It is important to know the connection that exists between our minds and our bodies. In America we have a tendency to separate these two things as if they were total strangers. In reality they are all one. There is no separation between them. When we are happy and laughing and enjoying life we rarely have physical pain. Unless, of course, if we are laughing so hard that the muscles in our stomach area start to hurt! When this happens you can see the children grab onto to their stomach and yet they continue to laugh. When was the last time this happened to you!
So let’s take the time to add some fun exercises into our classes that help the children in several ways. Susan Kaiser Greenland in her wonderful book, Mindful Games Sharing Mindfulness and Meditation with Children, Teens, and Families, invites us to have the children “send their bodies friendly wishes by silently saying phrases like “May my foot be warm and cozy in this slipper, may my legs be strong when I ride my bike, and may my tummy be full (page 107). This helps the children see how what they think affects how they feel and how connected the mind and body really are.
She goes on to share another wonderful game that children can play to help them see the connections between the mind and the body. She calls it Mind, Body, Go!
Children roll a ball back and forth as they quickly name a sensation and an emotion that they’re feeling right now. It can be played with or without a ball in partners sitting across from one another, or with a group sitting in a circle (page 107).
The teacher might say something like, “My body feels stiff, and my mind feels a little nervous.” Now you name something and roll the ball back. (For example, “My foot itches, and I feel silly”) (page 108).
As you can see this can be done with any age kids or adults. You can think of many different and positive ways to play this game and how it can help the participants make that mind body connection. Once we get more in tune with our bodies we will have less stress in our lives, less fears, anxieties, and shorter bouts of headaches, stomach aches, and the like. Once we learn how to talk to our bodies with positivity, acceptance, and love we will have an elixir that will help improve our health in mind, body, and spirit. And this elixir is free for the taking, you don’t have to drive down the street to get it or across town. It is right where you are 24 hours a day 7 days a week!
So try it I think you’ll like it! I know your mind and body will that’s for sure! Let me know how it goes!
 Greenland K. S. (2016) Mindful Games Shambhala Publications: Boulder, Colorado