Helpful Tip: If you are breastfeeding, start to pump early so your partner can help you and do the night feed and/or the dream feed with a bottle.
2. Be fully present in every interaction with your baby.
Babies are extremely receptive to the signals you send to your baby. If you are rushing while changing her because your mind is racing into future planning and emails, the baby will pick up on that agitation. Meditation stills the fluctuations of your thought waves, so you don't live in the past or the future, but remain present. Give your baby your complete attention in the moment, and watch her reciprocate with calmness as she drifts into the night.
3. Practice Pratyahara — a withdrawal of the senses from external stimulation.
Pratyahara is the fifth limb of Patanjali's Yoga, and is crucial for new parents. Too often, I see parents rushing from a Mom's Meetup group, to a music class, and then a visit with the grandparents. As a result, the baby gets overstimulated during the day and misses her naps, making her cranky at night. Slow down. Go within. Rest more in the day.
4. Get outside in nature.
Yoga philosophy teaches us that all of prakriti (the physical world) — from nature, to human body and thought, is made of the same three attributes — sattva (the quality of purity and harmony), rajas (the quality of activity and restlessness), and tamas (the quality of inertia and ignorance). Sattva predominates in nature, so if you breathe pure air and eat pure food, your temperament will be harmonious as well.
We like to ensure that our baby is out of the house for at least a couple of hours in the morning and evening.
5. Mom needs to remember to invest in her own emotional health.
Finally, only a happy parent makes for a happy baby. Particularly for mothers, who have the majority of infant care responsibility during maternity leave. It's incredibly important that mom remembers to make space for her own well-being.
Since this is easier said than done, we have a solid routine for my wife so she can take a break from the baby, and spend time exercising and meditating in the routine below: