Does it seem challenging for your kid to focus be it study or sports or mere talking? Do you have to struggle to get your child to sit & focus without distraction? Does he/ she zone out while doing an activity? Well, these are quite common problems which most of the parents face daily and mix it up with kids being lazy or uninterested in that activity. 

To get aware of these and allow our child to nurture in full potential is what the parents look up to. Isn’t it? Chat on the Mat with Dr. N Ganesh Rao will give you a profound insight of your child’s mind and behavior. He’ll also enlighten you with areas to work upon at an early age enabling them to bloom and manifest in their best versions.

Dr. N Ganesh Rao is a seasoned yoga mentor with several dignified roles and recognitions to his credit. Dr. N Ganesh Rao is an acclaimed author, counselor, yoga therapist, and guide. He also holds prestigious positions in renowned institutions like Kaivalyadhama Lonavla, Mumbai University, Sri University Bhubaneshwar,(Technical Expert) Yoga Certification Board, and Yoga Alliance (USA) to name a few. So let’s hear it from Dr Rao...

hmy: What is being focused or concentrated?
Dr. Rao:
‘Being focused or concentrated’ refers to the capacity of the child to hold its attention on one subject matter for a decently long (maybe 15 to 20 minutes for a child!) time period.

hmy: Do issues related to concentration differ from child to child?
Dr. Rao:
Children by nature are said to be rajasic i.e. restless. This restlessness, translated as a lack of sustained focus on any particular subject, maybe due to the inherent curiosity or inquisitive nature of children.
Thus, a child intrinsically cannot concentrate for long periods. To the extent the subject matter is interesting and is able to hold its attention, the child is concentrated. In other words, in the case of a child (in fact, this is applicable to individuals of any age), the level of concentration is dependent upon the interest of the child in the subject matter. Therefore, issues of concentration differ from child to child based upon differing interests of children.
It may be an error on our part to pass a judgment about a particular child that it does not have concentration. It only means that we have failed to discover what the child is interested in or we have failed to generate sufficient interest in the child as regards the subject matter.

hmy: How strong concentration can be developed from an early age?
Dr. Rao: Children by nature are fun-loving and not as serious as adults. They cannot be forced to visualize or contemplate upon the future consequences of their activities without doing injustice to their basic nature. They mostly dwell in the ‘now’.
Therefore, concentration can be developed in children by making them ‘play’ rather than ‘work’ in the subject matter concerned. It depends upon the ingenuity of parents, mentors, and teachers to make the child ‘enjoy’ what it is doing. Once it starts enjoying the subject matter, it automatically gets concentrated.

hmy: How hyperactive & lazy children can be dealt with?
Dr. Rao: In the case of hyperactive children, their hyperactivity should be harnessed rather than be curbed. Adequate and positive outlets for the expenditure of energy should be provided to them. Physical Sports and Games act as one such outlet.
In the case of lazy children, ideas and ideals may be made use of to stir them from inactivity to activity. Once sufficient interest is generated in these children then they no longer will be lazy. Satsang or the right company of other children may also be fruitful.   
hmy: What is the most essential aspect of a child’s mental development?
Dr. Rao: Personally I think, provision of a strong emotional foundation is the most crucial aspect of a child’s mental development.
The culture and upbringing at home matter a lot but assured emotional support in childhood goes a long way in the future life of the child.

hmy: Any advice for parents?
Dr. Rao:
Parents have to create confidence in the child that they are always unconditionally there for the child no matter what it does or does not do. Everything else is secondary.