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Infinite Horizons would like to congratulate all inspiring educators for another transformative year of teaching and making a difference in the lives of others! This summer, it’s time for you to put away your teacher’s hat, take a deep breath, and begin nurturing your mind, body and heart.
In Transformative Teaching, we dedicate an entire chapter to the benefits of intentionally weaving Mindfulness into daily routines in the classroom. This school year, we also featured newsletter on incorporating mindfulness practices in your classroom, including Self-Calming Strategies for Students and Teachers and Cultivating Joy and Resiliency in Middle School and Beyond. Our hope was to provide you with research based tools to nurture yourself and your students.
While you may have resources to help you in the classroom, it’s only fitting that our June newsletter incorporates at home practices to help you unwind and heal from the busy school year. Improve your quality of life this summer by trying out these simple practices!
Notice and Internalize the Positive
Why? Good things happen around us all of the time but most of the time we don’t notice!
Time: A few minutes
How? Actively notice and name the simple, sweet moments that happen around you, such as...
Someone is nice to you
You spent time outside
The sun is shining
Your child is healthy
Your partner or a friend made dinner
You finished a difficult project at work
Savor it: Think about the experience for 5, 10, or 20 seconds. Stay with it, even if other thoughts enter your mind, let them pass and focus on the good thing.
Notice Positive Physical Sensations: For example, if someone is kind, let the feeling of being cared about fill your chest with warmth.
Why? I must nourish myself to nourish others.
How? Do one thing you love today. Some examples include:
Take a Bath/Shower
Read a Book
Go for a run/jog/walk/hike
Give yourself or someone you love a hug
Begin a gratitude journal
Smile or Laugh (watch or read something funny!)
Notice Positive Physical Sensations: When you are finished, pay close attention to physical sensations you have. Do you feel lighter? Happier? More at ease? Does your chest feel less tight? Take a few deep breaths and say, “May I be happy and peaceful.”
“Just Be” to See Clearly
Why? Focused breathing strengthens the immune system, improves digestion, and builds up neurotransmitters that are involved in moment-to-moment living.
Time: 5-20 minutes
Before bed, early in the morning, or when you have some down time, turn off all your technology and practice “just being”.
Sit up straight in your chair, lay down on your back, or sit cross-legged on the ground.
Close your eyes. Quiet your mind and focus on your breath. It may help to quietly say or think, “inhale, exhale, inhale, exhale.”
Thoughts will come to your mind, but try to let them pass, like clouds moving in the sky. Stay connected to your breathing. Place your hands on your stomach to feel the rising and falling during the inhale and exhale of your breath.
Give yourself the gift of self-care by trying one simple practice every day this summer! Taking care of yourself will not only benefit your mind, body, and heart, but it will also help you feel refreshed and renewed when the time to inspire a new group of learners comes around! Have a wonderful, peaceful summer, from all of us at Infinite Horizons.
Try It Out
Check out these free guided meditations that can easily be downloaded on your iPhone or iPad: