All of us can benefit from developing better self-care strategies. That’s why ESC’s Junior Scholars team kicked off this fall’s American cultural preparedness workshop series, Super Scholars, with a Meditation and Mindfulness workshop, led by one of our counselors, Elaine! She discusses some of her thoughts on meditation and mindfulness below:
What inspired you to create a Super Scholars workshop about meditation and mindfulness?
Most of my inspiration stems from the fact that I recently started attending meditation sessions and found it so helpful in managing my stress levels or opening up different perspectives on situations, I wanted to share this experience with my students. I think that many of us often leave mental health and wellness behind because we all go through life with so many things that need to be done, so many things that feel more urgent. I wanted to create a space made students bring the topic of mental health to the front of their minds and realize how beneficial it is to carve out time to focus on their own mental wellbeing!
What did you do in the workshop? What did students learn from these activities?
During the workshop, we first focused on what it means to be “mindful” and then explored that through different activities such as mindful eating. This activity was meant to help students focus on the present moment (in this case eating candy), and realize how different something as simple as eating can be if you only focused on it. At the end of the workshop we had a 10-minute guided meditation session where students applied everything they had learned during the rest of the workshop into that meditation session!
How can ESC students incorporate meditation and mindfulness into their daily routines?
It’s easy! Students can set aside 10 minutes in your day (maybe at the start or end of the day) and enter a guided meditation session by using the various meditation apps that exist now. Students can also practice mindfulness in their everyday life just by “being mindful” and staying present when going about their day. To the students reading this, instead of stressing about your upcoming SAT test as you are taking the subway to school, listen to music and appreciate your commute. Observe your surroundings. Acknowledge that you are stressed but don’t dwell on it!
ESC students are fortunate to benefit from their Counselors’ support as they prepare for the changes ahead while abroad at school in America. As application season continues, we hope that all ESC students take time as needed to be a little bit more mindful!