I’m currently reading Mindful Birthing by Nancy Bardacke to help calm my nerves about the labor & delivery process. I used to work at a center where she would teach a class on the same topic, and at that time in my life, pregnancy was one of the furthest things from my mind.

Now, the reality is approaching and I want to be as mentally and emotionally prepared for it. I can’t think of a better way than practicing mindfulness.

One key thing about mindfulness meditation practice is non-judgment. It’s the act of not reacting to situations and instantly labeling them as “good” or “bad,” but rather just letting something be. As the book describes, “Because mindfulness allows us to take a step away from our stories, we are less likely to get caught up in an endless loop of painful judgments about either ourselves or others…makes it possible to see that we are not our thoughts.” By letting go and living in the space of what happens around us and how we interpret it, it becomes easier to simply observe and be in the present moment.

That space is a place to be okay with whatever situation arises, and handling it without attaching a feeling to it. This is especially important when things may not go according to plan.

A few days ago, I was feeling stressed out and overwhelmed. I even found myself reacting to stories others told me, and started internalizing them. I began to carry the same anxiety and stress that they carried, and it just made me feel even more down.

Reading the section on non-judgment (and taking an hour nap!) helped me to “reset” and see my day as just that– another day in my life that I am living. Because of this, I’m able to own my interpretations of situations better, give the benefit of the doubt, and be kinder to myself and others. By simply reminding myself that “this too shall pass” helps me be more forgiving about the situation, and is just another gentle reminder that we don’t need to suffer if we don’t want to.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *