Mindfulness for Teens: 5 Myths about Mindfulness

6215248009 ddc100cb9e z 1Mindfulness. Usually when people hear that word, they immediately think of silent, still meditation. This isn’t all that mindfulness has to offer, though. Mindfulness for teens, adults, or anyone of any age has an immense amount of benefits and can be practiced in many different ways! There are many myths surrounding mindfulness that it’s obscuring the potential benefits of mindfulness for teens and others. Psychology Today recently published an article explaining the myths of mindfulness.

Myths about mindfulness practice

Practicing Mindfulness Is a New, Weird Concept
Practicing mindfulness has been around for hundreds of years. Yes, it used to be confined to religious practice–like buddhism–but as more scientific evidence comes out about its beneficial aspects, it has branched out. Mindfulness is all about being aware of the present moment, not being far off in the land of tomorrow, next week, or next year. It’s not an “out-there” idea to think being aware of the present is important.
Mindfulness Is Strictly Religious
This may have been the case years and years and years ago, but no longer. Mindfulness for teens and others is about getting in touch with yourself and your surroundings–if you want it to be about religion, it can be, but in no way does it have to be about religion.
Mindfulness Is “Weak”
People often assume that people practice mindfulness to let things go, which is associated with not taking a strong position or taking a stand. This is wrong. While mindfulness can help someone let go of stressors and worries, it is also about seeing reality as it is. Recognizing your feelings and why you feel that way specifically. It’s giving you a deeper understanding of yourself–which I think is the opposite of weak.
Mindfulness Means You Can’t Plan
Yes, mindfulness is all about being in touch with the present–but that’s not all it is. Humans are forward-thinkers, there’s no way to get rid of that and we wouldn’t want to. Mindfulness is a way to declutter your thoughts and see pathways you might’ve not seen before. For example, let’s say your teen failed a test; if they’ve been practicing mindfulness, they may be able to better identify what went wrong, such as study techniques that didn’t work for them.
Mindfulness Equals Meditation
This is the most popular misconception about mindfulness for teens and others. One can practice mindfulness in any situation: eating an apple, playing with your child, taking a walk. Practicing mindfulness is simply tuning into the present moment and staying focused on what’s happening there and now–not somewhere distant or far off.

Mindfulness for teens can help many issues

Mindfulness for teens has the power to relieve stress, pain, and more. Teens often are faced with a large amount of anxiety with school, friends, family, extracurricular activities, etc., so mindfulness for teens is a great tool to have in their brain toolbox when things get overwhelming.

Trails Carolina can help

Trails Carolina is a wilderness therapy program for struggling teens, ages 10-17. Our students commonly deal with issues such as depression, anxiety, ADHD, trauma, and other behavioral challenges.
For more information about Trails Carolina can help your struggling student, please call 800-975-7303 today!
Image source: Flickr user – bigmikeyeah

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Jeremy Whitworth

As Executive Director at Trails Carolina, a leading wilderness therapy program for youth and teens, I oversee operations and collaborate with our leadership team. Since 2022, I've also hosted the Common Ground Podcast for parents: https://trailscarolina.com/common-ground-podcast/ With a background in Wilderness Leadership and Experiential Education, I've managed adventure-based therapeutic programs across the US and Canada. My experiences in competitive athletics and adventure sports have honed my leadership, risk assessment, and decision-making skills, which I apply to running a successful business like Trails Carolina.

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