“I always try to remember that I’ll be the best me I can be if I prioritize myself.” – Michelle Obama

Mindfulness is the quality or state of being conscious or aware, and it’s something each of us is capable of practicing in our lives at any age. We live in a highly anxious time, our worries trained on what might happen next. The future is always uncertain, but perhaps more so now than ever with the dual pandemics of COVID-19 and racial inequality raging around us. Being able to bring ourselves back to each moment as it unfolds, to a state of calm and inner-peace, is one of the best tools we have to take care of ourselvesand each other.

animated black woman sitting in a cross-legged yoga poseWe see all around us how our young people are struggling right now with losses on many fronts. As parents or mentors, we have the power to guide youth toward a more mindful way of coping with these unprecedented challenges with simple strategies that link breath, movement, and the senses. Engaging in mindfulness can teach youth how to manage stress, regulate emotions, focus on tasks, and develop a more positive outlook on life and themselves.

Adults play an important role in helping youth cultivate mindfulness, but in order to care for others, we must care for ourselves. We need our own mindfulness practice. As Michelle Obama has said, “I always try to remember that I’ll be the best me I can be if I prioritize myself.” When we practice mindfulness regularly as adults, we experience a host of benefits that can include increased resilience, patience, and sense of wonder for life that serve not only ourselves, but also everyone around us.baresoul logo

In the spirit of cultivating a mindfulness practice and strengthening relationships across our communities, MENTOR Virginia is partnering with BareSOUL Yoga & Wellness to provide a Day of Well-being on April 18—a time for all of us to focus on self-care in order to support our care of others. Through eight mindfulness sessions, all led by experts, this virtual event will include opportunities to:

  • Learn more about the benefits of mindfulness for adults and youth
  • Practice various mindfulness strategies for all ages and abilities including laughter, meditation, chair yoga, sound meditation, breathwork, and story time 
  • Involve the whole family in a shared (and fun!) practice of mindfulness

Participants in the Day of Well-being will have the flexibility to join any or all of the eight sessions, which are 35-45 minutes in length. Sessions are appropriate for all ages, body types, and accessibilities. Registration is $25 per household, and you can participate solo or have the whole family join in! View the full schedule here.

BareSOUL Yoga & Wellness believes that building healthy intrapersonal and interpersonal relationships are vital to our overall well-being. “We are excited to support the mission and vision of MENTOR Virginia as they continue to provide guidance and resources for the development of healthy, supportive youth and adult relationships in our community through this Day of Well-being,” said Ashley Williams, founder of BareSOUL Yoga & Wellness.two adults and one child sitting in yoga poses on mats

When we live mindfully, we live with an openness and compassion toward others that enables us to build deeper, more purposeful relationships and to find joy in seeing through the eyes of others. The only way we will be able to overcome the challenges of our time is in relationship to one another, by investing in and building communities of connection and support. At MENTOR Virginia, that’s exactly what we hope to foster for young people across the Commonwealth every day in our work.