In this mindfulness exercise, you will put on a weather gear to help you deal with those unpredictable, stormy conditions ...
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are you controlling relationships

Are You Controlling Relationships

To begin this Mindfulness Exercise on Controlling Relationships, please bring kind awareness to- why you chose this topic- how your belly, ...
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Mindfulness for holiday stress

The Attitude In Awareness

Relax, observe, and allow. These 3 are the guidelines for the proper attitude in awareness meditation. Guy teaches to strike ...
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Generosity and Gratitude

Generosity and Gratitude

Donald Rothberg talks about the relationship between Generosity and Gratitude. It's the spirit of giving is based on the feeling ...
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Sharon Salzberg

How To Be Mindful at Work [Audio]

A talk on mindfulness at work by Sharon Salzberg:So, my book, Real Happiness At Work, came out on January 1st ...
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Seeing Through Eyes of Love [Audio]

Seeing Through Eyes of Love [Audio]

Vinny Ferraro talks about the power of perspective and how mindfulness can help us shift our perspective so that we ...
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The Weakness of Strength

The Weakness of Strength

According to the Weakness of Strength theory, it is impossible to have strengths without weaknesses. This idea reminds us that ...
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Self Compassion

Self Compassion

It’s all too easy to be extremely tough on ourselves; we need – at points – to get better at ...
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Self-Compassion Pause

Self-Compassion Pause

Practicing self-compassion is important to achieving greater clarity, compassion, & mindfulness in our lives. Try this free mindfulness exercise worksheet ...
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The Changing Dynamics of Families

Family dynamics have changed significantly over recent decades. Traditional family structures have started to dissolve as what we often call the “modern family” takes its place. Unlike more traditional family structures that were quite commonplace a few decades ago, the modern family is much harder to define. With softening rules about how we should structure the home and those in it, the modern family becomes whatever we wish to define it as.

Traditionally speaking, a family is often defined as “a group consisting of parents and children living together in a household.” However, the definition itself is outdated. Families don’t necessarily have children, and they don’t necessarily all live under the same roof. This freedom has eased much of the pressure that comes along with being a part of a family, but it poses unique challenges of its own. From the rise in alternative ways to be in partnership to the softening of clear roles amongst family constituents, we are still learning how to live harmoniously with one another in these more modern times.

In addition to these more commonplace ways of defining and understanding a modern family, it’s important to also consider how changes in our society and environment have affected the way families function. Some of the changes we have seen taking place over the past few decades include (but are not limited to):

  • Increased use of technology and personal devices, including amongst children
  • Increased reliance on technology
  • Movement of families into city centres
  • Changes in the ways we communicate
  • Continual access to the world outside of the family home through Internet and social media
  • Increased cost of higher education and a rise in student debt
  • Decreased privacy through Internet usage
  • A predominant shift from local to global

All of these factors influence the way we interact with family members. While modern families are in many ways more empowering for the individuals within them, it is also difficult to nourish meaningful relationships in a world that is highly connected in the virtual world and less connected fact-to-face. It might be safe to say that while the strength of our internet connection remains of top priority, human-to-human connection is set on the back burner.

All of that said, it is not impossible to achieve health and happiness amongst families, children included. As we work on increasing our awareness of the way we live and interact with the world and those around us, our sense of wellbeing and harmony within the family unit is enhanced. Becoming more mindful of our own inner landscape and of the experiences of those around us, we increase our ability to foster loving families.

How Mindfulness Benefits Children and Families

Deep connection is not often fostered enough in the modern world. Living on the surface of life through increasing engagement with social media and distractive technology, the more intimate aspects of ourselves go largely untouched. Mindfulness helps us to look inside and to increase our capacity for more authentic relating – first with ourselves and then with others.

As we increase our own capacity to be mindful of what is moving within us, our relationships begin to shift. Our own mindfulness practice sends out a ripple effect that leaves everyone within its path touched, even if only subtly. Relationships don’t change overnight, but they are undoubtedly impacted by our own willingness to look within.

This increased awareness for whatever exists in the present moment (the essence of mindfulness practice) helps to improve relationships of all varieties in a few different ways.

Mindfulness facilitates our ability to listen.

As we begin to pay greater attention to the present moment, we often find that compulsive thinking becomes more manageable. Though the mind doesn’t subside entirely, our ability to observe its habitual thought patterns and beliefs is enhanced. This is crucial for promoting healthy relationships as it intervenes with the tendency we often have of listening to respond as opposed to listening to understand. Relationships amongst family members can be challenging, but if we are able to listen non-judgmentally and compassionately, we move closer to finding a way to bridge whatever gaps divide us.

Mindfulness increases self-awareness.

Practicing mindfulness enhances our ability to be self-aware. This helps us to more clearly see when we are acting or speaking in ways that contribute to challenges rather than to solutions. As we get to know ourselves better, we are able to better manage unhealthy or destructive behaviours that are not contributing to the wellbeing of the family unit.

Mindfulness helps to regulate emotions.

Mindfulness draws us deep into our bodies and hearts, helping us to gain a clearer and broader understanding of our emotions. As humans, we are each susceptible to the wide range of human emotion, from joy and anticipation to fear and anger. Mindfulness helps us to notice when emotions are arising and facilitates our ability to more clearly see and understand what is beneath them. Are boundaries currently unclear or being crossed? Is there fear of rejection at present? What triggers our emotions is as unique as we are. As we get to know ourselves better, we learn to manage rising emotions in ways that effectively and healthily process and release them. Healthy expression of our emotions promotes healing and wellbeing in both ourselves and in the unit as a whole.

Mindfulness enhances empathy.

Compassion and non-judgment exist at the core of mindfulness practice. Through the implementation of a variety of heart-centered exercises, we foster our capacity for self-empathy. As we begin to feel this growing sense of warmth and acceptance for ourselves unconditionally, we naturally begin to extend that love outwards. We start to see ourselves in others, finding greater patience, acceptance, and understanding of the experiences of others.

Children benefit from mindfulness practice as well. Since most of our long-standing habits and behaviours are informed by our earliest years, mindfulness practice can help to promote self-awareness in children. When kids are exposed to mindfulness practice, they benefit in countless ways. Mindfulness practice promotes wellbeing in children by:

  • Increasing resilience when under stress
  • Promoting patience
  • Reducing social anxiety
  • Boosting mental health
  • Improving focus and cognitive control
  • Improving emotional regulation
  • Enhancing self-control and managing impulses

Children soak things up readily, even absorbing the subtlest of energies. As parents and caregivers, it is important to lead by example and to explore mindfulness as a personal practice. Mindfulness training can also be of great benefit when we wish to work with children, offering us the tools and skills to powerfully and effectively bring mindfulness into their lives.

Mindfulness Exercises for Kids and Parents

There are countless ways to help children understand what it means to be mindful. The best practice in any moment will depend on the child’s unique make-up, their age, and the present state of reality. The following are some introductory practices that can be introduced to children of all ages.

1. Breath awareness

Drawing awareness to the breath is a prime place to begin as it is a foundation of most mindfulness practices. Whether in moments when the child is already feeling calm or when he or she is overwhelmed by emotions, guide the child to pay attention to their breath for ten full cycles. You might help them to focus by encouraging them to silently repeat the words “inhaling” and “exhaling” each time their breath switches directions.

2. Mindful eating

To help promote healthy eating patterns amongst children, it can be beneficial to guide them through a simple mindful eating exercise. Start with one small piece of food and then repeat the exercise with a different food item. Guide them to first observe the piece of food with their senses of sight, sound, touch, and smell, one sense at a time. Then, guide them to place the object in their mouths and to chew it very slowly. Have them close their eyes as they pay attention to the taste and texture of the food and then to the feel of it as they swallow. Ask them if they can share a bit about their experience of eating this way.

3. Nature observation

Help them to take a break from screens and other modes of distraction by getting outside. Take a walk outdoors somewhere, whether through a forest, a park, or around a city block lined with trees. As you move through this natural environment, inquire with your child about the different things they notice. Help them to safely explore the world through their five senses. What do they see? What can they smell? How do things feel in their hands? What sounds do they notice? Ask them to point out where they observe life happening, helping them to expand their awareness of where energy and movement are present.

Mindfulness Practices for Families

Families who practice mindfulness together do well together. While many mindfulness practices are personal explorations, they can also be exercises that help to improve communication and closeness amongst family members. The following are a few exercises to practice together.

1. Offline time

Getting offline is a simple and powerful practice that will help both parents and children to be more content with and tuned into the present moment. Try to set aside some time daily to be without devices of any sort. When practiced just before bedtime, this exercise can help to promote a deep and restorative sleep.

Sometimes, you might sit in the same room, each family member choosing to read, write, draw, meditate, or reflect. Other times, family members might opt for solitude. Allow this practice to be natural by honouring the needs of each family member in each moment. The only rule: no connection to the world outside of the physical reality you are presently in.

2. Gratitude practice

Increase awareness of the abundance and blessings in life by going around the table at dinner and having each family member share what they are grateful for. Each person can share something they are thankful for in the present moment or something they enjoyed earlier in the day. As we increase our awareness of the blessings that exist around us, our happiness increases and we start to find that life gets brighter and more abundant.

3. Mindful communication

The most challenging times to be mindful is when conflict arises. In a family unit, disagreements are inevitable but how we manage them is within our hands (and within our hearts). When conflict comes up, invite everyone involved to take thirty to sixty seconds to close their eyes and tune into their hearts. Guiding the mind into the body and into the heart space can help us to then communicate more clearly and compassionately. In addition to this practice, mindful listening helps all parties to feel heard and understood. See if you can allow five minutes for each family member involved to speak about their experience of the situation at hand without anyone else following up with a counterargument. Allow each party involved to speak their feelings without being made wrong.

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