Mallika Chopra’s new children’s book, Just Breathe is a simple and easy introduction to meditation for children to gain the skills to handle life’s ever-changing obstacles. Since it’s aimed for kids, it offers approachable meditation techniques that can easily be added into your daily routine to feel more balanced.
Chopra says, “I really wrote the book for my kids, their friends, and for the larger community to give some tips that have been helpful for us.” She adds, “I am a believer in the power of pretty simple techniques that can help with kids and adults.” This friendly guide to mediation is a book for the whole family. While it might be tailored to kids, adults can benefit from this read, too!
As a lifelong meditator since the age of 9, she says, “I feel that it was a gift that was given to me at an early age, but I have been able to use it throughout my life when needed.” She first was taught by her father, Deepak Chopra, who had worked with many influential people, including the legendary singer, Michael Jackson. Being the passionate person that Chopra is, she was given the amazing opportunity to make a positive impact by launching the Heal The World Foundation alongside Michael Jackson as a recent college graduate.
From this huge opportunity at such a young age, she was inspired and uplifted to set out on her own path to create and do more for the world. While she built her company, she juggled the huge role of being a mother of two children, who also have invited meditation into their lives.
Although you would think meditation takes a leading role in their household, Chopra believes that parents shouldn’t force their children to meditate, but that it should be a calm approach. She expresses, “My goal in writing the book was to give kids a tool, so they can explore, discover, and experiment by themselves.” She adds, “Based on my own experience when I was 9, I was not a very good meditator, but it was something that was my own that I discovered.”
As a friendly invitation to meditation for children, many of these techniques in Just Breathe are simple and straightforward. One of the very first exercises is breathing. She explains, “When we simply breathe, it has some pretty impactful results”. She adds, “We go from more reactive responses to situations to more reflective responses.” It doesn’t have to be difficult or vague. “People feel that they have to sit with their eyes closed, perfectly still, empty their minds. There are a lot of misconceptions about what meditation really is. So I feel like just starting with short, simple exercises is a great way to begin,” Chopra says.
It’s time to be more in tune with our mind and body in this world of overstimulation. Children are surrounded by social media, and schedules only get busier with age. As a parent and trying to run a business, Chopra sometimes finds herself off track, but can use meditation as a helpful tool to strike a balance. She says, “I think it’s a natural part of life to figure out your balance at different ages, when you are in different careers, or when your family life changes.”
Before bed, one of Chopra’s favorite practices with her family is expressing gratitude. “I love to end the day doing one before bedtime, which is just thinking about what we are grateful for.” Another common exercise for the family is the “I AM” meditation practice that is found in Just Breathe: “For us, that’s just taking five to 10 minutes to be quiet. I do that every day now and sometimes the kids join me,” Chopra says.
Chopra does an outstanding job by putting together easy kid-approved exercises that children can use to reground themselves when they need it. She provides tools for children to gain emotional intelligence and confidence as they are figuring out the different stages of life.
To learn more about Mallika Chopra, visit her Intent Blog!