Create a Happy Life That's Sustainable

Hide your kids, hide your wife…wait, wait, this isn’t that type of invasion 😉

Recently, the US Department of Education came out with an article titled “The Positive Effects of Physical Fitness and Self-Care in a Dynamic School Community” about the benefits of mindfulness practices in the classroom. Yep, you read that correctly the first time – the United States Department of Education is studying, implementing, and finding the benefits of meditative and mindfulness practices in the classroom! When the keepers of the domestic status quo start to implement practices that some might consider outside of said status quo, it’s time to pay attention.

And with “Dynamic School Community” in the title of the article, they aren’t talking about the entitled – these practices are being implemented in urban classrooms with many students being English language learners. I’ll admit that when I read the title of the article and hear stories about meditation being brought into the classroom, the first image that comes to mind are of “smart” classrooms offered at privileged private schools with sofas and laptops. However, one can find yoga and meditation now offered at more traditional schools with those old wooden table and plastic chair “onesies” that most of us grew up with…but yeah, there are still laptops (I mean it’s 2016, we’re living in the future). They’re even still singing “The Wheels on the Bus” people, but with meditation – IT’S INVADING OUR CLASSROOMS!! 🙂

All “woo woo” jokes aside, educators are integrating these practices into their curriculum slowly, getting both students and their parents behind these efforts, to truly positive results.

One example of the positive influence of bringing meditation and mindfulness into the classroom is in 16 year old Olympic swimming hopeful, Reece Whitley. While his high school class was observing their daily mindfulness session, some students expressed annoyance at the daily break while others fell asleep (disclaimer: falling asleep can be an occupational hazard when meditating lolz). When asked how he felt about the daily break, Reece indicated he enjoyed the break to “get away from thinking about everything.” This makes sense when one person is academically strong while competing in an Olympic sport at a high level while simultaneously keeping a social life and being a 16 year old kid – compared to the rest of the class who arguably only has to worry about academia and what to wear that day.


Question – which student experience most reflects the “real world” of being an adult and having to juggle a career, kids, health, social life, etc. As a former collegiate swimmer myself, I recognize with Reece and still enjoy time to myself, even if it’s staring at the black line at the bottom of a pool.


Combining mindfulness with modern education may be the best way to prepare the next generation for life in the 21st century world. With all the commitments of the modern world, it makes sense to start people young with how to remain happy and calm when juggling so much. In fact, it makes SO much sense that these practices may become a standard of the future of education in the US.


So when meditating becomes a requirement for the presidency (which currently looks more and more like it should), remember where you read it first 😉


Blessings on blessings,

About The Author

Mental Gymnastics is supported by a collection of like-minded individuals who have daily happiness practices. They will lend their expertise in various facets of life over time, sharing how and what they've implemented in their lives to achieve a sustainably happy life. Mental Gymnastics was started by Sean Yoon McDevitt, who holds a BA in History from the University of Georgia (while competing as a Division 1 Swimmer), an MBA from the University of Oregon, and an International Association of Meditation Instructors Membership.


  1. This is SO cool! Finally going to supply truly valuable knowledge to the next generation. Thanks for sharing this!

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