Wiser on Wednesday: Mindfulness

August 25, 2021, 1:00-2:30pm

Patrice Powers-Baker and Dr. Roseanne Scammahorn (contact info at end)

Ever feel stress? Even before the arrival of COVID-19, stress is identified as a significant health problem for Americans. Not only do we need to care for health and wellness when there is an illness, but we also need to practice preventive care to stay well physically, mentally, and emotionally. As you all know, OSU Extension, Family, and Consumer Sciences (FCS) promote healthy living. Along with topics like healthy eating and exercise, mindfulness has gained recognition as part of a healthy lifestyle in the United States. We invite you to join Patrice and Roseanne as they offer an overview of the science behind the art of mindfulness and the health benefits of stress reduction. This session will utilize mindful relaxation tools to live a more conscious, less stressed, and healthier life.

Links to resources from the session:

  • Handout: Mindfulness Ideas and Activities 
  • Daily Intention, University of Delaware
  • Happify Video: Why Mindfulness Is a Superpower: An Animation. Narrated by Dan Harris, Animation by Katy Davis, December 2015
  • Happify Video: How Mindfulness Empowers Us: An Animation Narrated by Sharon Salzberg, animation by Katy Davis, January 2016
  • Using Technology:
    • blog on What Mindfulness App Should I Use?
    • handout on apps from the OSU Health Plan Health Coaching team
    • Healthy Minds Innovation app
    • Mindfulness Practices, Wexner Medical Center, Ohio State University
    • 5-3-1 (not the exact version we used but another good one)
  • Mindful Wellness Team, OSU Extension, Family and Consumer Sciences
  • Mindful Wellness curriculum, OSU Extension Publications

Links to 2020 online presentations:


Today’s presenters:

Patrice Powers-Barker, CFLE (Certified Family Life Educator), Family and Consumer Sciences Educator, Ohio State University Extension, Lucas County. powers-barker.1@osu.edu 

Dr. Roseanne Scammahorn, Family and Consumer Sciences Educator, Ohio State University Extension, Darke County. scammahorn.5@osu.edu 

Mindful Mindset – mini-lessons for students

This page shares links to the topics we’ve talked about during online mini-lessons, while school (and work) was still virtual in winter 2021 and then in person later 2021 and now through the current school year.


JustBreathe is a small, simple graphic to help you sync your breathing. Watch and follow with your inhales and exhales.

Mindful Breathing: Roberto P. Benzo, Mayo Clinic including various breathing audio files including a short “3-minute mindful breathing for the daily journey

Learning to Keep Calm Handout (includes 4-7-8 Breathing)

Mindfulness Practices 

Ohio State University, Wexner Medical Center Mindfulness – free practices 

Three Senses Mindfulness Activity for Kids, Teens and Adults

Lesson for Athletes, their coaches and supporters


What Mindfulness App Should I Try? 

Short list of Meditation Apps

blue wall with quote by Jon Kabat-Zinn


Set Intention for the day

From Headspace – Set an Intention with this mini-meditation series, guided by Andy Puddicombe. Let’s set a clear, actionable intention for this week. Less than 4 minutes.

Body Scan

Guided Meditations, UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center

Additional Links


Traditions ….useful or beautiful?

“If you want a golden rule that will fit everybody, this is it: Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.”  William Morris made this recommendation at an art and design speech in 1880.

As part of my holiday motto, “This is Good, This is Enough” I rotate different traditions like decorations and recipes from year to year.  I don’t want to feel obligated to do everything every year because it won’t be enjoyable.  I ask two questions to my immediate family:

  1. What is one favorite recipe that you would miss if it was not on the holiday table?
  2. What is one favorite event that you would miss if we did not do it before the end of the year?

These questions have worked for us because I use them with less than five people. Of course, this technique might not be easy if I were to ask my large extended family and kin.  I might get too many different answers to fulfill all the favorites!  One advantage of  “voluntary kin” is that we can create brand new traditions.

Traditions can be a very valuable connector for families. Traditions and customs can provide a sense of roots and closeness.  As families grow and change and age, some practices may not fit.  If traditions come across as mandatory, inflexible or unwarranted, they will not likely provide as many benefits.  There is value in learning more about traditions, evaluating them and deciding if they need refreshed.

What are some other ways to determine and evaluate traditions?  Cornell University Extension offers a chart with 10 statements about the holidays to help you clarify your values and make decisions about where to spend time and energy.

plastic display tree with gumdrops decorating the branchesFrom their suggestions, I can label one of our household traditions as an invitation for family laughs and fun memories.  For me, it was a happy memory to have a plastic gumdrop tree on our table since my grandma had one at her house and my mom had one also.  We added a generation of laugher to that memory the year my young daughter admitted that she thought our “family tree” meant the holiday gumdrop tree.


My holiday wish:  have no traditions in “your houses that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful”.  Or better yet, celebrate both useful and beautiful traditions!