Scéalta – The Early Childhood Ireland Blog

< Back to Blog

Mindfulness at Work


Tuesday 12 March 2019

As a children’s yoga instructor, I often get asked by parents and caregivers for ways in which they can encourage mindful practices with their young ones. Now I could give you lots of different techniques, breathing exercises etc. but my most solid bit of advice would be look after yourself first. How often have you seen your little ones copy something you do? Maybe it’s a toddler wiping his highchair, a pre-schooler putting on your shoes, or your teenager giving you an attitude you may possibly have seen somewhere before. The point is these little people are looking to us. Their games involve role playing where they act out their version of our lives. If you want them to be more mindful, the best place to start is with yourself. By adapting your own mindful practice, you are making it the norm. Let them join in with your practices, talk about what it is you are doing and invite their questions. You will find that you will learn just as much from them.

Showing them and letting them be part of your practice is wonderful but let’s not forget, you need some real ‘you’ time too. It’s not selfish to take this time just for you, it is necessary. Schedule it into your day as you would an important meeting. Even if it’s just 5 minutes. Even now as you are reading this, start by taking a deep breath, relax the jaw and on an exhale, relax the shoulders down. Try it again but this time sitting up nice and tall, uncross your legs and just find that ease. Give yourself permission to close the eyes and just take 5 deep, slow breaths in this way. Just 5 breaths... You have chosen to take a mini moment of self-care, go you! Can you commit to this each day? Maybe taking just a couple more minutes? Maybe you need more guidance or someone to help keep you accountable. Yoga and meditation classes are obviously the ideal here, but if you really can’t go for that right now here is one way you can practice at home or in the work place:

Find a relaxing piece of music (I often use Spotify or YouTube). When choosing your song, notice the length of the song. If you only have 5 minutes, choose one that is 5 minutes. This way you are not tempted to clock watch and are free to focus on your breath. Get comfortable, sit up tall on your yoga mat, blanket, chair or bed. Close the eyes. Notice any thoughts that come to you, and they will come to you, but just bring it back to the breath. This might feel strange the first time you do it, you might laugh, you may even cry but just be present with it. Allow yourself to feel whatever it is you feel without judgement. You may even choose to focus on a mantra during this time. The repetition of a mantra (positive word or phrase) is thought to affirm its meaning to ourselves and change our thought process.

Try one of these or come up with your own:
  • I am enough
  • I am Strong
  • I give myself permission to slow down
  • Everything I need is within me 

Woman doing yoga - Mindfulness at Work

Be the change you wish to see in the world. Fill your own cup first. They have become such clichéd sayings but they couldn’t be truer. You deserve to be at your best and I truly admire you for taking steps to do this even if it was just sitting down and taking the time to read this article. You are amazing. Enjoy your practice and remember, you guide the direction of your energy and you are powerful.


Check out local Yoga and Mindfulness classes for Children and adults on my website:


Further reading: 

Early years educators 'your well-being matters' too - Dr. Jennifer Pope



Natasha Bryant is a mother of two young children and runs her own children’s yoga classes under the name Amazing Me Yoga. As someone who has suffered through illness, chronic pain and anxiety, health and wellness became very important to her. Natasha started as a gym instructor and very quickly fell in love with working with her body rather than against it. What started as a love for exercise soon grew when she realised it was just as important to look after ones mental health. She trained through Rainbow kids yoga and is passionate about learning more and more everyday. Now Natasha specialises in bringing yoga and mindfulness to children and families around the Dublin area. 

1 comments Comments

One Response

  1. Evelyn Murphy says:

    what a lovely piece, well done Natasha. Sometimes we forget about ourselves as we are always putting others first. We should all practice mindful moments and should be proud of who we are and what we can achieve. Thank you Natasha

Leave a Reply

Please Log In to comment:

memories(1) ECCE(7) keezy(1) stories(3) St. Patrick's Day(1) christmas(9) relationships(17) Workplace Relations(3) Motor neuron disease(1) Teamwork(1) Growing up Outdoors(1) Behaviour(3) code of ethics(1) E.coli(1) Vietnam(1) iOS(1) Mayo(1) keep in touch(1) Lego(2) Pretend Play(1) Leadership(1) trust(4) Budget 2018(1) Wrapping paper(1) Weather(1) Childcare Barometer 2018(1) STEM(3) curiosity(3) listening(1) Department of Education and Skills(1) Book Review(1) Large Doll Play(1) Supernanny(1) early years research(2) apps for children(1) Halloween(2) Empathy(1) june29(1) social media(1) Favouritism(1) Thanks(1) Ariana Pucci(1) grandchild(1) Albert Einstein(1) Buddies(1) New Appointments(1) role playing(1) Equality(1) Impact(1) ICBN(1) supportive environments(2) Snacks(1) Independence(1) preschool settings(1) Pobal(1) Change(1) Buddy Bench(1) Spiders(1) Traditions(2) Self Help Skills(1) Sustainability(3) gender stereotype(1) Nonverbal(1) Exercise(1) Identity(5) SAC(1) maternity health(1) Access and Inclusion Model(2) Children's Research Network(1) Sociodramatic play(1) Consent(1) Budget 2019(2) Providing Leadership to the First 5(1) Mo Scéal(1) Socioemotional development(1) The Lullaby Book(1) Mindfulness(2) DCYA(6) Dr. Emer Ring(1) Health(2) Feeding(1) Leargas(1) Brain(1) Building Resilience(1) Dance(1) developing motor skills(1) Confidence(1) Qualifications(1) play(35) UN Sustainable Development Goals(1) research(6) scéalta(44) Learning Stories Award(3) UNCRC(2) Educator - Leader in Practice Award(1) Light table(1) learning(19) Death(2) Quality(4) imotion(1) conversations(1) Awards(2) Affordability(1) Toby Bears Camping Trip(1) Maynooth University(2) play pod(1) Upcycling(1) Child mental health(1) community(5) Childhood(1) Painting(1) early years learning(1) Super Shed Stories(2) GDPR(1) Reggio Children Network(1) science week(2) Hand Hygiene(2) GoToMeeting app(1) Graduate(1) School Age Childcare(1) Awards Night(1) MECPI(1) planning(1) science(3) Adverse Childhood Experiences(1) curriculum(5) Decision Making(1) Leprechauns(1) Family(1) early childhood educator(2) Breathing(2) Special Needs Assistants(1) Routines(2) art of the relationship(1) Celebrate(1) outdoors(4) Self-regulation(1) Thinking(1) Kids Own(1) Prexit(1) IGL(1) routine(2) annual conference(1) Exploratory Play(1) Nutrition(1) Study Trip(1) refugees(1) Childcare(3) Titles(1) under 3's(3) Mud kitchens(1) Interactions(2) Research and Professional Learning(1) Margy Whalley(1) SPICE Framework(1) Scéalta Blog(99) Craft(1) Cork Institute of Technology(1) Children and families(1) Blocks(1) Jenga(1) coronavirus(1) Minister Katherine Zappone(1) The Jelly King(1) Little Buddies(1) outdoor space(3) Sculptures(1) ERASMUS+(3) Santa(2) environments(1) education(2) learners(1) children’s learning(1) Minister for Children and Youth Affairs(1) Potential(1) dining(1) Snakes(1) Care-giving routines(1) value(1) Kerry(1) Syria(1) Winter(1) TOY Programme(1) Maynooth(1) Loving Relationships(1) Your place(1) social science(1) Event Guide(1) RTE Investigates(1) Degree(1) Staff Motivation(1) Masterclass(2) Learning Story(1) dublin(2) worries(1) risk assessment(1) Performance Management(1) Gardening(1) Snack Time(1) Twitter(1) Maternity Leave(1) gender bias(1) Rituals(1) Sweets(1) Orla Kenny(1) Together Old and Young Programme(1) Wesco(1) Pre-School Services(1) Valentine's Day(3) Reading Time(1) Universal Design Guidelines(1) emotional environment(2) Smiles(1) Laughter(1) early childhood(1) Photographs(1) behavioural science(1) children development(1) Anthony Semann(1) Early Childhood Ireland National Awards(2) Mount Everest(1) Whole Group(1) Frustrations(1) reading(5) child-centric(1) Decisions(1) eating(1) interacting(2) Biting(1) development(8) story time(2) youdoodle(1) Home Corner(1) Time Out(1) Christmas Creativity(2) ECEC(3) Yoga(1) EM Standing(1) TRAP(1) Graduation(1) Maths Week Ireland(1) Engineering Ireland(1) Aistear Siolta Practice Guide(1) Administrative Burden(1) Obesity(1) Capable(1) Creativity(5) Children's Voice(1) Engineers Week(2) Gratitude(1) Sessional service(1) NAEYC(1) Children(4) Digital(1) ECEC Setting(2) Reopening Childcare(1) Fabric(1) transitions(10) Grief(1) Belonging(3) Environment(2) Love(3) dogs(1) Easter(1) Early Learning and Care Centres(1) Siolta blog(8) Learning Story Awards(2) Recycling(2) Aistear Siolta in Action(1) collaboration(1) Advocacy(1) overhear(1) HR(1) Maria Montessori(1) National Pyjama Day(1) Trade Unions(1) budget(1) Pedagogical leaders(1) emotional well-being(1) Reggio Emilia(1) Sequins(1) toddlers(3) Covid pandemic(1) Xbox(1) Trick or treat(1) Educator Award - Leader in Practice(1) Maths(5) Early Years Educators(3) Inter-generational learning(2) Digital Devices(1) Universal Design(2) Scéalta Book Review(1) Sleep(1) Early Childhood Ireland’s National Early Childhood Research Conference 2019(1) Policy and Implementation Panel(1) Policy(2) Training(2) Magda Gerber(1) Meal time(1) Participation(2) Map(1) Youtube Series(1) family time(1) code of professional responsibility(1) Fee Play(1) Penguins(1) CCTV(1) Aldo Fortunati(4) Laugh(1) First 5(1) Visual Impairment(1) babies(7) Wendy Lee(3) Montessori(3) Children's Rights(3) European Project(1) documentation(4) Effect of Lockdown(1) Infectious diseases(1) Covid19 crisis(1) Treasure(1) Imagination(3) National Holiday(1) Workplace well-being(1) feisty(1) National Bereaved Children's Awareness Week(1) Adoption(1) Trigonometry(1) ReCreate(2) World Health Organisation(1) Wilenski(1) CIT(1) United Nations(1) Art(6) Síolta QAP(1) Síolta Quality Assurance programme(1) Interaction(1) Exit interview(1) Confident(1) AIM(2) CPD(1) Malaguzzi(1) Vivian Gussin Paley(1) Opportunities(1) Design(1) Academics(1) Bereavement(2) healthy eating policies(1) Magnavacchi(1) friendships(1) listen(1) blog(40) Communicating(1) INTO(1) Shoes(1) Exploring and Thinking(1) Well-Being(10) Story(1) Pen green(1) Diversity(1) Running(1) learning bias(1) child-centred approach(1) purpose(1) conference(1) Online(1) Window(1) Visitors(1) Playschool(1) baby room(1) Queues(1) Drawing(2) Awards 2019(1) Meet the Members(1) Scents(1) Investment(2) San Miniato(4) life long learning(1) Inspections(1) Valerie Gaynor(1) Playdough(1) Glitter(2) Afghanistan(1) Names(1) Horizon 2020(1) UN(1) COVID-19(9) Leaders in Practice(1) Arithmetic(1) Irish(1) Ceremony(1) lockdown(1) Care routines(1) Mealtimes(1) Community involvement(1) Maths Week(1) Learning Journal(2) Inspirational(2) Time(1) Learning Stories(9) Inter-generational(2) Iceland(1) Equality & Inclusion Guidelines Training(1) First 5 transitions for children award(1) pablo(1) National Awards 2019(1) outdoor environment(1) Jillian van Turnhout(1) Fantasy play(1) mushrooms(1) Social Skills(1) responsive relationships(1) Inspired Practice Awards(1) Educator of the Year Award(3) Engagement(1) NCCA(3) Identity and Belonging(4) Book Club(2) play therapy(1) ELC(1) National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education(1) Montessori & Early Childhood Professionals Ireland(1) Party(1) Primary School(2) Funding(1) Mathematicians(1) DES Inspection(1) Performing(1) Flowers(1) journey(1) Human Resources(1) Irish Childhood Bereavement Network(1) bloom app(1) Plants(1) Cork(1) Challenges(1) Settling in(4) Communications(1) Engineering(3) Creative(1) Small World Play(1) Trauma-Sensitive(1) Support(1) Pobal sector profile(1) research submissions(1) Aistear(122) Shapes(1) man up(1) creche(1) Professionalisation(5) emotions(2) books(4) Academic Skills(1) Line-ups(1) education system(1) Thank you(1) Mixed age groups(2) University(1) dining experiences(1) outdoor play(6) Interests(1) PIP(1) Autism(4) Emergent Curriculum(1) General Data Protection Regulation(1) aistear blog(3) Cognitive development(1) AsIAm(2) risk(2) Body Language(1) Deirdre Rogers(1) Mental Health(4) Frosty the Snowman(1) show and tell(1) Anxiety(2) Department of Children and Youth Affairs(2) primary education(1) National Awards 2018(2) preschool(4) Mark Twain(1) Early Years(1) Research Seminar(1) ears(1) Music(3) Giraffe(2) educating(1) Games(1) Kilkenny(1) Inclusion(3) play pods(1) College(1) Annual Conference 2019(1) Intention(1) Stress(2) Learning journals(1) Workforce(1) Early Learning and Care(1) Arts(1) staying connected(1) Sport(1) Plastic(1) Research Conference 2019(1) linc(1) Iraq(1) Irish guidelines(1) Italy(1) UD(1) Builders(1) Covid response(1) Sustainable(1) Our Little Seed(1) Touch(1) Growing up in Ireland(3) meals(3) Rich Documentation(1) awards 2020(1) Through the looking glass(1) movement behaviours(1) Competent(1) Educators(2) Síolta(124) Partnership with Families Innovation Award(2) educarer(1) COVID-19 crisis(1) parents(6) Annual Conference 2017(2) Storytelling(6) experience(1) Awards 2018(3) Culture(2) Exploring(1) Facebook(1) Reflective Practice(1) EECERA 2016(1) Irish Early Years Research & Practice Seminar 2018(1) Magic(1) Relaxation(1) Norway(2) Employee(1) childcare services(1) National Childcare Scheme(1) Inspired Practice Award(5) early life(1) Self-Esteem(1) Treasure Chest(1) Liz Kerrins(1) reopening(1) Early Childhood Care and Education(2) Nuturing interactions(1) Arlene Forster(1) Early Childhood Ireland(4) Eritrea(1) Family wall(1) LINC Award for Leadership in Inclusion(2) phone apps(1) structure(1) Summer(1) Role play(1) Japan(1) risky play(2) Infection Control(1) Traffic Lights(1) Budget 2020(1) Reggio(1) Limerick(1) Seas Suas(1) communication(4) MA(1) Child Care(1) Appreciation(1) The Play and Learning in the Early Years(1) Elders(1) Oireachtas(1) Technology(3) pets(1) mental health problems(1) RIE philosphy(1) Recycle(1) Tuscan Approach(2) play stories(2) National Early Childhood Research Conference(1) Celebrations(4) Loss(1) Document Learning(1) Vertical grouping(1) bonds(1) Mantra(1) Pedagogy(2) Trade union(1) Exclusion(1) reopening ireland(1) racism(1) Patterns(1) respect(5) animals(2) Rising to the Challenge(2) Certificate(1) Dr Mary O'Kane(1) COVID-19 Reopening(2) food(1) First 5 strategy(1) Wonder(1) National Council for Curriculum and Assessment(1) continual professional development(1) Positivity(1)


Site maintained and developed by Cloud Nine