Under increasing pressure to excel in school and maintain a certain image on social media, today’s kids are prone to unhealthy stress levels. Mallika Chopra—daughter of Deepak Chopra—has a solution for the young and overwhelmed: Just Feel, her second self-help book for children, this one with a focus on social and emotional intelligence.
Chopra tells Parentology among her goals for Just Feel is giving kids tools to understand and deal with their thoughts and beliefs. “To recognize it’s totally normal to have a range of emotions,” she says. “And to be aware of the [resulting] physical ramifications, and have techniques to use during tough times.”
Just Feel promotes wellness similarly to its meditation-based predecessor Just Breathe (Running Press Kids; August 2018). That tome, geared towards ages eight to 12, taught children how to use meditation to lead healthier, happier lives.
Just Feel speaks directly to its young audience. Using easy-to-understand language along with fun and colorful illustrations, Chopra guides her young readers through handling a range of emotions so they can develop the resilience and grit necessary for success.
Since many kids nowadays are “overscheduled” with school, extracurriculars, and their social lives, they often have no time to “discover who they are,” Chopra tells Parentology. Just Feel helps them tune in.
From the Wellness Expert Herself
The inspiration for Just Feel stems from Chopra’s experience teaching meditation to elementary and middle schoolers throughout the US. As she traveled around the country, Chopra spoke with many parents and teachers about their child-rearing concerns. The need to help blossomed. “I felt the urgency to write these books because I was interacting with so many families and saw that they were really seeking some sort of resource to help both parents and kids.”
Just Feel features several simple yoga and meditative exercises from Chopra’s classroom sessions, including “Four Breaths with My Fingers.” The minute-long exercise helps kids calm themselves in moments of frustration and panic.
Other exercises help readers navigate emotional experiences and physical wellbeing. Others encourage kids to build connections with trusted adults, whether that be a parent, relative, caretaker, teacher, counselor, etc.
Inspired by Kids, For Kids
Chopra looked to her own family — she has 11-year-old and 19-year-old daughters — as a resource for her Just series, to ensure the issues she was writing were accurate and relevant to kids today.
While Just Feel can be enjoyed by parents and kids together, Chopra recommends kids read it solo. “What I’ve found is sometimes just setting it sit on their bedside table often intrigues them to pick it up, and flip to a page and try something.” Chopra has found kids tend to be more open to the book’s lessons this way.
Chopra will soon have additional opportunities to test this theory. A third Just book set to focus on boosting kids’ self-confidence and self-esteem, will round out the series.
Chopra’s other books include Living with Intent, 100 Promises to My Baby, and 100 Promises to My Child. Unlike Just Feel and Just Breathe, these books speak to parents, caretakers, and other adults about Chopra’s journey to balance her life as a parent, wife and social media entrepreneur.
Just Feel is available for $9.67 online and is one of the few children’s self-help books on the market. Chopra hopes Just Feel will empower her young readers to “[take] responsibility of how [they] choose to react to emotions.”
Children’s Self-Help Books – Sources
Mallika Chopra, Author, public speaker, founder of Intent, co-founder of The Chopra Well