Tuesday I was leading a mindfulness lesson with my daughter's class, my girl is a 3rd grader, about emotions and our reactions.
This discussion/lesson was a 2nd part to a previous one about emotions, some being very strong and how to create space between our strong emotion and our reaction. While discussing how taking three or more breaths can create space between our strong emotion and what we do next, I realized that I had failed putting this into practice that very morning. I reminded the kids that it is a practice, mindfulness is just like their soccer, piano, swimming, dance practices and if we are honest, life. We will all make mistakes, some days it will be easier to create this space and others not so much.
My five year old boy has been in a phase where he is sassing me when it is time to feed the animals (his morning chore), get shoes on to leave for school, eat dinner, or well you name it and I get sass back. Since this lesson I have been focusing on creating space between my strong emotions (anger, frustration) and my reaction. During the course of a day there are many ups and downs, so each moment I catch myself reacting too soon I mentally cut myself some slack, take a breath and try again.
Each moment is a practice in doing the best we can and while I have many moments I wish I could redo, that is not possible so I can only focus on where I am now and start again.
P.S. still time to come practice with me on the mat tonight at Tranquil Space for some arm balancing fun which in turn means being in the moment, breathing.
I am a DC based yoga teacher, wife, mother of two kids and three animals who is using yoga both on and off the mat to find balance.