Isn’t it amazing to thinking that your baby is already learning whilst in your womb? 

Your lifestyle, your emotions and your environment will all play a part in your baby’s development.  It’s been scientifically proven that the development of your baby is no longer just down to genetics alone.  Which means the old nature versus nurture debate is woefully outdated. The modern approach is known as the interactionist view.

So what does that mean?

Well, It’s like having two dimmer switches (just like the ones you have on the wall in your lounge), one operates in response to your genetic makeup (nature) and the other one operates in response to your environmental factors (nurture). In certain situations your nature response will be more prevalent and at other the nurture switch will be on and takes the lead.  Your response will greatly depend on your belief in your ability to cope in the situation, your previous life experiences and the beliefs you hold to be true about yourself and the world around you.

What does this means to your baby?

This means that every time you communicate with your baby in the womb, the interaction counts towards their brain development, emotional and physical growth. 

What you do, what you eat, how you exercise, how you respond to situations and what you feel emotionally counts towards your baby’s development.  This is all in addition to your baby’s genetic make up.

Don’t be alarmed by this if you are having an emotionally challenging time right now, or at any point in your pregnancy.  As your baby needs to experience all of the emotions in order to learn, just like they do as children on the outside.

There is a strong connection between how your mind works and your body responds.  Every thought you have impacts on your emotional response, your reaction to a situation, the actions you take and they also impact on your immune and nervous system too.    A good place to start is by taking care of your emotional health. The positive knock on effect to your baby will be huge. 

To strengthen your baby’s braindevelopment, emotional and physical growth:

  • Give yourself time to fully relax and switch off on a daily basis
  • Build on your helpful thoughts about pregnancy, birth and becoming a Mother
  • Take positive conscious actions to bond with your baby in pregnancy

Just 10 minutes of conscious bonding time will raise your oxytocin levels, strengthen your baby’s braindevelopment, emotional and physical growth and help towards your baby’s birth-day.

But before I share our bonding activities with you, I just want to point out that its okay if you are finding the thought of bonding with your baby in advance of their arrival difficult. Some of my clients have felt this way in the past, usually it's due to:

  • Experiencing previous challenging circumstances
  • Having a deep rooted fear of something bound to go wrong
  • Or they just feel strange connecting with their baby as the pregnancy doesn't feel real just yet

Whatever the reason, its okay to feel like this. Focus on the here and now, the past has gone and the future is yet to be written, so keep it simple, and focus on what you can manage today. 

Know that ... Every time you interact with your baby in the womb you are strengthening their emotional, mental and physical development. 

You are also building up oxytocin in your body. Oxytocin is the hormone that helps you relax, feel safe, feel supported and generally feel like everything is just as it should be. This feeling flows through to your baby too.

Here are 10 ways you can both enjoy some beautiful bonding time.

  1. Play your favorite piece of music daily.  See how your baby responds to it.  After 26 weeks of pregnancy your baby can hear sounds outside of the womb as well as feel your feelings.
  2. Watch your favourite comedy box-set on TV or anything that has that ‘feel good factor’ in it.  Belly laughs are great for raising oxytocin and building a strong positive connection with your baby.
  3. Read aloud to your baby, regularly read your favourite poem, story or sing a song to your baby.  You’ll find they respond to this once they are born.
  4. Write a love letter to your baby, expressing your love joy and excitement about meeting them.  This will certainly build the bond between you.
  5. Chat to your baby throughout the day, this may seem a bit daft at first as you may feel like  ‘talking to yourself’ but your not and they are listening.
  6. Take relaxing bubble bath; notice how your baby responds to the water.  Pour water over one side of your bump and then the other.  Does baby play alongwith you?
  7. In the early days of pregnancy you may find yourself placing your hand over your abdomen protectively. At around 6 months your baby will feel your hand stroking your tummy and they are likely to respond by moving.  You may find yourself doing this instinctively.  Imagine your baby, are they smiling, giggling, happy are they calm and relaxed and feeling loved. When your baby kicks, press back with a simple pattern and see if they respond toyou.

All of these things will promote oxytocin levels in both you and your baby.  Remember you need this in abundance for birth. 

Find time for your partner to bond with your baby too, let them read, sing and stroke your tummy; your baby will hear their voice and get to know them. Ready for when they meet on your baby’s birth-day. 

Share your beautiful bonding moments with us and sign up for our FREE 5-Day Mini Birth Preparation Course starting on 21st January 2019

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