How to Master Mindfulness in 3rd Grade

IMG_5055My daughter had a teacher in 3rd grade that taught her how to write like a poet.

A poet herself, this teacher inspired my daughter to listen inwardly and write from her heart. She taught her how to notice the small things, the interesting things that caught her eye and to keep them in a writers notebook for future reference.

She taught her how to pay attention to the relationships in nature between birds and insects and trees, between people and their pets, parents and their children and the rain drops on the windowsill.

Over the year this writer’s notebook was filled with the thoughts, feelings and observations of a third grader that seemed well beyond her years. My daughter’s passages were deep and insightful and I think it had a lot to do with of the encouragement she received to listen within, to pause with wonder, and noticed the beauty that surrounded her.

She was learning how to be in the present moment.

I’m embarrassed to say that it took some time for me to realize that I too could stop, tap into the present moment and allow creativity to come through just as my daughter’s teacher had encouraged. I would often find myself irritated, angry and at times jealous of my daughters ability to just be still and write creatively and with such inspiration and I am certain a good part of this had to do with my inability to allow myself the time for reflection, stillness, space and contemplation.

I recently read an article by Pico Iyer titled The Joy of Quiet  (his book The Art of Stillness was recommend to me by a dear friend some time ago yet admittedly, I have not been still long enough to begin reading it!)

Iyer makes a powerful argument for our need to experience stillness, and not just in the physical sense like sleep or rest, but a deep need for our mind and spirit to feel replenished and reconnected.

Reflecting on his visit to a near by Benedictine hermitage, Iyer shares,  “I don’t attend services when I’m there, and I’ve never meditated, there or anywhere; I just take walks and read and lose myself in the stillness, recalling that it’s only by stepping briefly away from my wife and bosses and friends that I’ll have anything useful to bring to them.”

When my daughter writes, she tells me it brings her joy in the way that she rarely finds in other endeavors. Perhaps what she’s saying is that she’s tapping into that space of stillness which is central to joy and happiness.

She inspires me to create an opportunity for stillness and quiet in my own life which allows me to feel my creative self again, and by doing so I have more of myself to give to others.

I guess that’s one of the reasons I created Community Chocolate,  it’s a place for women to reconnect to themselves and others.

And it’s why if feel “Craving Quite” – this weeks Tuesday gathering- is so relevant and so needed as a place to pause in our week, it’s a place to slow down, get quiet, be still, tap in, and fill up!

 This week at “Craving Quiet” we  created our personal “Oasis of Inspiration” by reflecting on a few of these questions. Here they are for you to consider.

My Oasis of Inspiration

My who, what, where, when, why, and how list of  inspiration …so when I am in need of a little inspiration, I know where to find it!  Answer any or all of the following questions to create your unique resource for creativity, imagination, originality, artistry, genius, vision and flair!

  1. Who inspires you? Why?    Who do you inspire?
  2. Who are you with when you are most inspired?
  3. What inspires you?  What are you doing when you are most inspired? What are you involved in? What are you experiencing?
  4. Where are you the most inspired? Where have you been (or traveled) that left you feeling inspired?  In what environment, place or circumstance do you feel most inspired?
  5. When are you at your most inspired state?
  6. Why is it important for you to feel inspired? 

Need a little inspiration to create your “Oasis”?  You can find a list of ways to become inspired here!

Wishing Mothers everywhere a sweet Mother’s Day!





  1. Stephanie says

    I loved the idea of creating an “Oasis of inspiration”! Looking forward to our next gathering!

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