5 Everyday Ways I’m Striving to Be a More Mindful Mum

I imagine most of us would like to be a mindful parent. ‘Calm, present, attentive, responsive, engaged, and compassionate’. But we can’t be all of these things all of the time.

In amongst the chaos of a busy schedule, there are many moments when I’m not a mindful parent. Rather than feel bad about the moments I’m disconnected and distracted, I try and set aside a few moments each day to focus on truly connecting with my daughter.

moments for mum

In these moments of mindful parenting I try to connect with my child without being distracted by the phone, the computer or chores.

These are my five favourite ways to find moments of mindfulness.

parenting mindfully

#1. Breakfast together at the table. Most week days we eat breakfast at the table together. During the week this is usually a five minute brief moment. But on the weekend we stretch the moment out with bacon and eggs, pancakes or some other special treat.

#2. An afternoon hour of play and exploration together. I try and set aside time each afternoon to take my daughter to a park or to play in the back yard. It’s our green hour.

‘A green hour is simply a time for families to unplug, unwind, and recharge as they reconnect to the natural world – and to each other’. – Todd Christopher.

#3. Cook the evening meal together. I like to plonk my daughter on the kitchen bench while I cook. I give her a task like peeling the potatoes or washing a few dishes. Dinner takes twice as long to prepare, but I find it’s a nice time to chat about our day and as a bonus she’s naturally learning how to cook.

#4. Dinner together at the table including an after meal board game. This is usually the first moment we connect as a family because my husband leaves for work early, so we savour this moment. We eat dinner together without the TV on and after dinner we play a board game. More recently we’ve started using the after dinner moment to look at artwork or stories our daughter has created at preschool. In the future we’d like to use this time to help with homework.

#5.Bedtime stories. Bedtime story time is actually when my husband becomes the mindful parent and reads three stories. I then have time to catch up with the distractions I avoided over the previous two moments of mindful parenting.

In amongst these moments of mindfulness there’s a whole lot of chaos and distraction. But I don’t think that matters. It’s these moments of mindfulness that matter.

How do you find moments to be a mindful parent throughout your day?


  1. Thanks for sharing this post Tricia and Christie – it’s exactly what I needed to read this morning!

  2. Nice post! I have one 2 1/2 yr old daughter (with another one on the way) and I find it really tricky to balance getting chores done/ getting ready with giving my daughter the attention I feel like she deserves. I feel like she gets too much morning TV but otherwise I wouldnt manage everything :S But I always (usually) turn off the TV before 9am and between 9 and lunch do an outing or activity where I focus on her and give her a lot of attention. Also my husband makes bathtime and bedtime stories a special quiet time for her. Guilt can get in the way sometimes but I agree that you cannot be mindful at all times with other demands on you also. Its all about balance.

  3. Great post – I try to find those mindful moments through the day also. I drive my teenage sons at 5.45 each morning to an early class, the drive takes about 10 minutes each way and they swap who is in the front – we have some great conversations and they really speak to me about what is going on with them, music their liking, the new girlfriend etc.. While their in class I have my mindful time while I take a walk.
    My 7year old’s mindful time comes while he waits to catch the bus in the mornings and as soon as he walks in the door of an afternoon – we snuggle on the couch and talk, read, do homework or sometimes he shows me his new game on my iphone.
    My 11 year old daughter’s mindful time comes as I prepare dinner – she loves to help and wants me to teach her about what I’m doing. We also discuss homework & friends etc.. Also we spend time doing craft together on weekends.

  4. What a wonderful post and food for thought. We have always made bedtime stories a priority for our daughter and normally this is Daddy’s special time but with Uni 2 nights a week and working in the city, he’s often not home in time to do it. We recently introduced asking her after her stories, “what was the best part of your day today?” which she loves.

    I know I am guilty of being distracted by i-devices so will be more mindful of this.

    I am bit of a control freak when it comes to cooking so don’t include her nearly enough. Mind you, she knows how to make ganache and the process of making a cake
    ! LOL!

    We’ve played a board game together after dinner a few times and it is a lovely way to spend 15-20 minutes together before teeth and bed.

    I love the green hour idea and will try to adopt it. Too often the TV comes on as a default.

  5. Lisa Off the Couch Kids says:

    So important for families to unplug and step outside, love the green hour!

  6. Love this post…
    In the early days of our family people told me I was insane to keep our twins up late just so they could eat dinner when Dad got home, but I felt it was important. Now, eight years later it is still important and we structure our evening routine around a late-ish dinner so that we can all eat together on the nights my husband is not on night shift. Just that meal of connect makes a huge difference to our family dynamics.

  7. Kim- Reunite Child Assist says:

    I am one of those crazy busy Mum’s who never seems to have enough time! My mindful moment though, is “cuddle time”. Where all 4 of the kids try to cuddle up to a piece of me, lets face it with 4 someone is going to be cuddling feet! Often reading, or watching TV together. And on the weekend, I make time to play ball or chase or races with them. Would love to fit more in, might have to try a couple of the above suggestions, thanks 🙂

  8. My girls (2.5 and 5) often play a board game with Daddy after dinner while I tidy up the kitchen. It is nice for them to have some special time with him each day and I like that it is a quieter winding down activity rather than the ‘active play’ Daddy-time seems to encourage.

    I love the idea of a green hour. We often have one but making it more conscious would mean it always happens. Thanks for giving it a name. That helps me. 🙂

  9. Beautifully written Tricia!

    You’re right sometimes we have to be mindful and intentional about quality time. I know that I often use the kids behavior as a guide – if they are whiney and clingy I normally put it down to the fact I’m distracted or too busy and they need some mummy time.

  10. Loved reading this article – really made me think about the ways I am a mindful mum to my girls, and reading this list made me feel a lot more reassured about what I do. I like the Green Hour idea, especially with the warmer months approaching when being outdoors in the afternoon is more possible. Thanks for sharing your thoughts Tricia!

  11. Rachael@balanceandbliss says:

    How nice to read how other people connect with their kids.
    We have always had dinner together as a family, no tv, even when it meant eating at 5.30pm when the kids were babies. We have breakfast together (just me and them on weekdays) too.
    The school run is half an hour, so that’s when I hear about their days (on the way home) and sometimes it’s a maths quiz or something on the way there.
    We’ve always had story time before bed; cooking dinner there’s often a helper on hand; a board game with dad after dinner is fairly regular; we try and spend at least one weekend day doing something fun together, and on the other when we need to be in the garden, we look for ways to make the kids a part of it and include them in decisions (where practical!).
    I’m certainly disengaged from them for large chunks of the day, but hopefully it balances out in the end.

  12. I think that idea of the green hour is so important too – although we usually spend most of it apart, in the school grounds after school… I just let my Munchkin run and play and do whatever he likes. It’s so much easier than trying to coax him outdoors at home.

  13. Hi Tricia and Christie, I love the ‘green hour’ idea. We find outdoor play is the ideal way to ‘disconnect’ and really focus on what is important. Some wonderful tips Tricia. I especially enjoyed reading through all of the comments.


  14. Lovely tips. Something I’m really conscience of at the moment. Need to spend more one on one quality time with my kids. I am a SAHM too but it’s so easy to get caught up in all the little things and let these things slide which are so very important.

  15. Simple and elegant. Exactly what kids need.
    Actually, I think the title is wrong. These are best as habits. This is what life is make up of like brushing your teeth and hair and going to be on time. If you have to be mindful about them, you’re missing the point (a little).

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