Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and meditation are two practices that often work even better when you put them together. If your foster child or teen is receiving CBT, find out more about the potential benefits of adding meditation to their daily routines.
Benefits of Combining CBT with Meditation:
One of the dilemmas in any form of psychotherapy is the fact that patients sometimes feel worse before they feel better. It’s natural to be uncomfortable when you’re exploring difficult emotions and changing familiar habits. Meditation can help by encouraging foster children to observe their thoughts without making judgements and reminding them that everything is temporary. Difficult times are easier to bear when you know they’ll soon pass. Mindfulness also helps to relieve stress, so that may help reduce some of the same behaviors and thoughts that your foster child’s therapy is focused on. After all, you’re more likely to feel irritable or overeat when tensions are building up. Most of all, pairing meditation with CBT might help your foster child get better results. It’s like losing more weight because you diet and exercise at the same time.
Strategies for Combining CBT with Meditation for Foster Children:
If you think meditation sounds like it could be a good idea, talk about it with your foster child. Give them choices and let them make their own decisions. Start out with brief sessions of less than 5 minutes in a quiet setting. Encourage your foster child to sit up straight. If they’re too restless to sit, they might prefer walking meditation to help them get started. Be sure to tell your foster child’s therapist about your plans too. That way they can give you their recommendations and be aware of any activities that may affect your foster child’s needs.