12. Mind-Body Balance Tips & Tricks
When was the last time you maintained a squat for 90 seconds?! It's useful during labor and very tiring if you haven't practiced the position during pregnancy. Learn how to do a squat properly and build your stamina.
Yoga: Focus Your Mind While Strengthening Your Body
The philosophy behind yoga, together with the way it quiets the mind and focuses energy, often leads to deeper awareness and greater self understanding. The practice creates strength and flexibility, cares for aches and discomforts, especially back and neck pain, releasing tension and refocusing energy.
Kegel Exercises: Strengthening Pelvic Floor Muscles
Practicing pelvic floor strengthening exercises (Kegels) can prevent pregnancy incontinence and can make birth easier. When you become familiar with your pelvic floor muscles and increase their strength, you learn how to fully release and relax them.
Labor is much more comfortable when all your muscles are relaxed and free of tension. Specifically, if pelvic floor muscles are fully released, it can prevent vaginal tissues from tearing during the baby's descent. Also, for many women Kegel exercises can enhance sensitivity during sex and their partners claim greater pleasure as well. What's not to love about that?!
Hypnosis / Meditation for Relaxation
Your baby's delivery can be an enjoyable time, even an ecstatic moment for the birthing mama! Learning, practicing and using hypnosis techniques will allow you to be more comfortable and calm during childbirth. Since thoughts create feelings, and feelings create belief systems, when you practice daily with positive guided meditation (hypnosis) tracks, you will be able to maintain a better sense of confidence and orchestrate your baby’s birth in a more joyful way.
If you are a Hypnobabies student, you know how to create hypno-anesthesia. It is generated through deep hypnosis suggestions (practice and use!) that re-train the inner mind to interpret physical sensations differently. For clients who aren't using the Hypnobabies at-home study program but would like to try hypnosis as an additional tool for labor and birth, we recommend a hypnosis session for a Happy Birth from Circle + Bloom.
Many clients enjoy the empowering book, HypnoBirthing by Marie Mongan. It has inspired many to use hypno for an easier labor and birth as well as the creation of the Hypnobabies program. The link includes a digital download so you can get started right away with their signature session, Rainbow Relaxation.
Many free apps exist now to help you practice hypnosis (guided meditation) on a daily basis. You don't need a session specific to pregnancy and birth to enjoy the effects of hypnosis for relief from stress and insomnia. Try anything and everything! We recommend Headspace.
Have you tried yoga nidra yet? If not, what are you waiting for?! Thirty minutes of yoga nidra meditation feels like 2 hours of sleep in your body. Yes. Yes. Yes! It's the perfect afternoon break. Learn about holistic rest programs here.
Tap Your Fears Away!
Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT), also called Tapping, is a method of reducing and eliminating negative emotions such as fear, anxiety, shame and anger. The process is quick, painless and simple to learn, with permanent results. The theory is that an imbalance has occurred in the body due to an energy disturbance, which can be corrected by tapping on the meridians to clear away the negative emotions. It is easy to do and takes little time. You'll feel better so try it out.
Clearing the Energy Disturbances
EFT works by intentionally activating an energy disturbance by thinking about a painful memory or just feeling your feelings. While the energy disturbance is activated, you tap with your fingertips on a set of 10 easily learned acupuncture points in order to clear out the energy disturbance in the affected meridians. As the disturbance gets cleared through the tapping, you will experience your negative emotions actually drain away. When the energy disturbance has been completely cleared, your negative emotions will be gone. You can then think about the memory with no painful emotional reaction! Problems in your life that resulted from the original experience will clear up as well.
It's Important to Stay Focused on the Problem While Tapping
It is essential that the energy disturbance remains activated the whole time you are tapping in order to completely clear it. Therefore, you have to keep your attention focused on the negative feelings while tapping until they are gone. Getting distracted or thinking about two things at once can interfere with EFT working.