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Being in the Moment: Some Ideas to Help You Achieve It!

PracticinG BeingIn the moment

I recently have been working hard on being in the moment. Sounds easy, right? Everyone is in a moment, but are you really focusing and experiencing what is actually happening?

It seems like these days, everyone is taking a picture, checking their e-mail (on their phones), checking social media (on their phones), planning ahead (what’s for dinner tonight? Next week?, What are we doing tomorrow night, etc.). It is common that people are planning and stressing over things that are possibly going to happen in the future, and then they never do. You spent all that time stressing, when it never even happened!

I am the first to admit, I am guilty of this. I have been slowly working hard on to change this. Here are some things I am doing:

  1. Turn off e-mail and Facebook (any social media) notifications.
  2. Take Facebook (any social media) completely off your phone if needed.
  3. Set certain times to check your e-mail and/or Facebook (any social media).
  4. Check your e-mail and/or Facebook (any social media) once a day. That’s it.
  5. Set a time you will put away your phone for the night. Leave it in a different room, so you are not tempted.

You may not even realize it, but if you work at doing the following things above, it will eliminate a lot of anxiety and stress. Electronics create so much anxiety, it’s crazy to think what our society was like without them. We need to remember that e-mails, messages, tweets, Instagram messages ….  do not need to be responded to ASAP. We have all of a sudden decided it is necessary to respond to everything as quickly as possible. It’s an emergency, it will be known. People will pick up the phone and call.

As part of working to be in the moment, I have started to learn mindfulness and/or meditation. I take that back, I have taken a meditation class and tried hard to meditate daily and I didn’t follow through so well 🙁 I was introduced to some guided mindfulness exercises, which I have found to be much easier for me to use daily. These were the ones introduced to me:

  1. UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center
  2. Free Mindfulness

My favorite is the UCLA. I downloaded it straight to my phone and can access it at anytime. I try to do it 2-3 times a day; morning, afternoon and evening. I like to be guided and some people do not. It definitely is a personal choice. I enjoy the guidance, because it keeps me focused on what I am doing. It’s important to remember, that your mind WILL wander to your laundry list of things to do and that is NORMAL.

I think it is important for every human, wife, mother, husband, father … to do this. Everyone gets caught up with life and we forget to enjoy what is happening NOW. I have discovered this to be even more important, after having two children, staying home, and blogging. It is a struggle to balance all these things. Following the suggestions above and practicing mindfulness, is making everything a bit better 🙂

Taking Care of Mama: Why Self-Care Isn’t Selfish

Taking Care of Mama_

Self-care. Weʼve heard the phrase, but are we actually doing it? Are we letting go of the feelings of “mama-guilt” or thoughts such as “I donʼt have time”? Or, do we feel stressed, tired and maybe, at times, a little resentful of the things we donʼt get to do since we had our sweet little ones? I have felt all of these things and had all of these thoughts. So whatʼs a mama supposed to do?

After my son was born, I felt, to put it lightly, awful. I was so incredibly tired, hormonal and emotional. The newborn stage was the most trying time of my life. All of the focus was on taking care of this little human. I didnʼt even think about taking care of me.

Once we were past the newborn stage, I still felt guilt about leaving baby to do some self-care. I donʼt ever remember my mom getting “me-time”, so why should I? It wasnʼt until a friend described self-care using an analogy that I finally got it. When on an airplane, when the flight attendant is giving safety instruction, they always say “Put your air mask on before helping others with theirs”.

So, how does a busy mom fit in self-care? While Iʼm still learning Iʼd like to share some thoughts and ideas that have been helpful to me for the past 9 months. I have one child, so I know for moms with more than one at home this is a bit more of a challenge. Do your best.

1) Ask for Help

No, really, ask for help. This is something I still struggle with, but Iʼm getting better. I felt so much guilt leaving my baby with my husband to go to an hour Yoga class, or even a walk around the block for that matter. But after the conversation with my friend, I almost had to force myself. I always felt so good after I did, and I felt more present and patient with my son and husband. You donʼt have to leave the house to do self-care, but sometimes itʼs a good idea to get out by yourself for a bit. So, ask your partner, trusted friend, family member, etc. ahead of time if they wouldnʼt mind watching your little one(s) for a short-period of time while you step out. Again, when you are ready, or as ready as youʼll ever be.

2) Focus on Health

Being healthy while caring for your family can be a challenge, especially if the household budget allows only enough funds for health visits for your kiddos. These visits, however, are important, and by taking the time to get an acupuncture treatment, massage, or chiropractic adjustment or any other healing modality you love, you are not only reducing stress producing hormones in your body, but also boosting your immune system and eliminating aches and pains. This not only teaches your kids the importance of taking care of yourself, but also puts your body back in to balance, so time with your children is spent feeling your best.

Food and meal prep can be a challenge as well. However, anything you put in to your body feeds vitality, or feeds stress, anxiety and illness. I use about one to two hours on the weekend (usually a Sunday) to prep some food for the week to make healthy meals quicker to prepare. I have also become good friends with my slow cooker. You can include your kids and have them help, or if you have a baby, you can wear him or her while you prep. It also helps to make sure only healthy options are available for quick meals and snacks so one isnʼt tempted to eat something that wonʼt make you a healthy mama.

3) A Little Goes a Long Way

When it comes to self-care, for me, itʼs not something I have to do daily to feel itʼs effects. If you can make time for 1 acupuncture session a month, great! If you can spend 15 minutes taking a bath uninterrupted, fantastic! Itʼs all about balance.

4) Do Something You Enjoy

Do self-care that makes you feel rejuvenated. If it has been so long since youʼve included some self-care in to your life, here is a list of things you can try:

• Meditation
• Yoga
• A walk outside
• A bath
• Acupuncture
• Massage therapy
• Chiropractic adjustment • Energy work/Reiki
• Counseling
• Reflexology
• Aromatherapy
• Read
• Journaling

Letʼs banish the thought of self-care being selfish and understand that itʼs not a “treat” but a necessity. The love and care a mother gives her child is unlike anything else. How amazing would it be if our children were able to see their mom love and care for herself as well?

About the Author

View More: http://alycarroll.pass.us/stephanie Stephanie Braunwarth is a board-certified Licensed Acupuncturist with a special focus in womenʼs health, fertility and nutrition. Stephanieeducates her patients about the importance of treating the underlying cause of a health condition and encourages them to take an active role in their health.

Stephanie serves patients at Des Moines Acupuncture Clinic in Des Moines.

CAPPA Postpartum Doula Training

World Doula Week is fast approaching!


(Image Source)

I had never heard of a doula until after the birth of Monte and I definitely wish I had the support of a doula with his birth. When I discovered I was pregnant with Amelia, I knew I needed and wanted a doula. The women in the Des Moines area are very lucky with the amount of doulas that are available to help with birth.

During World Doula Week, I am looking forward to sharing with you the awesome resources we have in our area, why you need a doula for your birth, what is involved to become one and an AWESOME giveaway 🙂

For now, I want to focus and share with you an awesome opportunity coming to Des Moines.  Midwest Mom & Wife is hosting a CAPPA Postpartum Doula Training! If you are wanting to become a postpartum doula or are interested in increasing your skills and education, in this field, this is for you.

CAPPA is a pregnancy, childbirth and postpartum organization.

“Since 1998, CAPPA’s mission has been to offer comprehensive, evidence-based education, certification, professional membership and training to childbirth educators, lactation educators, labor doulas, antepartum doulas and postpartum doulas worldwide. CAPPA is proud to provide new and expectant families access to these professionals here. Cappa is a non-profit organization headquartered in the USA, with branches worldwide.”

You will learn:

  • Scope of your Doula Practice
  • How to support parents
  • Breastfeeding support
  • Baby care techniques
  • Calming & soothing techniques
  • Postpartum mood disorders
  • SIDS/Back to sleep campaigns
  • Listening & communication skills
  • Record keeping & contracts
  • Creating & Marketing your business
  • Networking soultions

This whole workshop is going to be AWESOME 🙂

The After Baby Lady, from Michigan, is a certified CAPPA instructor and will be leading our Postpartum Doula Training.

This event will be held May 30th & 31st in Des Moines, Iowa. Location is to be determined! Please share and spread the word!

Please print, post & share the flier!