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  • Writer's pictureAngela Laverick

Focus on Connection, Rather than Perfection

Happy, healthy, nurtured relationships start with connection.

Firm connections lead to solid foundations.

When we feel a connection with another person, we feel able to relax in their presence, feeling a safe and secure attachment. In this relaxed state, feeling secure and loved, our body and minds are able to function to their optimum. We grow better and healthier, we feel happier and more resilient, and we learn and develop better, too.

How can we connect with our babies and help get them off to a great start?

When it comes to bonding and attachment, there is so much that we can do, and most activities involve one or more of the following elements:

Touch - Massage is a great example and any loving, nurturing touch that makes your baby feel good. Positive touch helps to release the chemical oxytocin in the brain, also known as the love hormone, which enhances the bonding process.

Eye contact - Gazing at your baby, soaking in every detail helps you to get to know them. Mutual eye contact helps to create a feeling of connection by acknowledging each others presence. Prolonged eye contact has been thought to release oxytocin, too. Babies look for clues in facial expressions and learn about communication.

Voice - Your baby already knows your voice and your partner's voice at birth. Hearing familiar voices helps your baby feel safe and secure. Singing and talking to your baby about anything at all often calms them and help them learn about language.

Smell - Babies recognise the scent of their mothers from the womb. They are primed to use their sense of smell at birth to seek out their mothers' milk, and pheromones produced subtly by the skin attract the bonding process. Avoiding perfumes and added scents in products in the early weeks can support this.

When we aim to support our babies with reliable and predictable responses, and show unconditional love through our attention and interactions, the connection develops and feels mutual.

It is impossible and unrealistic to expect that this can happen 100% of the time, but the good news is that it doesn't need to!

Good enough really is good enough.

And the fact that you worry about being good enough, means that you already are.

Photograph by @AngelaFenwickPhoto

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