I hear it time and time again from new moms.
“I don’t have time to meditate.” I get it. I’ve been there. Thrice. Of course it’s amazing if you can “make time” for your practice, but there are ways to get creative and sneak meditation in here and there throughout your day.
Here are my top ten mom hacks to experience a meditative mind each and every day. Have something to add to the list? Comment below so we can all benefit!
- Get up early. Rise before your children do, sneak out of bed, tiptoe to your sacred space, and hop to it. A meditation teacher I know uses the acronym RPM- Rise, Pee, Meditate. (I like to brush my teeth first so that would be RPBM).
- Breathe long and deep while you’re nursing or bottle feeding your baby. If baby isn’t looking for eye contact from you, that’s your cue to close your own eyes, roll them up and inward to focus at the brow point, and slow down your breath. Inhale while mentally chanting “Sat” (truth), exhale while mentally chanting “Nam” (identity). Use Sat Nam to affirm “Truth is my essence” with each and every breath.
- Floor time, tummy time, toy time. When your baby is safely engaged in something besides YOU, take advantage of the opportunity to turn your own focus inward, even for 1-3 minutes.
- Bath time. When your child is old enough to sit unassisted in the bath but still needs close supervision, be right there in the bathroom with him/her, but take a few moments to find your center with some long deep breathing, breath of fire, right or left nostril breathing, whatever it is you need at that moment.
- Babywearing & Walking. Get baby secured on your chest or back and head for the trails or even the sidewalk. Use Breathwalk meditation techniques to supercharge your walk and harness the power of rhythmic breathing, mantra, and mudra while in motion. Alternatively, chant while you walk!
- In the car! Keep your eyes on the road and your hands on the wheel, obviously! I will often chant in my car, or practice Sitali Pranayama, or Breath of Fire, or Long Deep Breathing on my way to wherever I’m going.
- While cooking. Nothing is so nourishing as food cooked with love and infused with the vibrations of mantra chanting. If you're not ready to chant, just play some on the stereo. Try it!
- My very favorite- Baby’s first nap of the day. Resist the urge to hop on social media or catch up on laundry. Start at the beginning of baby’s nap or you may find you put it off too long and surprise, nap’s over. With baby snugly and safely down for a nap, you can dive in deep with your meditation practice. Warm up first, with basic spinal flex, and basic spinal twist, some life nerve stretch, and maybe some Kundalini crow squats if you’re up for it. Fold up a firm wool blanket, sit up tall, and do your work.
- Before bed. Once the kids are tucked in, you may feel like flopping into bed yourself. That’s understandable! But I encourage you to take a few minutes for yourself. One of my Peace for Postpartum beta testers, Molly, shared this, “There were times that, out of sheer sleep deprivation or exhaustion, I wanted to lie on the floor and do nothing, but once I meditated, the shift was tremendous.”
- Ask for help with the kids so you can make time! When you make your mental and emotional health a priority and set yourself up for success, you will be amazed at the progress you can make!
If you read this far and you’re rolling your eyes because you’ve tried meditation before and found it boring, or if you’re interested in meditation but you have no idea where to start, I want to tell you about Kundalini Meditation as taught by Yogi Bhajan. This, my friends, is where the magic is. Kundalini meditation is where it's at, and it works it's magic in as little as three minutes. It’s perfect for householders (like parents with small children) and it works quickly, directly, and powerfully to shift your consciousness in a big way. There are different meditations to meet your various needs, and that’s what I love the most. In my Peace for Postpartum online meditation course, I’ve compiled the very best meditations for overcoming the unfortunately common postpartum challenges like moodiness, depression, anxiety, rage, birth trauma, and insomnia all into one easy to navigate online platform. The course contains over 20 meditations, my favorites collected over 10 years of working with moms, and has received rave reviews from participants.