Dr. Willard has been practicing meditation for over 20 years, and teaching for almost as long. His thoughts on mental health have been featured in The New York Times, The Washington Post, mindful.org, cnn.com, and elsewhere.

Mindfulness for Kids 9: Sounds

with Dr. Christopher Willard & Hunter Clarke-Fields

Join Hunter Clarke-Fields and Dr. Christopher Willard in this special series of mindfulness practices for kids! Mindfulness offers kids a powerful tool for managing the pressures of school, peer relationships, and the increasing digital distractions, ultimately promoting their overall emotional intelligence and promoting a healthier, more balanced approach to life. 

[Mindfulness For Kids 9] Sounds

Read the Transcript 🡮

*This is an auto-generated transcript*

[00:00:00] Hunter: You're listening to a Mindfulness for Kids episode of the Mindful Parenting Podcast. Today, we are doing a practice with sounds.

Welcome to the Mindful Parenting Podcast. Here it's about becoming a less irritable, more joyful parent or kid. I'm your host, Hunter Clarkfields. I help smart, thoughtful parents stay calm so they can have strong, connected relationships with their children. I'm the creator of the Mindful Parenting course, and I'm the bestselling book, Raising Good Humans, and now Raising Good Humans Every Day.

I'm joined by Dr. Christopher Willard, clinical psychologist, author, and dad. He is the author of 20 books, including Alpha Breaths and Growing Up Mindful. Both of us have been practicing mindfulness for over 20 years, and we are so excited to share the benefits with you.

Hi, Chris. Good to see you again.

[00:00:59] Dr Chris Willard: Hey, Hunter. Nice to see you. Another week.

[00:01:02] Hunter: Another week, another meditation. I'm so excited to chill out with you. So what have you got for us today?

[00:01:10] Dr Chris Willard: Well, I thought I would do one of my favorite practices. I know a lot of us tend to focus on breathing. My, my kids tell me breathing is boring.

Um, you know, and I also struggle to focus on, on breathing as an anchor. So what I'd like to do is Focus on sounds today as our anchor of attention, and I'll just guide us through. Does that sound, sound good to you?

[00:01:32] Hunter: Yeah, that sounds great. Sounds. Ha ha ha.

[00:01:36] Dr Chris Willard: Sounds great. Well, let's just start again. Sounds are a little easier when we close our eyes or lower our eyes, so we can begin with that.

And then I'll invite us to imagine that maybe we've got like superhero listening abilities or we've got ears like, uh, like a deer or a rabbit, one of those creatures that has incredible hearing ability. When you give them a start, I'll, I'll just invite us to begin to notice what's the farthest away sound that you can hear.

Let's ween those ears out. Maybe a sound outside of your house or apartment. Is there anything that you can hear out on the street or beyond?

Cars, airplanes, distant sounds.

And then just coming a little bit closer. Maybe sounds a little closer that are outside.

And zooming in a little bit closer still, noticing sounds from inside your house,

building that you're in. Can you hear people's footsteps or voices,

music, TVs, cooking?

And then coming a little bit closer still, just noticing sounds in the room that you're in.

Fans, heating,

buzzing of computers or lights. And then coming closer still, what sounds do you hear? Your own body making the... Rustling of your clothing, creaking of your chair,

maybe noticing too the sound of your own breath.

And how does your breath sound outside of your body,

as well as how does your breath sound inside your body? It sounds a little different

than noticing any other. Sounds from inside your body, can you hear your stomach growling, heartbeat, blood rushing past your ears,

and seeing is it possible to hear the sound of your own thoughts, is that possible?

And as well as spaces between your thoughts.

And then back out once more to notice sounds and any silences or spaces between them.

You feel ready, you can just blink your eyes open and see if you can bring the same attention to the rest of your senses that you brought to your ears,

knowing at any point you can always just come back to sounds to get your bearings, to come back to the moment, check in with yourself and the world around you.

[00:05:41] Hunter: That was lovely. I heard cars. That And I heard crows. Thank you so much, Chris.

[00:05:48] Dr Chris Willard: Thank you, Hunter. One of my favorites. Thanks for letting me share.

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