Teen Talk: Mindfulness 
Teen Talk. Photo of teens laughing together.
Hey teens, let’s talk! 

I'm Taylor, one of the Youth Services librarians at Aurora Central Library.  
Cartoon Taylor  
Each month at the Aurora Public Library, I cover a variety of topics for teens. This month’s blog on mindfulness.  
Swing by the Aurora Central Library's teen area to browse books, resources, and activities related to the monthly topic. 

Artwork of person meditating in center with colorful surroundings

Mindfulness and meditation have become buzzwords over the last few years and for good reason—it works, it’s free, it’s simple, and anyone can do it. The COVID-19 pandemic has affected us all and altered the way we do life. Slowing down and remaining present is now more essential than ever to our overall well-being.  

Let’s dive in  what is mindfulness? 

“Mindfulness means maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment, through a gentle, nurturing lens.  

Mindfulness also involves acceptance, meaning that we pay attention to our thoughts and feelings without judging them—without believing, for instance, that there’s a “right” or “wrong” way to think or feel in a given moment.  

When we practice mindfulness, our thoughts tune into what we’re sensing in the present moment rather than rehashing the past or imagining the future.” 
 (Source: Greater Good Magazine)

Quote on yellow background. Text: We have a finite amount of energy to spend every day before becoming exhausted. Mindfulness helps you use your energy wisely, spending it on situations, people, and causes that bring you the most joy, meaning and peace. By Thich Nhat Hanh
Read these articles about the power of mindfulness in daily life:
- How I Became a Mindfulness Convert
- Benefits of Mindfulness
- How to Practice Mindfulness: 11 Practical Steps and Tips

Graphic showing impact of mindfulness

I only recently got into meditation and mindfulness. I had heard a lot about the practice. I had heard about the benefits, but I still was resistant. It felt too easy or like it wouldn’t make much of a difference. About eight months ago I started incorporating deep breathing meditation before bed to help with my insomnia. I would play some ocean sounds or thunderstorms on my phone and practice deep breathing for twenty minutes while lying in bed. The results were instant and long-lasting. 

Since then, whenever I have started to feel overwhelmed or anxious I’ll try to remember to step aside and take a couple of deep breathes to re-center myself. I can feel my body relaxing and the tension leaving after a few breathes. It’s amazing! 

Three months ago I started reading up on mindfulness. I was surprised to find how simple and transformative the practice was. It sounds so simple—pay attention to the present moment, pay attention to how you feel, your surroundings, etc. 

The area of my life where I was able to see immediate changes was with eating. When practicing mindful eating you have no distractions, savor each bite, and fully engage with the act of eating and the food in front of you. 

What is most important about mindfulness is that you don’t have to be perfect and it is something that you continue to practice and grow with. I hope that you will consider incorporating mindfulness into your daily life and giving meditation a try. I have found it to be more beneficial than I thought. 

Quote on yellow background. Text: You need to wake up from your autopilot mode. You have to live deeply and with more awareness so that you can be attentive to each moment. By Thich Nhat Hanh 

Explore these free apps for guided meditations and mindfulness practices:
Smiling Mind – FREE app 
- Insight Timer – FREE app (pay for more access) 

Check out these books related to mindfulness and meditation:


Check back in April for our next Teen Talk! 

Join me every Thursday at 4 p.m. for our weekly Teen Hang at Aurora Central Library (14949 E. Alameda Pkwy.). I'd love to meet you and hear about what topics you’d like featured.   

Taylor written in cursive
Posted by [email protected] On 01 March, 2022 at 12:29 PM  

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