I have been focusing on inner awareness this month. I tried to explain a bit the other day about why I think there’s an important connection to being in tune with ourselves and living a healthy life. Today I’m going to talk about why I think inner awareness is important from the moment you start thinking about wanting to have a baby.
[Note: this can be applied to anything new that you’re facing in life, not just pregnancy, so if you’re not planning a pregnancy, keep reading anyway!]
If you know me, you might be well aware that in the years leading up to my pregnancy I hit a stage in my life that I like to call my “I want one” stage. Every time I saw a baby “I want one” came out of my mouth. What was making this happen? More importantly, did I need to listen to this message right away, or was my brain just preparing me? I took this feeling very seriously but I also knew that we weren’t quite ready to add a third person to our family. Did I just ignore the feeling and go back to life as normal? No, not really. I continued to say “I want one,” and I started looking for signs that the time was right. I’m not usually a follower of signs, but this seemed different.
Being so aware of what I wanted allowed me time to prepare in the way that I wanted to, which doesn’t always happen for people. There are a few keys that I think are important to think about before you begin trying to start a family, and I think that knowing and understanding yourself helps you get there with more ease.
- Understand your fears – This one requires a huge leap inside your head. Your fears aren’t going to just pop out at you like a to do list, you need to dig around for them, and be compassionate and patient with yourself as you do. If you can embrace many of your fears before pregnancy (not all, new fears come up for us everyday in everything we do), you will free yourself to feel so much more receptive and excited about your pregnancy and it will ease the symptoms from the early days all the way through labor and the birth of your child.
- Get Healthy – If you know that you want to change some of your eating and lifestyle habits in order to have your healthiest pregnancy, do this NOW! Shifting your habits does not happen overnight, and it will be much more difficult when you are tired, nauseous, and getting used to the changes that your body is going through without asking your permission. How you treat yourself before you get pregnant has an impact on your baby as well, so it’s a great idea to get started on this early. If you listen to yourself, you will likely know where you find it most important to start. Don’t try to take it all on at once and expect immediate and lasting change. Also, remember that getting support can make the journey easier.
- Forget Perfectionism – You are never going to be 100% ready for any big change in life. Your to do list is never going to be complete. What you need to learn to do is retrain your brain to understand that it’s ok to be a work in progress. This may not seem like an inner awareness thing, but believe me, it is. You can tell yourself that it’s okay to let go of perfectionism, but most likely, somewhere in that beautiful brain of yours a voice is saying, “I’m not ready for what comes next. I have to do this, that and the other before I can move to the next step.” Guess what? This comes back to fear. Fear holds you back from doing what you really want to do, or from doing it without a lot of unnecessary anxiety, because you are scared that if everything is not in place things won’t work out as you planned. Guess what? Things often don’t work out exactly as you plan, but that’s okay! Sometimes they turn out better. When you can release the need for perfectionism, you allow life to happen, and that’s when things can get really exciting.
Peace, Love, and Wellness,