Bonding with your newborn is so very important, but between breastfeeding, pumping, recovering from labor and real life (like doing the dishes), it can be hard to find time and energy to breathe, much less “bond”. I’m a huge proponent of structure in everyone’s life and all that, but you know, things get in the way. THINGS. I get that bonding is super-important, though, so I do these 10 Easy Ways to Bond with Your Baby Every Day.
These easy ways to bond with your baby are things you can absolutely do from the moment that little pumpkin is born. And, if you keep doing it, you can be guaranteed to have some serious in-love-ness with your mini-you. Good ju-ju for both of you.
10 Easy Ways to Bond with Your Baby Every Day
- Eye Contact. Never underestimate the power of looking your baby in the eye. When she’s awake, just make eye contact. Put down the phone, turn off the TV, do whatever so that you can just stare her in the eye and smile for a minute.
- Feed at Breast-Height. Baby, especially when she’s brand new, can only see about a foot away. So, rather than putting her in your lap to feed her, hold her high on your chest, even if you have to prop-up your arm.
- Mini-Massage. Every time you change a diaper, spend just a second rubbing a small part of baby. Little feet, tiny hands, a leg or her chest, just a itty-bitty massage will be just a moment longer you had skin contact.
- Talk. If you share a little conversation, let him hear your voice, that’s going to mean a lot. Think about it, for the first nine months of his life in your tummy, he heard your voice closest to him. Your voice means the world.
- Smile. It’s a universal signal for “happy” and it becomes a universal symbol for “I’m happy with you”. Wouldn’t you love to hear that from your mom a thousand times a day?
- Tummy-to-Tummy-Time. For about an hour a day, baby needs to be on his tummy so he can exercise those head-lifting muscles, right? So, you should do some of that time with him on your chest. It doesn’t have to be the full hour, but 10 minutes on your chest, letting him listen to your heartbeat. Perfection.
- Strap-on that Baby. Get a backpack or a sling or one of those wraps. Rather than leaving baby in the car seat and cart at the store, strap her on to your chest. Or while you’re doing dishes. Or when you’re going for a walk. Just not while you’re cooking–we don’t need burned baby toes.
- Kisses. You know, these shouldn’t just be reserved for people that can talk, walk and eat solid food. Distribute liberally.
- Cuddle. Spend 5 minutes just sitting and holding your baby. If that’s right before you put her to bed, right after you feed him or even after you put the other kids to bed, just stop. Stop for 5 minutes and cuddle.
- Multi-Task. If you just have to do things, because sometimes, that’s just what happens, find a way to work-in baby with your task. So, if you need to plunk away at the computer to finish a work-project, do it with baby in your lap or next to you on the couch. Find a way to take him out of the crib and just be with you.