In a generation where multitasking has become a way of life, practicing mindfulness is something easier said than done. Though I have read a lot of articles about it and attended quite a few events that promote it, being mindful is still something I find hard to consistently do.
As a work-at-home mom, I try to do everything as simultaneously as I can.
I wash my daughter’s clothes while thinking of a great article intro. I clean the mess at home while rendering the video I’m editing. I play with my daughter while doing online grocery shopping. I eat while catching up on social media updates.
You know…things that would probably shock my great grandparents. 😳🤭
At first, it looks ideal and efficient, yet in the long run, it is honestly more exhausting than focusing on my office work when I was still in the corporate world or just doing household chores the whole day. When I try to do so many things at the same time, I lose my focus. I lose my energy and enthusiasm. 🤯
And who would’ve thought that this weakness of mine is my 3-year old’s strength? Though it seems that she has so much to learn from me, our daughter Tash is actually my teacher of life lessons as deep as mindfulness.
Whenever this very “strict” mindfulness guru of mine asks me to play with her or bathe her or have gigil time with her, she demands my 100% attention.
“Mom, put down your phone.”
“Mom, close your laptop.”
“You’re not playing, Mommy. You’re working.”
Children are really great teachers when it comes to mindfulness. They want you to “be in the moment” as much as they are. They’ll even grab your face just for you to focus on what you’re doing. 😅
Tash, like many children in the world, knows best how to live in the moment. During her pretend play as Nala of Lion King, she’ll really think and act as a brave lioness in the middle of Pride Rock. No amount of diaper wetness can take her away from being Nala during that precious moment of play. Nothing can distract her.
When she became flower girl for the first time, she was 100% present from the time she wore her dainty white dress to the moment she walked down the aisle. She didn’t think of Peppa Pig or Dinosaur Train. She was a flower girl that very moment, and that was all that mattered. 😍
How I wish I can be like that in my every conversation with my husband, my parents, or my friends. How I wish I can be as absorbed as her during my “me times” so I can truly relax my mind and body.
While I can keep on justifying that multitasking is necessary to survive as a work-at-home and helperless mom, I know how important it is for my daughter that I am physically, mentally, and emotionally present with her. What’s the use of staying with her if my mind is 50% away?
We, adults, think that we have so much to teach the little ones, but if we look closely, there are a lot of life lessons we can learn from children. Mindfulness is one of them, and it’s definitely not an easy one. It’s probably harder for parents trying to juggle work, family time, and personal endeavors. If we succeed at learning and mastering it, our mindfulness can do so much not only for our physical and mental well-being but also for the development and emotional stability of our child.
So no matter how challenging it may be, I try my best to focus on the present, one little task at a time. I owe it to my daughter. I owe it to myself.