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Pregnancy At Week 30

Pregnancy At Week 30

Now that you are in your third trimester, your baby is becoming more real to you every day. Your growing belly is a sign that your baby is developing swiftly and preparing to enter the bright and beautiful world.

Here are some of the things you can expect during week 30 of your pregnancy:

Your Baby during Pregnancy at Week 30

By now, your baby is almost fully developed! Your little one now probably weighs a hefty three pounds and is gaining weight steadily.

It is not just your baby’s body that is growing quickly now. Your baby’s brain is really beginning to develop. Before now, your baby’s brain had a smooth surface. But now that they are getting ready to leave the safety of the womb, the grooves that signal brain development is beginning to happen.

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These indentations and groves show that your baby is starting to produce more brain tissue. This brain tissue will allow your baby to really begin to develop all of the traits that they need to survive once they have left the comfort of their mother’s belly.

The baby is now regulating his own body temperature. Until now, your baby kept their temperature stable with downy hair that covered their body. But since the brain cells and new fat cells are developing, your baby does not need that extra hair anymore. Though, you may notice that there is a little bit left when your baby is born.

Although this is a change that you cannot see, your baby is now creating their own red blood cells. This is important because your baby needs these red blood cells to survive in the outside world. Until now, your baby’s spleen or other tissues were producing these cells. But at this stage in the pregnancy, your baby’s bone marrow is now taking care of this task. This is a real sign that your baby is getting ready to be born!

Even if your baby was born now, there is a great likelihood that your little one would be happy and healthy after time in a special care unit.

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Your Body during Pregnancy at Week 30

Your belly is probably feeling pretty large by now but take heart, this just means that your baby is doing well! Being unable to tie your shoes is pretty normal and you may have a bit of a pregnancy waddle.

You may or may not feel like it, but it is okay to keep having sex at this point. Unless your doctor has said otherwise it is safe to continue to have intercourse. But don’t be afraid if your sex life takes a hiatus. Sometimes it is less a case of a lack of desire and more about figuring out to have sex. If you’re not ready to quit, feel free to experiment.

Common Symptoms

Your growing belly might upset your skin. Stretch marks are common and itchy skin is not unheard of during this time.

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You may also find that your belly is having an impact on your breathing. This may feel uncomfortable but don’t worry. In most cases, your baby’s growth is causing your uterus to put pressure on your diaphragm. This should take care of itself in a few weeks when your baby begins to drop.

Tips

If you are having skin problems, you can try moisturizers or lotions to help relieve this. If nothing is working, ask your doctor about alternatives that a safe to use during pregnancy.

Things to Do in Week 30

Although you have a few more weeks, your baby could actually arrive at any time and you need to be ready. This is a great time to pack a hospital bag with everything that you need for the delivery. Keep it in a safe place where you can easily find it should your baby decide to make a surprise entrance. It’s certainly not a time to be planning a trip to Amsterdam or anywhere else!

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This is also the time to begin those childbirth classes. Ideally, you will have graduated from this course by the end of week 36. In these classes, you will learn about how to recognize labor and about the different stages of labor. You will also learn how to make yourself more comfortable and how to relieve pain.

If you do not already have a birth plan, this is the time to create one. You also need to make sure that you have everything you need to get yourself to and from a hospital or wherever you plan to give birth. This means having a carrier, a car seat and plenty of other gear to get your little one to his new home safely. But do not just buy a car seat! Make sure it is set up and ready to go.

As you prepare to meet your little one, do not worry about being nervous. At week 30, you are almost at the end of your pregnancy. Savor every moment, even the uncomfortable ones, and remember that your life is about to change for the better!

Featured photo credit: Big D2112 via flickr.com

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Published on August 8, 2018

How Guided Meditation for Kids Can Boost Learning and Social Skills

How Guided Meditation for Kids Can Boost Learning and Social Skills

Do you want the best for your kid? Of course you do!

Boosting your kid’s learning ability and social skills in less than 20 minutes a day? That’s where guided meditation for kids comes in.

You have probably heard a lot about meditation the last couple years. As there’s more and more research in the area of meditation, a lot of people finally start to see the benefits.

A subject that’s not talked about too much is that meditation can also help kids grow incredible learning and social skills.

Meditation for kids is becoming more popular every day as parents want their kids to see the benefits too.

What is guided meditation for kids?

First things first, what exactly is the guided meditation for kids that is talked about in this article?

We can define meditation with the help of Headspace:[1]

Meditation is about training in awareness and getting a healthy sense of perspective. You’re not trying to turn off your thoughts or feelings. You’re learning to observe them without judgment. And eventually, you may start to better understand them as well.

And according to GuidedMind, guided meditation is:[2]

Guided meditation is when you are guided, by a narrator, to elicit a specific change in your life. You are first guided to relax your body and mind, to help you reach a deep meditative state before going on a journey, in your mind, to reach a specific goal.

If you want to get into guided meditation, read this:

The Guided Morning Meditation for Beginners (That Will Change Your Day)

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As you may know, there are a lot of variations on meditation. This includes:

  • Mindfulness, focusing on the breath while accepting everything that’s happening (thoughts, sounds, etc.).
  • (Guided) Visualization, visualizing a particular event, environment, feeling, etc.
  • Heart Rhythm Meditation (HRM), focusing on the breath and the heart while feeling at one with everything. A focus on downward energy flow within the body.
  • Transcendental Meditation (TM), this technique is literally about transcending the negative through internal mantras.
  • Qi Gong, this is a form of meditation that is done through specific movement patterns while focusing on the breath.
  • Kundalini focuses on the upward flow of energy within the body. Focusing on that energy with your breath gives you a higher sense of consciousness.
  • Zazen, sitting with a back straight while focusing on deep breaths.

You can find out more about different forms in this article:

17 Types of Meditation (Techniques and Basics) to Practice Mindfulness

All these forms of meditation can be done individually or guided. Guided meditation for kids is the best choice because it will make it easier for them to follow and understand.

The benefits of meditation for kids

There are a lot of benefits meditation has to offer, but the most important benefit is that it relieves stress. In this time and age, this becomes more important than ever.

(Post-)millennials are dealing with a lot of stress due to the amount of work pressure, opportunities (decision making) and student loan debt (which results in wanting early financial success).[3]

Making sure children are stress resistant is of high importance for the future of their lives.

Of course, there are way more benefits to meditation. So, to convince you further; here follow more benefits to meditation.

There are precisely 76 benefits to meditation which are scientifically proved.[4] But the main benefits of meditation are:

  • Improved concentration[5]
  • Increased happiness[6]
  • Slows down the aging process[7]
  • Increased immunity[8] and cardiovascular health[9]
  • Improved mood and brain power

Here I’m going to look into some of meditation’s benefits that parents care about most:

Boost learning ability

The question is: ‘How does meditation for kids improve learning ability?’

There are, of course, multiple answers but there’s one simple answer; concentration. As you read earlier on in this article, meditation improves the ability to concentrate.

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If the ability to concentrate increases, it will lead to an increased attention span which is one of the factors that affect learning.

By implementing guided meditation into your kids’ life; he/she will become a better learner.

Another reason to increase the attention span of your child beside learning is that our average attention span per person is decreasing exponentially because of all the distractions that we have around us.

The more we let distractions in, the less easy it becomes to really focus on something. This is because it takes us 23 minutes to get into something after being distracted.[10]

Improve social skills

The way meditation for kids improves the social skills of the meditator is through the sense of presence it creates.[11] Being present in a conversation is more important than you may think.

Do you know those people who are just way up in their head which makes it hard to have an in-depth conversation with?

They probably don’t meditate.

By being present in a conversation, you can better understand the person you’re talking to. Not being carried away by your thoughts makes it easier to process the information the other is providing. Including non-verbal signs, you may never have noticed if you weren’t present.

Meditation for kids also improves charisma because of the loving nature that grows from meditating. Especially the kindness and gratitude focused forms of meditation for kids. By being more kind and grateful; your kid will increase in charisma and feeling of interconnectedness which will improve social skills.

Last but not least, implementing guided meditation for kids in the form of guided meditation by you (the parent) will likely improve the relationship between you and your child.

This creates the opportunity to educate your child on specific social skills you’ve picked up and the other way around. Also, a child is very dependent on its environment.

By increasing social skills yourself, you will improve the social skills of your child.

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How to get started with guided meditation for kids

Below follows a step-by-step process on how to implement guided meditation for kids into your kids’ life.

Step 1: Do it yourself first

Have you ever tried learning Spanish from someone who doesn’t speak Spanish? No, because it doesn’t make sense!

This is the same for meditation for kids. If you want to teach your kid how to meditate, you will first have to do it yourself.

Pick a form of meditation for kids you think would work best and get the hang of it. Follow guided meditation via YouTube or any platform you like.

Suggestions: Visualization meditation, body scan meditation or simple mindfulness.

There’s an easy guide on meditation you can do anywhere at any time:

The 5-Minute Guide to Meditation: Anywhere, Anytime

Step 2: Expose your kid to the practice

By exposing your kid to the practice without him/her knowing, its intention will raise their curiosity. This makes it easier to convince them afterward.

Meditate in the presence of them; put your earplugs in and start meditating while they are around. When they talk to you or touch you while you’re meditating, keep meditating until they walk away.

When you’re done, you can explain what you were doing and why you were doing and ask to do it together. Explain it in a way, so they understand it.

Here’s an article that will help you explain mindfulness to your kid:

Mindfulness: What it is and How to Explain it to Kids and Adults

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Tip: Make it sound like it’s very special (which it is) so that they’ll grow their curiosity and excitement even more.

Step 3: Do it together

Now that you have the interest of your child and know the essence of meditation you can finally do it together. Guide them through the meditation or put on the meditation you followed before.

Make it a fun and enjoyable experience for your child at first while keeping the essence of meditation in mind.

As you and your child progress you may want to make it more serious.

Step 4: Let your child express himself/Herself entirely

You will get a lot of insights about your feelings and thoughts through meditation. Your child will also experience these things and may want to express it.

Ask your child after the meditation what he/she experienced or felt. Let them get rid of everything that’s bothering them.

Step 5: Be consistent

As you do it more frequently; you will build a habit for you and your kid that will benefit you both. Reward them after each meditation.

Make it a fun experience instead of something they must do. Don’t push it.

Step 6: Be calm and let it be

Again, don’t push it and don’t expect anything. You want to get your child into meditation for kids so he/she can benefit from it in the long run. But you can’t decide for your kid if he/she wants it or not.

You will have to educate yourself first before you can train your child. Read books or articles about meditation for kids and try your best.

Conclusion

Here’s a summary of the key points you have learned by reading this article:

  • You now know what (guided) meditation for kids is.
  • You know why it’s so important to include (guided) meditation into your and your kids’ life.
  • You know how (guided) meditation for kids helps improve the learning ability of your kid.
  • You know how (guided) meditation for kids helps improve the social skills of your kid.
  • You have the steps you can follow to implement meditation for kids into your kids’ life.

Good luck and start meditating with your kids!

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

Reference

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