My daughter and two granddaughters, ages 9 and 5, started meditating together a few months ago. The results have been noticeable. Their meditation practice includes reading affirmations from a book by Yvonne Read titled Parenting Through the Power Within: Positive Affirmations for Early Childhood Development.
According to Read, “affirmations can have powerful emotional and physical effects in the body. Daily affirmations aren’t just nice and fun. They actually lay hard wiring in the brain, creating new neural pathways and developing automatic subconscious responses to all life’s experiences.”
Like most young families, their lives are filled with so many daily activities they are constantly on the go. My daughter wanted to find a quiet way for them to connect with each other and to teach them a way to get in touch with their internal selves, especially their feelings and strengths.
While searching for some resources, she discovered Read’s book and has incorporated the affirmations into their meditation practice. The three of them have developed a 10-minute ritual, which they try to practice 3 or 4 times a week. They gather in a circle on the living room floor with their meditation supplies: a small chime, a candle, three polished heart-shaped stones, Read’s affirmation calendar, and small notebooks for both girls.
With the timer set for 5 minutes, one of the girls lights the candle and the other rings the chime. They hold their smooth stone in their hands and close their eyes in the silence. After they finish meditating, they each take a turn repeating the affirmation three times along with several verbal acknowledgements about the affirmation. For example, the affirmation: I am filled with love is accompanied by these verbal acknowledgements:
- Today I will remember I am filled with love all the time.
- I can never run out.
- I was born with enough love to last my whole life.
- I will let the love spill out of me and into all the other people.
- I know I am filled with love always.
- I ask that all the people in the world will remember they are filled with love always.
- And it is so.
The final step is to answer some questions on the topic:
- Did you remember you are filled with love today?
- How did that make you feel?
My 5-year old granddaughter has already internalized one of the first affirmations. My daughter reported that the two girls were outside doing their chores together and the older one, in an attempt to get her younger sister to do the chores, said: “I’m more powerful than you.”
The younger one, rather than arguing, repeated to herself silently while they continued their chores: “I am powerful. I am powerful. Today I will remember that I am powerful.” When they were finished, she came inside with a proud smile on her face and told my daughter: “Mama, I am powerful!”