Advice for New Parents

Advice for New Parents

14 June 2022 • Words by Karla Pretorius 2 mins

It is wonderful that you are reading this blog! You are already showing such a commitment to preparing for this transition. And that is exactly what it is – a major life transition. Of course, you will feel various emotions, which is totally normal and expected. You might feel scared of what is expected of you and what it feels like to have another being in the home. As adults, we can learn a thing (or five) in the way we work with children.

Five Bits of Advice for New Parents

Less is more

Have you ever bought an expensive gift for a nephew or niece, and they were more excited about the shadow of the leaves? Babies experience the world and everything in it for the first time…ever. You can do with fewer toys and “must-haves” and more calming music for the night and active imagination for the day. Try some of these sleep stories from Moshi: click here!

Teamworks makes the dream work

If you have a partner, ask for their help when needed. Or ask a family member or friend if you need a break. It is the most challenging yet rewarding job in the world. But you need a support system. “It takes a village to raise a child” is a saying that should become your mantra. 

Be kind to YOURSELF

Being a mom doesn’t mean you have to “let go” of all your hobbies—schedule time for yourself where you focus on what you want to do for the day. Many parents of newborns often feel that every waking moment should be spent with their child. Although this is a beautiful gesture, it will almost certainly push your “burnout boundary,” which is not good for you, your child, or your family. Take care of yourself! 

Realistic expectations

Your house will be messy, the dishes will pile up, and the garbage will need to be taken out. Life will be different, and to help yourself manage your expectations, try and change the goal. You have brought an incredible little being into the world and now have the privilege of enjoying this bundle of smiles for years to come.

Mindful moments

We can learn so much from our babies. They are extremely present in each moment, something we often go to meditation or yoga classes to acquire for a few minutes. When your child is born, try and see if you can meet their gaze and wonder at the details of the world. You might be surprised that slowing down can create more opportunities to connect.

According to Potharst et al. (2017), being a mindful parent can help regulate and alleviate stress as well as being more attentive to their baby and their own needs. This study examined the benefits of meditating with your baby.

You are doing a fantastic job, just staying awake and reading this. You will be exhausted during the first few years, but you will also experience love like no other—unconditional love and, in every essence, part of you. Enjoy the special moments!

​​Potharst, E. S., Aktar, E., Rexwinkel, M., Rigterink, M., & Bögels, S. M. (2017). Mindful with Your Baby: Feasibility, Acceptability, and Effects of a Mindful Parenting Group Training for Mothers and Their Babies in a Mental Health Context. Mindfulness, 8(5), 1236–1250.

Karla Pretorius

A registered counselor with a MA in Psychology. Co-founder: AIMS Global & Leadership at: Augmental