Mindset perinatal mental health

Mindset – How it can help when you are an Antenatal Educator

Mindset - just a buzz word or useful for Antenatal Educators and our parents?

Mindset is everywhere - but how does it apply to Antenatal Training and Education?

Mindset in its simplest term is how we think about something and how we perceive the world around us. A deep rooted self belief that can be both conscious and unconscious.

Your mindset determines how you behave, how you learn, when you do or don’t take action, how you interpret and respond to situations. 

Cultivating the correct mindset is important, for our parents as they enter parenthood it can help them build emotional and metal resilience and negotiate challenges with  this new identity. 

For us as Birth workers it can help us build stronger more profitable businesses, create new opportunities and learn new skills easily.

“Mindset” is trending and has been for some time now, the theory being that we can remove the fixed mindset which holds us in one place, and stops us developing and growing as a human. It stops us achieving our dreams, stops us from taking that step. The wrong mindset is very limiting, its basically the voice that says “No” or “I can’t ….., or “I’m not sure..”

Instead we replace the fixed mindset with  the  “growth mindset” which supports us in removing these self limitations to further our  self-improvement and trajectories in life. This voice says “I’m going to try…”, I’m getting better”, “Why not?” 

Notice that it’s not a ‘Yes’ versus ‘No’ voice, that is too simplistic,  and sometimes ‘No’ is the correct answer. Its more a curious versus fearful voice. Willing to learn, willing to look deeper, willing to let go of pre-conceived notions and be challenged to grow. 

Exploration without fear. 

When was the last time you reflected on your own mindset? 

Reflection is vital part of being a birth worker – no matter which pathway you are on.

As you may know reflection can take many forms from journal writing, to art, to conversations with friends or peers. Mindset links to refection because of the need to learn from refection, bringing a growth mindset into reflection can enable this tool to become even more powerful and enable us to even deeper with our learning and understanding. 

It helps us to develop our self awareness. 

A particular favourite podcast episode of mine is that of Adi’s conversation with Paul Polman as they touch on key ingredients when wanting to make a social impact, many points are relatable to our purpose as an antenatal educators. 

Im not going to talk more on refection but for now I would  suggest this… 

Think about a development plan for your life. Think about what you want, what your goals are – let your dreams loose – Go for it!

Now plan how you might get there, what skills and knowledge might you need? 

Be aware as you write this what your thoughts are? Does this feel scary? or an exciting chapter in your life.

Now you have a life development plan, now block out time in your life  and call it ‘Mindset work’. It starts with intention. I would go as far as to say that thinking about mindset more than you did yesterday is enough. Its a good first step. You just need to have your ‘why’ (your development life plan) firmly in place, then let your curiosity drive the rest. 

Because the real trigger for mindset work is actually in perceiving a genuine need, the goals you want to achieve in life and how to get there. However, all too often we wait for things to go wrong before taking a deeper look at ourselves. Not until we’re experiencing imposter syndrome, do we really take a moment to consider this.  Let’s not wait until things get to that. 

So to acknowledge and overcome the subtle nature of mindsets, simply ask yourself: 

How can I work on my mindset today? 

 

Did you know that Antenatal Training UK Students receive mindset tips and support throughout their time training with us?  

Further reading:

Six problem-solving mindsets for very uncertain times 

How to choose your attitude in adversity 

Mindset enhances a parents mental and emotional health and wellbeing

Lets stop for a moment and consider how we might apply this to parents. Research has shown that a growth mindset can support and prevent mental health issues and of course this then passes down through the generations impacting on the infants wellbeing as well. 

Interestingly enough spiritual beliefs and values  – or what we consider important in our life – have a big bearing on our life and mental wellbeing. These often act like an internal compass, pointing us in the right direction. Research shows that when we set goals and take action aligned to what is most important to us, we experience higher levels of wellbeing, personal fulfilment and happiness.

 

 Mindfulness meditation, connection to nature, community involvement and meaningful relationships are activities that can help us to connect with our values. In the Mental Health modules we delve deep in this, looking at how values and and beliefs impact on wellbeing and how rites and rituals can actual support this process with our parents.

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