LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – It’s Parenting Connection Tuesday and 6 News is here for you with tips, strategies, and helpful reminders from local child development experts on how we can be better parents and guardians.

Today’s topic: Why having “mindfulness” can help children be calm.

According to child development experts, mindfulness is having present moment awareness of how you feel, which helps you to not be overly reactive or overwhelmed by something.

A new study now shows just how important this practice is when it comes to prenatal mothers.

Researchers from the University of California say that infants whose mothers were able to practice mindfulness during pregnancy had healthier stress responses at 6-months-old.

Doctors that were a part of the study say, ultimately, this is the first research to show and prove that parents who are mentally able to practice mindfulness and find success at it, transfer this quality over to their children.

Kendra Moyses, a child development expert from Michigan State University says is something parents want to learn and teach their kids about.

“When you are mindful and something stressful happens, you are then able to do some deep breathing and recognize how you are feeling, without any judgment or without any action, and be able to control and calm down a lot better,” said Kendra Moyses, a child development expert with Michigan State University.

The Michigan State University extension recommends the following for creating a mindfulness routine at home with your kids:

  • Schedule it. Make mindfulness part of your routine.
  • Start small. Begin by trying to add one mindfulness practice at a time to avoid overwhelming yourself or your child.
  • Make it fun. Mindfulness should not feel like a chore, it should be something relaxing that you look forward to doing — and try to find the mindfulness techniques that work for you and for your child.
  • Lead by example. Show your child you are practicing mindfulness too and do it as a family.

Experts say having mindfulness does more than just allow your kids to learn how to calm down too.

In fact, it helps children build skills for social awareness, self-management, strong relationships, and decision-making.