Are you wanting to breastfeed but are telling yourself what is probably the number one excuse we ALL use, (that I really shouldn’t have to tell you because you know it already) which is, “I don’t have time” to breastfeed.
When it comes to breastfeeding, “I don’t have time,” can mean three things.
It can mean that:
1) There so many doubts and hangups that you have about breastfeeding that you FEEL like you don’t have the time to figure out how to breastfeed, why to breastfeed, when to breastfeed, how often to breastfeed and everything else that breastfeeding entails. And don’t worry, I totally get it that that’s a lot of information.
2) You are a busy person and literally don’t know when you’ll be able to squeeze in the time to breastfeed.
3) You’re just using the phrase as an excuse.
So Now That You Know What’s Holding You Back In Your Breastfeeding, What Are You Gonna Do About It?
The good news is that when you use the “I don’t have time” excuse for any of the reasons mentioned above, you can actually test these the reasons/excuses by asking yourself a simple question that author of The Work, Byron Katie asks and that is “Is it true?” If you say yes, then you ask yourself her second question, which is, “Can you be absolutely know that it’s true?” Or you can take my shortcut and just ask yourself.. “Is that really true?”
So for example, if you can relate to the first excuse and say that you don’t have time to learn everything that you have to in order to familiarize yourself with breastfeeding, if you ask yourself the question, “Is it really true that you don’t have time?” all of a sudden, you can discover that it’s really not true.
You may find that you:
- Watch too much Netflix
- Spend too much time with your friends
- Waste too much time on social media
- Can easily swap reading a book, a magazine, a newspaper or your Flipboard app newsfeed with reading about breastfeeding or taking a course on it
In sum, if you’re really honest with yourself, you discover that you can do anything in your life more efficiently in order to get the time to learn more about breastfeeding.
Because you know that when you are interested in something, you find the time to do it.
If you say…
You’re too busy.
I say to that excuse of yours “Uhhhh hummm. … Is it really true?”
You say, “Well, ummm.”
I think you have your answer… just by the fact that you hesitated.
But there’s something more important that I wanna reveal to you. Let me hold your hand and please listen to me very carefully as I say this to you: “We all wear the ‘I am too busy” badge like a Medal of Honor. (I’ve done it too… heck, I still do it).
And we do it so because we feel/think we’re important, so that other people think we’re important, so that other people feel sorry for us, or so that someone comes and rescues us. ”
Ironically, the person whom we must need rescuing from is ourselves. As I shared in our last post, our mentality can either work for us or against us.
In our pursuit to feel productive enough, important enough, love enough, or simply enough we over-commit. Problem is, we overcommit on the “wrong” things… on work, on our “obligations”… and we leave what’s really important… like love, presence, involvement for another day.
Let me remind you of what I’ve covered on this blog… many times:
“People don’t want our thingies… they want our ‘self’ies” – Haydee Montemayor
So I have good news for you! If there was EVER a good excuse for stopping everything that you consider so “important” …(especially in your career that probably devours you and your time alive) it’s breastfeeding and truly taking care of your baby’s needs.
When I worked in corporate America.. I was so responsible that I only asked for time off 3 times. Twice when I needed to go out of town… and when I had my baby.
So, I get it why you could be apprehensive to “set aside your career to focus on your baby. But.. .doesn’t your baby deserve your attention, too?
If you’re just using your the phrase “I don’t have time.” as an excuse. Ask yourself. “Is that really true?”
And in that case, you have to dig a bit deeper. Because, right off the bat you know that it’s just a hesitation that you’ve put in place to not breastfeed.
So ask yourself, what is it exactly that’s holding you back?
It could be:
- Fear of failure— as in fear of trying to breastfeed and not being able to.
- Fear of sacrifice — like you don’t want to …. change your lifestyle in order to breastfeed
- Fear of commitment— that’s tightly associated with the previous two fears.
And of course there are other reasons that can be holding you back.
- But what if you SUCCEEDED in your effort to breastfeed?
- What if you gave your baby all the benefits associated with breastfeeding?
- What If you gave yourself the breastfeeding benefits as well?
- Would it be worth it? Could it be worth it? You can try to succeed, you know.
The only way you can be 100% sure that you’re NOT going to succeed is if you give up before you even try.
I know it’s super cliché that I’m saying this but it’s true. And it’s urgent. With breastfeeding, you get to jump in with both feet from the second the baby is born. You can’t wait a week to start breastfeeding. Or a month. Or a year.
Either you’re in it 100%… or your likelihood of succeeding at breastfeeding starts to diminish.
I know it sounds like I’m making this up. I wish I was. But I’m not. If you delay breastfeeding because of your C-section, you feel nauseous, you feel sleepy, you’re too tired.. you’re to busy… then… other factors can get in the way of your success.
Should you take care of yourself? Of course! I’m all for that.
But I’m also all for the fact that you should take care of the baby, as well.
Even If You Are Very Disciplined In Your Life (Or You’re Still Convinced That You Really DON’T Have Time To Breastfeed), There’s Always Room For Improving Your Time Management
Here are 6 things that you can do to find more time than you thought you had:
- Delegate things in your life that others can do (even if they don’t do it as “perfectly” as you do).
- Eliminate things that don’t move you forward in your goals or allow you to be the kind of person or parent you want to be.
- Reduce the amount of distractions whether they be activities or mental blocks that make you think you don’t have time for the important things.
- Swap the less important things in your life with the more important things.
- Reassess the time you have and the way you can possibly maximize it.
Use Your Time To Breastfeed As Productive Time
One of my favorite ways of realizing that I do have time to breastfeed is by the 6th option I mention above “reassess the time you have and the way you can possibly maximize it”… which allows me to reassess the time that I do have.
During the first few days, weeks, or maybe even months, you will be quite involved in the breastfeeding process.
Then, it will become second nature.
So, my biggest recommendation is for you to do something that you like during this time.
One of my favorite times to learn about breastfeeding was when I was ACTUALLY breastfeeding…which also happens to be the time when I most like to write about breastfeeding. Why?
Because I was doing two things at once.
But let me remind you of one important fact… although I’m highly in favor of education, learning, researching, reading, Googling and clarifying doubts… the BEST way to learn how to breastfeed is to actually breastfeed.
(I know that many productivity experts don’t necessarily believe that multitasking is a good thing… but in my opinion, doing something while you’re breastfeeding adds an extra layer of joy).
Speaking of things to read, people always complain that babies don’t come with “owners manuals” but you know what? Babies DO come with tummies, the ability to communicate by crying, and the sucking reflex (which helps them latch on and breastfeed)….so even if you were to give birth to your baby in an isolated place in which you couldn’t access books or wi-fi, you could make breastfeeding work. Many people have done that. Just saying.
You, Too, Can Literally Choose To Do Something
Think about what activity you can do while breastfeeding that will make you feel more productive.
- Scrapbooking (yes it’s possible with project Life app)
- Or whatever floats your boat
The activity would need to be quiet and something that you can do while sitting down and typically with one hand.
You Can Choose To Do Nothing
Or you can simply chill. Nobody said that every minute of your life has to be filled. Really. Nobody.
I know it’s a big adjustment to go from being a workoholic to just chilling… BUT try it, it does the body good.
Need Proof Before You Actually Put In Work To Being More Chill?
People who take moments to reflect, meditate, journal, nap, close their eyes to breathe and even exercise make that time back because these are all either relaxing activities that re-energize you or in the case of exercise, an activity that gives you more energy than it takes away.
Of course, I’m not talking about vegging in front of a couch or on a nursing chair… but relaxing or with intention.
When you stop to observe your life in a calm perspective, you are able to analyze what is working and what’s not in order to make more timely changes to what’s not working. This ends up saving you more time than if you race ahead and arrive to whatever destination you envisioned, only to realize that it was the wrong destination when you get there.
Doesn’t Feeding Your Baby Formula Take Less Time?
And just in case you’re wondering whether maybe feeding babies formula takes less time… it doesn’t necessarily.
As you know, when the baby needs to eat, getting started is easier because you simply “pop out the boob” and feed them.
But when you formula feed your baby… someone, usually you has:
- formula to buy
- formula to prepare
- bottles to wash and disinfect (unless you are pumping and freezing milk)
- hot water or water bottle to boil
- hot water or baby water to carry
- extra weight in your diaper bag (unless you want to carry frozen milk)
- a hungry baby growing more and more anxious by the second
If you like the idea of someone else feeding your baby from time to time instead of you having to pop out the boobie all the time… I suggest that you pump and freeze milk… that way, when you need a break, or to step out of the house, or to return to work, someone other than you can feed the baby.
This allows you to also have the advantage of feeding your baby and developing attachment… when you are available. Breastfeeding and pumping is the best of both worlds.
The time that you invest pumping will come back to you with “interest.” For example, if you take the time to pump milk in about 15 minutes, you’ll be able to step out of the house for a few hours. At least about 3 hours… especially as the baby gets older and isn’t on the boob 24/7.
So breastfeeding, in combination with pumping, isn’t as restrictive as you may think.
Something To Keep In Mind About Breastfeeding
One aspect of time that people DON’T consider when thinking about the time that it takes to breastfeed is that NOT breastfeeding can end up costing you more time in addition to the time that it takes you to prepare the bottles.
Well, think about it. One of the best perks about actually breastfeeding are the health benefits.
And no matter how expensive, how organic, or how gentle the formula you purchase is, one area in which it DEFINITELY falls short is in its nutritional quality. No formula has ever been able to mimic the nutritional value of maternal breastmilk. It’s not called liquid gold for nothing.
So, while you think it might not be a big deal that formula doesn’t have the nutritional value that breastmilk has, it actually does impact you.
Because formula-fed babies are:
- More likely to get sick
- And when they do, you’ll have to take time off if you work
- Even if you don’t work outside the home, you’ll have to invest time in taking them to the doctor
- And after that, you’ll have to invest time in caring for them, cooking for them, cleaning up after them
- And even if you don’t like feeding babies in the middle of the night… if they get sick… you’ll probably be up during portions of the night making sure they’re okay.
In a nutshell, digestion is essential to the quality of life we have. We are what we absorb (not necessarily what we eat)…and the more good vitamins and nutrients you can pack into a feeding, whether it be breastmilk or formula, the more stable your baby’s digestion and overall health will be.
And, since breastfed babies tend to have higher IQs than non-breastfed babies… you’ll save time in teaching them or disciplining them as well.
Enjoy The Time You Spend Breastfeeding
It’s important to make breastfeeding a priority due to it’s time-sensitive nature, its health benefits, it’s emotional benefits… and just because.
YEs, you heard it right.
Breastfeeding is not just a means to an end… but it’s the end.
Meaning, breastfeeding is not just good for what it gives you in the future, but for what it gives you in the present.
Let me explain.
One of THE MOST precious times in your life will be when you get to hold your baby in your arms.
I get teary just thinking about it.
And the beauty of it is that you can actually hold your baby close, just like you did that first day, for one, two or three years.
For several times a day.
And you can feed them what your body produces.
Can we take a moment to take that in for just a second?
Your. body. produces. the. food.
Not just any food, but the best food.
So, essentially it’s like feeding your baby gourmet food. And doing so for free.
I think that you could say, “Yes, pleeease.” Even if it’s you who has to do the “cooking.”
“Breastfeeding Is A Time Investment That Will Pay You Back in Time, In Health, In Union, In Memories And In Love” -Haydee Montemayor
Breastfeeding is task that I’ve told you will probably take up more time than you anticipate… but it’s worth it.
The time we spend on our kids is an investment.
We will get out what we put in.
Loving them now and bonding with them now will pay off.
And hopefully you understand with this email that breastfeeding will definitely take time, but it will be time well spent.
So What About You?
What was your biggest takeaway from this post. Please share your comment below.
If You Need A Bit More Help Realizing That You have More Time Than You Claim You Do
In case you’re interested in learning more about what to do if you think that “No, you really don’t have time to breastfeed your baby,” here are Byron Katie’s 4 steps on The Work, that can make you snap out of it. 🙂 😉
- Is it true? (Yes or no. If no, move to 3.)
- Can you absolutely know that it’s true? (Yes or no.)
- How do you react, what happens, when you believe that thought?
- Who would you be without the thought?