Balancing Energy during the Childbearing Year
Our bodies are made to “fuel and burn,” constantly loading up and expending energy. With the increasing demands of pregnancy, finding balance in the energy system becomes even more of a challenge. The following tips will help balance energy for the health and wellbeing of both mom and baby:
1. Balancing Energy in the Physical Body
To balance energy in the physical body, there are three key elements, nutrition, exercise and rest. Drinking water and getting the nutrients you need will keep your body properly fueled for activity. Our bodies are made to move. Moderate exercise throughout the day helps keep the energy flowing through our bodies. Try to find ways to exercise throughout the day at moderate levels of intensity. And include rest into your daily routine. During rest, the body is able to “recharge” itself, bringing more energy into the body for optimal functioning.
2. Balancing Emotional Energy
Emotions are meant to flow through us not be held within us. Whenever you notice that you are feeling angry, agitated, or stressed out, stop whatever you are doing and focus on the breath. Try to figure out where your emotions are coming from and bring your attention back to the breath. Breathing is a powerful relaxation tool for helping to reduce the negative effects of stress on the body.
By breathing deeply and slowly, you are stimulating the parasympathetic nervous system that helps to calm our bodies. In addition to feeling less anxious, you will also help to conserve your energy for more important things like growing a healthy baby. Remember you come into this life with a breath and leave this earth with a breath, but it is how you breathe in between that makes all the difference.
3. Balancing Spirit
Try to get into a state of consciousness where you are able to focus your mind on one thing, whether is be breathing, walking in nature, listening to music or reciting a mantra that brings a feeling of joy and relaxation like: “Breath in calm, exhale tension.” Some people also find meditating on a word such as “Om,” (the universal sound of the earth spinning in the cosmos) relaxing and energizing. Think of “plugging yourself in,” to bring energy back into the body. Even doing this a few minutes every day will make a difference. Don’t believe me, try it for yourself.
4. Balancing the Mind
We talk to ourselves every moment, whether we are aware of it or not! And what we say has a huge impact on how we experience life. The great Yoga masters talk about the “monkey mind.” Start to become aware of the messages you are sending to your body every day. Keep a small notebook and write down everything you say about yourself out loud. After about a week, look for any negative patterns that you have formed. Once you become aware of your dysfunctional beliefs, you can refocus on more positive aspects of who you really are. If you see patterns that you feel are too difficult to change, seek the help of a trained professional.
5. Practice Forgiveness
One of the biggest drains on our energy systems is not being able to forgive either ourselves or others. Imagine walking through a hot desert with a 50 pound sack on your back. Very quickly you will have very little energy to keep going. When we hold negativity in our energy field, eventually it expresses itself as physical disharmony or dis-ease. Forgiveness allows us to shed the excess weight or energy drain and frees us up for more positive experiences. When you forgive yourself or others, you are not condoning what has been done to you, rather you are acknowledging whatever hurt you and allowing the anger to dissolve. When you forgive you are really helping yourself. Try to turn anger or hurt into compassion. After all, nobody is perfect, not even you and that is okay!
6. Carpe Diem (Seize the Day!)
The past is history and the future is a promissory note, today is the present, a gift to treasure, use it well. Thinking of the past and worrying about the future is literally a waste of energy. Remember you can never revisit the past and what you might envision for the future may never happen. Use the energy you have to enjoy your life right here and now. There are many unknowns during the childbearing year and the more you can “live in the moment,” the better your experience will be through pregnancy, delivery and the parenting journey. Enjoy the ride!