Lady carrying baby while walking on a beach

Mindfulness practice with babies

Taken from our Barefoot Beach Babies Guide course

Creating a gentle warm welcome for babies 

Babies are sensitive to their environment, particularly in the first three months of life when they are making their transition from the womb to the world. They are in a process of adapting and it’s important to be mindful of making their experience feel loving and welcoming. Babies are learning about the world every second. They are listening, observing, feeling. Making a baby’s entrance into the community as gentle and nurturing as possible is so important to make them feel safe which is why we recommend babywearing for classes as it literally creates a cocoon from outside the world giving babies time to emerge slowly and gracefully. Slowing everything down for babies is important. Babies are never in a rush, Time has no meaning for them as they are present in the moment. The more we can slow down to match this presence the more we can connect with our babies, build trust and understanding and enjoy the moment and experience unfolding.

 

Rudolf Steiner – The child as a spiritual being

The work of Rudolf Steiner recognises the infant as a spiritual being. Babies need unhindered time without the pressure of achievement to create space for spiritual development.

The Steiner approach to early childcare centers around many principles but in relation to BBB, one particularly important one is the provision of warmth and protection for babies. This is why babywearing is such a nourishing activity as it provides protection and warmth allowing babies’ senses to open gently without shock or startle through his/her caregiver’s body, gentle words and gestures. Talking to babies and telling a baby what is about to happen helps him/her to prepare and be open to a new experience without it being overstimulating.
Rudolf Steiner says of the child in the first three years;

“The first two and half years are the most important of all….During this time the child has the gift of being instinctively aware of everything that goes on around it, especially as regards to people who come into daily contact with it…Everything that takes place in its environment imprints itself on its physical bodily form…so that our behaviour will influence its disposition to health or disease for the rest of its afterlife”

An infant, says Steiner, begins her life in a dreamlike state. Her consciousness, meaning her perception of being a part of the outer world, is sleeping. Growth during the first three years of life involves a gradual awakening of consciousness and emotions. Steiner refers to this gradual process as “incarnating,” which means “coming into the body” or into life on earth. Steiner felt that in order to successfully reach their potential, infants should be allowed to “awaken” at their own pace, without interference from “unnatural” sources. This does not mean that babies don’t enjoy or benefit from stimulation, just that it should be gentle and baby-led.

According to Steiner, infants’ sense impressions “ripple, echo, and sound” throughout the whole of their bodies. This is why creating a flow in babies’ day can help them feel calm and connected and not overwhelmed. Being in nature provides the perfect relationship for this to happen as the senses are stimulated in a way that feels natural to the baby rather than from an artificial source such as plastic toys or flashing lights. We want to move away from “hurrying” and making babies “busy”.

“A sense of being sheltered, protected and stable provides the foundation on which a child may develop self-confidence and trust in existence. How is this sense of shelter and comfort conveyed? Through tender care and gentle touch and by handling the child in a mood of unhurried peacefulness and love”-Steiner

Emmi Pikler

Another advocate for gentle nurturing care was Emmi Pikler.

Her principles included;

  • Exquisite presence and attention to the child’s signals during caregiving, encouraging her active participation
  • Ample opportunity for free movement
  • Astute and careful observation

All of these encourage a sense of mindfulness towards the baby.

The Sacred Art of Observation -Baby gazing

Deep observation takes us to the heart of being with a baby. We experience a connection. Something changes and grows within us as we silently observe another. We simply witness another without judgment, comparison, or evaluation. We simply connect and feel the “whole person” We can tune into the essence of the baby and truly receive them as they are in that moment. We are simply being with our babies. Noticing their small movements, gestures and ways of being, We are receiving babies just as they are. There is no need to fix or resolve. We are tuning into our baby’s hearts.

How to do it

Breathe
Be Still
Observe with no judgment
Witness without interpretation
Experience the wonder of what is before us
A beautiful new life

If you would like to train with us click here.

 


About Blossom & Berry

Blossom & Berry offers expert training, support & resources on baby massage, yoga and parent and baby wellness for professionals & parents across the world.

Blossom & Berry training is designed to give you everything you need to succeed. It gives you a complete teaching practice and mentorship program in a box.

Our training is the most comprehensive teacher training and business package on the market with no restrictions on what you can do and no ongoing licence fees ever.

I would love to invite you to join my network of over 1000 teachers across the world sharing the benefits of nurturing touch and connection with parents and babies.” Gayle Berry – Master trainer and international expert on baby massage and yoga, founder of Blossom & Berry.

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