What can taking five minutes to do “no-thing” with your kids do for you?

Posted on April 4, 2016

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In my book, The “Perfect” Parent, 5 Tools for Using Your Inner Perfection to Connect with Your Kids, I offer a time-tested tool, Take Five, where I encourage parents to take five minutes a day to do nothing with their children. For five minutes, pause every errand, every to-do task, every recurring thought, and just hang out with your child doing no-thing! Just be present with your kids, open, aware, and relaxed in each other’s company. Hold hands, stare into nature, look at trees, flowers, or the sky, and really feel the shared space in quiet, with no agenda.

When I’ve taught this tool in my parenting workshops, the response has been both gratifying and touching. Many parents say that the quiet minutes sparked important conversations about their children’s internal fears that would not have surfaced had they not dedicated this time to simply be with each other. Other parents of younger children say that they just sit and cuddle with their kids, laugh, or answer innocent questions like why the sky is blue or where do birds live, or is sushi tasty even though it looks gross. Besides being popular with the parents, this tool is an absolute hit with kids. If parents forget, kids nudge and remind them that they need to Take Five!

Some parents also report back that they have had moments where they themselves feel very peaceful and cannot explain how wonderful Take Five is. Just yesterday one of those parents sent me this video saying, “This is what Take Five does for me. Thank you for teaching me the value of 5 little minutes with each of my sons every day.”

Truly, when we allow ourselves to be touched by the underlying pure, innate vibrations of love that connect parent and child, we share sacred space with them. It’s a quiet space that embraces our physical self. An expansive space that nurtures our intellect, our emotions, and our unconditional love and trust with our children. And it happens by doing no-thing.

Even though it may last only for a minute, this feeling of oneness—depicted so beautifully in this video—can deepen our connections with our children and in a single moment can gift us with the love of ten lifetimes. So don’t just take the time, but make the time, to tap into this feeling every single day. What a beautiful gift of love to give and share with our children.

Special thanks to my friend Catherine Schwarzbaum for sharing this video.

In Joy,