Does Mindfulness Training Really Work For Preparing Students To Be In The Moment?

Guest Blogger, Jason Phillips

Numerous things take place within your mind at the same time. More so, when you are students, it feels challenging to concentrate on the present moment and focus on the things that will benefit your learning. In such moments, the practice of mindfulness is very essential; it helps you to concentrate on the things that are happening around you. Mindfulness gives you the chance to pay more attention to the present moment without feeling confused about how it should be. This practice eliminates the feeling of judgment hence making you open to the activities that are surrounding you. It has proven to yield results for both adults and students in various capacities. If you are yet to incorporate mindfulness in your practice, here are a few benefits of using the practice.

Improves both Mental and Physical Health

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Mindfulness has proved to help people in various ways. It works to ensure that the general well-being of a person is observed in multiple ways. With practicing this form of meditation, it gives you the ability to relieve stress, reduce chronic pain, treat heart disease, improve sleep, lower blood pressure and several other things. All these conditions, if you are not able to deal with them at a time, they will have an impact on general learning performance. Therefore, for you to concentrate more on the present, it’s common that you would need to deal with the present situation with its crisis. Additionally, for most people, dealing with the situation results in taking on a practice that will help you forget about the present moment for a short while. In other words, your forms of handling things will result in a mental problem. Mindfulness can help you deal with things such as substance abuse, anxiety disorder depression and other types of disorders. Instead of giving an opening where you will start to practice tolerance to the situation, mindfulness offers you an opportunity to understand the experiences and accept the way they are with their emotions and pains. This helps you to deal with the present moment with avoiding responsibilities.

Improve Academic Success

For students, the present moment is their studies. Therefore, if mindfulness gives you the opportunity to concentrate on the present moment and have the ability to handle the situation as it is, then, it enhances the ability for students to concentrate and focus on their academics. Every student has the desire of excelling in their academics. However, some things will always pull them down and prevent them from achieving their goals. Mindfulness will help to eliminate all external stress to ensure you have an open opportunity to make an academic success.

Boosts Resilience and Provide Support

As a private tutor, the need for ensuring you have a well round student is very critical. However, the practice is not possible especially if your students are surrounded with numerous that affect their general health. The method of mindfulness, however, plays a significant role to ensure that the student is well prepared to focus on the present moment. It improves empathy, emotion regulation, social skills and coping, mood, self-esteem and confidence, and the ability to focus. Additionally, mindfulness boosts resilience, which is a beneficial skill. It helps students to cope with struggles and helps them to regulate and understand their emotions hence develop psychologically, emotionally and academically. Integrating mindfulness with other cognitive therapy has also proved to motivate and quicken results. This is because it reduces the emotional problem faster hence boosting resilience and other social-emotional skills to ensure well-rounded results.

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Conclusion

Lastly, the practice of mindfulness is also useful for people in a working environment. There are often when the office chances schedules and working hours. This method is likely to affect your other place hence result to loss of concentration or emotional destruction. This in return will affect your performance and consistency. However, the practice of mindfulness in such chances will ensure that your resilience is activated. Additionally, it will reduce fatigue, stress and psychological distress. If there are employees with poor mental health issues, integrating the practice of mindfulness and other cognitive therapy will ensure they improve and become better employees within a short period.

Author Bio: Jason Phillips is a regular contributor at many sites and mainly focuses on kids related topics. He also works for a site smiletutor.sg which offers online tuition services in Singapore.

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Top 10 Steps You Should Take to Respond to Cyberbullying

Guest Blogger, Carrie Goldman on behalf of  Kidguard

Cyberbullying is an issue that affects us all: grown men and women, teenagers, tweens, and even children. It can eat up a shocking number of mental and physical hours each day, especially given the amount of time we spend with screens.

No one is immune. Whether you are a female gamer, a celebrity, or just a kid trying to navigate the social scene on Instagram, you can encounter unparalleled levels of viciousness online.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, the average 8- to 10-year-old spends nearly 8 hours a day with different media, and older children and teens spend more than 11 hours per day.  About 75 percent of 12- to 17-year-olds own cell phones, and nearly all teenagers use text messaging.

As a result, kids and adults can access social media at any time of day or night.   In speaking recently with a group of young teens, they told me how thoughts of social media often consume their time. Anxious curiosity compels the students to seek out what others are saying about them.

“And even if no one is saying anything bad about me, I feel stressed out when I see pictures on Instagram of people hanging out, and I’m not there,” explained Ellen, an eighth grader at a Chicagoland school.

This phenomenon is called FOMO, or Fear Of Missing Out, and it affects both kids and adults who watch other people post about their social interactions online.  Even the kids and adults who have active, healthy social lives can feel paranoid about not being included in online conversations.

FOMO is a separate issue from the victimization of cyberbullying, but both create anxiety and stress. These feelings can ramp up dramatically and include panic attacks and depression when you are being directly attacked online. First, take a moment to ascertain that you are actually being bullied instead of suffering from FOMO.

10 steps to take in response to cyberbullying

What Forms Does Cyberbullying Take?

  • Sending hurtful or threatening messages about another person
  • Posting sensitive, private information about a person for the purpose of hurting or embarrassing that person
  • Pretending to be someone else in order to make that person look bad and/or to intentionally exclude someone from an online group
  • Making cruel websites about a person
  • Spreading rumors online or through texting 

Some schools claim they are unable to respond to cyberbullying because the online misbehavior often takes place off school property.  But this excuse is no longer valid.

Justin Patchin, Ph.D., of the Cyberbullying Research Center, advises the following standards: schools CAN discipline students if their online expressions result in a “substantial disruption of the learning environment,” or if their actions “infringe upon the rights of another student (to feel safe, comfortable, and supported at school).”

Even if the cyberbullying takes place on sites that kids cannot access during school hours, such as Instagram, YikYak, Snapchat or Twitter, the school can take action if the effects of the cyberbullying spill over into the school environment.

Cyberbullying Intervention: Top Ten Steps to Take If Digital Attacks Are Happening

If you end up in a hostile situation, it can feel very overwhelming.  Having a plan can help you restore some control.  Here are the top ten steps you or your child should take in response to being cyberbullied, as recommended in my award-winning book on bullying:

1. Disengage immediately.  Bullies want a direct reaction, and if you retaliate, this behavior can make you culpable too.

2. Print out the evidence immediately before others can erase it. Be sure to do this before reporting the bullying. Download copies of any YouTube videos as evidence before the YouTube user who uploaded it can delete it.

3. Block/delete/ban the bullies.

4. Report bullying to the site or network on which it occurs.  They may deactivate the bully’s user account.

5. Consult an attorney to assess if there is a legal case.

6. Take the proof to the school, the workplace, and if necessary, the police.

7. Monitor yourself or the target for signs of overwhelming depression or anxiety, and seek out counseling if necessary.

8. Help a target get involved in the “real world” and see real friends.

9. Have the target join a support group for kids or adults who have been cyberbullied.

10. Do not sleep with your phone in your room.

 

Digital Allies: Steps to Take If You Witness A Friend Being Cyberbullied

Kids who click “like” on a mean social media post or who retweet a cruel Tweet are just as guilty as the person who created the content. Here are some tips for how kids can act as an ally instead of as a participant or a bystander.

  • Focus on supporting the person who is being attacked instead of launching a retaliatory attack against the aggressor.  The goal is to make a bullied person feel better, not to start an online war that turns into real-life violence and aggression.
  • Ask your child to reach out to the target and offer empathy or a listening ear.  Even a kind text message makes a huge difference.
  • Have your child take a screen shot of the bullying.  Evidence is critical.
  • Have your child report the bullying to the school.

The most important thing you or your child can do is remind a bullied person that things will eventually improve.  The current scandal of the day will pass, as painful as it feels right now.  You can get through this; you are strong.

Article originally posted on Kidguard

Carrie Goldman is the award-­‐winning author of Bullied: What Every Parent, Teacher, and Kid Needs to Know About Ending the Cycle of Fear (Harper Collins, 2013). She travels around the country educating companies, schools and community groups about bullying prevention, intervention, and reconciliation. She also serves as the Curriculum Director for the Pop Culture Hero Coalition

 

New App Supporting Parents Through Challenging Moments

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Guest Blogger, Tomasz Mularczyk

As a teenager, I used to surreptitiously read the parental guidebook “How To Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish – mostly just to be able to see through all the tricks my parents were using, but also because of the hand-drawn scenes which were interesting by themselves. When my first child was born I found myself attending a workshop based on the book series and later saw in practice how effectively and help those suggestions actually were. Fast forward a decade and I’m a father of three kids and a wonderful book for every fresh parent – “How To Talk So Little Kids Will Listen” by Adele Faber’s daughter, Joanna Faber and Julie King hits the stores.

I’m very excited that it is now accompanied by Parenting Hero”, an iOS app that my studio has developed in cooperation with Joanna Faber and Julie King. “Parenting Hero” uses the proven methods from the book and I see it as fast and modern way to learn and practice without hurting my own children. Hand-drawn comics similar to the ones in the book series allow the user to play out typical parenting challenges and choose how best to respond, giving parents new strategies for handling common conflicts with kids.

“Parenting Hero” offers effective solutions for everyday challenges with children, and since I see how many times I’ve already used it, I’m sure it will help parents form a more joyful relationship with their kids. The app includes 15 different situations represented in the form of short scenes and 45 solutions to the presented issues along with tips and comments. The application covers a variety of topics, i.e. preventing violence between children, supporting their development and helping to build up their self-esteem and I hope it will be a valuable tool for helping families become more harmonious and less of a battleground.

Click here to download Parenting Hero from App Store

Android users will have a discounted rate for $2.99 starting tomorrow, 1/10/18.

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