Your Attention is a Resource

Toddler leans over his crib and laughs


Happy Memorial Day!

This is a holiday of reflection and gratitude (in addition to pancake breakfasts, grilling out, and parades!).  I want to encourage you to try to carry that spirit of gratitude into the rest of your week.  In our Mighty Minds program, we talk with kids about the way in which attention is a resource– you get to choose where you spend your attention, and wherever you spend your attention is what you are “buying” more of!  We can change how we feel by noticing and intentionally directing where we are focusing our attention.

This week, test it out!

  • When you notice yourself stuck or spinning on thoughts or topics that make you feel stressed or upset, make a concerted effort to shift gears and think about something different.  (With kids, we talk about the way in which you can change the channel on your mind much like you can change the channel on a TV…  although let’s face it, changing the channel on your mind can be MUCH more difficult!).  If you notice that your mind keeps going back to the thing that is making you feel badly, that’s OK– just keep on gently trying to redirect it.
  • Make a point of taking time each day to spend your attention and energy thinking about things that make you feel good, or things in your life that are going well.  You can do this both reactively (e.g., if you find yourself annoyed with your child or your partner, try to make a mental list of the things that you love about them!) or proactively (e.g., beginning your day by thinking about one or more things you are grateful for; ending your day with identifying the highlights of the day or having a family conversation about these moments over dinner).

Today, I am grateful for coffee, good friends who bring us dinner, the sound of a snoring baby, the book that I just got off the waitlist for at the library, and the long weekend!  Sending all of you lots of warm wishes as we launch into the final week of May.

A few related reads:

Mindful Moment

Tips for Making the Holiday Chaos More Manageable

Tips for Making the Holiday Chaos Feel More Manageable No magic wand, just a few tips and tricks Hi, Practice families! With only three full weeks between the Thanksgiving holiday and the winter break, the rush toward the holidays this year feels particularly...

How to Get Your Kids to Follow Directions

How to Get Your Kids to Follow Directions No magic wand, just a few tips and tricks.Happy December, Practice families!Let's face it-- no matter how much we love our kids, it might have been a bit of a relief to send them off to school today after a rainy holiday long...

Screen Time and Mom Guilt

Screen Time and Mom Guilt.  Hi, Practice families! A few weeks ago, a good friend from grad school (also a child psychologist, male, childless) forwarded me this article from the New York Times Parenting section, 'Screen Use Tied to Children's Brain...
Inspiration & Parenting Tips Right To Your Inbox

Be the first to catch warm feelings and unique promo codes when you subscribe to our weekly newsletter or our monthly prenatal/postnatal newsletter!