Mindfulness of Youth

Have you ever had the experience of driving somewhere, and before you know it you’re at your destination, with hardly any recollection of how you got there? I know I have! It’s easy for our brains to go on auto-pilot, without being mindful of our surroundings or situation. It’s harder, and much more rewarding, for us to practice mindfulness in our day to day life.

I noticed recently that my two year old son Walter is probably the most mindful person I know! He has picked up on language quickly, and his conversations are most often about things in the here and now. He may walk down the street with me and see a construction project in action, and excitedly point out “man working!” He might also go to the grocery store with me and proclaim “I really like cheese!” as we peruse the cheese section. What I admire most about his ability to be mindful is that it comes so naturally to him. He is not worried about what the future may bring - he’s more concerned about the men working NOW and the cheese that he wants NOW. I know that for me personally, having a kid has been the biggest and best reminder of what can be gained by stopping and smelling the roses.