We consider Mindfulness to be a key educators' competence - especially for parents' educators.
What is Mindfulness?
Mindfulness is defined by Jon Kabat-Zinn as “paying attention in a particular way; on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally.” It means maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment.
Benefits of Practising Mindfulness include:
- improvement of both mental and physical health e.g. stress and burn-out
- increased capacity to focus and to redirect attention to what is at stake, including greater concentration
- less emotional reactivity and therefore better ability to deal with conflict and unpleasant situations
- more cognitive flexibility and therefore ability to adapt to new situations
- ability to slow down and take distance
- it creates greater empathy and compassion and therefore it increases relational and cooperative attitudes and abilities.
All these are essential qualities in education, especially in nowadays, where speed of actions and reactions has considerably increased.
Research has shown that self-compassion through Mindfulness greatly enhances emotional well being. It boosts happiness, reduces anxiety and depression.
Good parenting is about giving a child opportunities to learn how to deal with their emotions … [and] helping a child understand him or herself as a social being": Paul Gilbert, a clinician and researcher at the University of Derby in the U.K. author of “The Compassionate Mind”:
- Modeling self-compassion through Mindfulness — is of utmost importance, children watch their parents for ways to deal with life. If they see their parents beating themselves up, that message is stronger than anything a parent preaches.
- Parents can help children and adolescents through the steps of compassionate self-treatment through Mindfulness.
- Researchers are finding the key to a happy and successful life is resilience, that is, being able to rebound in the face of difficulties and is a factor in leading to higher levels of attainment and promotes social and cultural inclusion.
EMP:PATH will provide Mindful Parenting training
practices to help improve parenting and educator competences, fostering positive child development.
We will also look at Mindfulness in Schools and positive parenting solutions with exploration of the parent / educator child relationship.