A mindful mum: the lowdown
What is a mindful mum? And how do I become one? Here’s what you need to know
We all want to be the best mum we possibly can be and be calm, serene and in control at all times. It’s a big ask of anyone, but there are some things you can practice to help you find your inner zen, by becoming a mindful mum.
What is a mindful mum?
Chances are that someone you know would have bestowed the virtues of ‘mindfullness’ on you. Simply put, the idea of mindfulness is about training your mind to focus on the present moment instead of the distraction of getting caught up in what has gone on in the past or may happen in the future. The art of mindfulness teaches you to recognise what needs your attention in the present moment. There’s even a handy app called Headspace which enables you to do mindfulness anywhere at any time.
How can I become a mindful mum?
We’ve come up with some ideas and tips to help you get in the mindset of a mindful mum.
Quality always trumps quantity
The old idea of less is more is a key part of becoming mindful. It’s great to busy with your little one, but if your day becomes a series of hurrying from one activity to the next, you probably aren’t spending the quality time you could be with your little one. ‘It could be much more productive to cut back on the number of activities, focussing on less and having some quiet, quality time with your baby at a set time each day.
As much as you might enjoy playing with the trains with your little one, reading a book or building a Lego tower together, it’s not unusual for your mind to wander to other things, whether practical things you need to do or thinking about something you’re looking forward to doing. So to avoid this, set a reminder on your phone to go off every 3-4 minutes to allow you to switch your attention back and refocus on your quality time with your little one. It may sound mad at first but trust us for the first few times you alarm goes off we bet you’re thinking about something other than just enjoying playtime.
Lock in the memories
With a little one, bathing them, reading to them, feeding them all become everyday tasks you go through, probably without giving them a second thought. But take time out to focus on being really mindful about these moments as they are some of the most precious memories you will build of your baby. The way your little one splashes in the bath water and how soft their skin is will stay with you forever.
Focus and relate
If your baby’s crying continuously, hold them close and walk around the room. Pay attention to your posture and breathing. Your breathing may have become shallow if you’ve become anxious about the amount your baby is crying. Instead, focus on that gorgeous smell babies have, their little hand gripping on to you for comfort and focus on taking longer breaths which will make you feel calmer and relay a sense of calm to your baby. This is because deep breathing tells your nervous system that you are safe, which helps your body start to regulate.