4 min read

The Art of Mindfulness in Parenthood

Mindfulness has been found to improve mental and physical health. It reduces stress and even increases overall happiness. It helps parents stay in the moment, appreciate time with their children, and creates stronger memories.
Mom and daughter practicing yoga and mindfulness together
Image by Ketut Subiyanto on pexels.com

Tips on how to make the most of the present

"The days are long, but the years are short."

As a new parent, I hear this sentence being constantly repeated to me. I even use it as a mantra on the hard days. It's a reminder that this time is fleeting.

You blink and they are blowing out the candles on their second birthday.

It makes you scared to blink again.

There are many moments where you suddenly have a gut-punch reminder they are growing up. They will never be this little again. It can happen while putting away clothes that no longer fit or when getting a Google photo reminder.

As parents, we often spend so much time running around putting out little fires that we forget to admire and appreciate the warmth that comes with it.

We can find ourselves anxiously waiting for the next milestone:

  • I can't wait until he crawls
  • If only he could walk already
  • It is going to be better when he talks
  • I can't wait to get some me-time when she starts school

Living in the future or dwelling in the past, we are forgetting the only thing we really have - the present.

How Do We Pay Attention to the Present?


Mindfulness is the practice of intentionally keeping your focus on the present moment. It is the art of accepting it without judgment.

Deliberating paying attention to the present takes effort. But like any skill, it becomes easier with practice.

The Benefits Are Endless

Mindfulness has been found to improve mental and physical health. It reduces stress and even increases overall happiness.

Mindfulness has significant benefits for all who use it. But parenthood has its own unique benefits with mindfulness.

It helps parents stay in the moment, appreciate time with their children, and creates stronger memories.

Mindfulness meditation changes brain structure. It boosts the areas responsible for helping us remember things more vividly. It helps us focus better and improves self-awareness.

The Art of Mindfulness in Parenthood

Here are some ways to introduce mindfulness into your everyday life.

1. Study Your Children

Study your children like an art piece in a museum.

Focus on the little details that make them unique. Notice the way their hair spikes up in all different directions (no matter how many times you comb it).

Look into their eyes and admire the color, the different shades, and the depth of them.

Stroke their arm and admire (with a hint of jealousy) how soft their skin is.

Tool: Pick out 5 tiny details about your child's uniqueness and zone in on them.

2. When Shit Hits The Fan, Look At The Bigger Picture

Parenting tests you.

There will be days that will bring you to the brink of insanity.

This technique can give you a look at the bigger picture. I'm not promising that you will suddenly feel rainbows and sunshine, but it can reduce the feeling of overwhelm and frustration.

Tool: In the middle of the Shitstorm (kids yelling, making a gigantic mess of their cereal, spouse running late) take a few seconds to visualize 20 -30 years from now.

Your children have moved out. They are living life as an independent adult. They don't call as often as you would like because they are busy. You wish they would come home for Christmas, but this year they are spending it with their partner's family.

Now bring yourself back to the Shitstorm of the present.

Look at their faces that bring out so much emotion in you (joy, love, frustration, confusion). Realize this moment is a tiny drop in their pool of existence. Think about that future you imagined and how much you would want to be in this shitstorm right now just to have another second with them at that age.

3. Take a Mental Snapshot

To balance out the shitstorms, there are moments that you wish you could put them into a bottle and carry it around with you everywhere.

The moments where pure love and joy transport you out of yourself.

Savor these moments.

Tool: In your perfect moment, dwell further. Take a mental snapshot, as though you can capture this moment perfectly in your memory.

Focus on all the details to store them away forever.

  • What is the weather like?
  • What are your children wearing?
  • What are they doing?
  • What are you feeling?

Take that mental photo to keep forever.  

4. No Phones

Phones have taken over our existence. They are present with us all the time, even on the toilet (guilty). We can overlook so many of the tiny moments present in parenthood if we are only giving half of our attention.

Tool: Give your children and yourself a moment without phones. Let yourself be bored. Fill that boredom together.  

5. Embrace Your Inner Child

As adults, we forget how to play. Children have a remarkable ability that adults have lost over time. They find awe every day.

Tool: Let your child guide you. Follow them into their world of awe and imagination. Admire with them the tiny snail they found. Be in awe of all the colors on one single leaf. Jump in the puddle.


Mindfulness in parenthood allows us to transform the chaos of daily life into moments of awe, appreciation, and connection. By embracing mindfulness, parents can ride out the highs and lows of parenthood. Using the tips listed above, we can introduce the art of mindfulness in our everyday lives.