This weekend I was lucky enough to get away from all the stresses and strains that modern day living bombards us with. The place that I went with my partner and friends felt like a secret, magical world that was filled with serenity and stillness. The weekend was the complete opposite to my usual timetable of getting up, making breakfast, taking the children swimming, doing the weekly shop, making lunch, doing homework, cleaning the house, washing the clothes and so on! The list sometimes feels endless and being in your home environment, if you are like me, you cannot just sit down, be still, be quiet and take a moment. So this weekend away was a breath of fresh air to my overcharged brain, it gave it an opportunity to slow down, to reflect and enjoy a range of different activities. A freezing walk on the beach in the rain, a delicious lunch catching up on old and new times, the silence of a forest and the icy freshness on my face of a mountain stream. It felt amazing.
Being given time to regather your thoughts, to reflect upon your day, can be considered as a luxury to some. It is not something, we as adults are used to doing on a regular basis. We fill our day to the brink, so there are no moments left to just stop, press the pause button and silence the endless chatter in our mind. I see our children follow in our footsteps of needing to cram every single moment of every single day, with something fast and furious. That’s why I run the Mindfulness Colouring Club, as colouring can be a highly effective way of fostering physical and psychological wellbeing in children. While it's a relaxing form of self-expression that stimulates creativity it also promotes a range of benefits to nurture well-being.
These benefits include:
Enhances fine motor skills - colouring is an activity that helps children build the muscles in their fingers, hand and wrist which aids in manipulating small objects.
Improves hand-eye coordination - colouring in requires great attention to detail and precision to keep within the lines which gives children an opportunity to develop coordination.
Develops spatial awareness - visual perception is an important skill to develop in young children. Colouring can help strengthen awareness of the hand's position and margins on the page to help children keep their pencil within a given area.
Relaxes and releases emotions - colouring can have a profoundly therapeutic and calming effect on children as they shift their focus to concentrate on finishing their picture. This peaceful activity can provide an outlet for processing emotions and take the focus off challenging situations.
So the next time your child is perhaps worrying about something, or feeling out of sorts with themselves. Sit them down with a colouring book and pens and tell them to get colouring. Then watch and see the transformation of their minds as it calms down and is able to rebalance it’s thoughts to a more peaceful state.