The beginning of a New Year marks a time of thinking about how the past year went and thinking about what the New Year holds. Many people will develop resolutions or goals to strive towards in the year ahead . . . lose some weight, save money, stop nail biting, be nicer to a family member, be happier. Well-intentioned people set these goals and often find by the end of the year (or even by the end of January!), that little or no progress has been made. How come? These goals are too big and too vague. So what’s the best way to see results? Make your goal specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely. Or, in other words, SMART. SMART goal setting is easy if you know how to do it.
For example, let’s say I want to be nicer to my mother. How am I going to do this? What does being nice to my mother look like? How am I going to know when I have achieved this goal? Can this goal really be reached? Is the goal a realistic one: can I really be nice to my mother? How long will it take to achieve it?
I decide that being nice to my mother will look like me giving her a compliment every time I speak with her for one month. One compliment seems reasonable. However, since this is something new I may not remember to do it, especially when I’m having a bad day. So I will place post-it notes around my home and reminders in my calendar. I will track my progress in my journal and at the end of the month see how I did. Giving my mother compliments will make her feel good and I will feel good for making her feel good. Hopefully by the end of the month this new behaviour will become natural and I won’t have to rely on the reminders anymore. And maybe I will like being nice to my mother so much that I set another goal around being nice to her.
For a new mom, a SMART goal for the next week might be to take one 15-minute break a day from being with your kids and have a cup of tea (rather, for example, setting a goal to go out for a night on the town with your girlfriends).
Be kind to yourselves,
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Welcome to our Village
The adjustment to motherhood can be very challenging. Approximately 1 in 6 women experiences significant postpartum depression or anxiety.
For 42 years Pacific Post Partum Support Society has provided early recognition and cost-effective convenient programs to reduce the severity and duration of symptoms of postpartum depression and anxiety. We believe women can overcome isolation and engineer their own recoveries by building support networks and learning self-care and coping techniques which encourage healthy life choices. The society sustains mothers of all social, economic, and cultural backgrounds.
Mothers who call or email us receive confidential, non-judgmental support and understanding from our peer-support counsellors. All counsellors have resolved their own difficult postpartum adjustments and trained extensively as telephone-support counsellors and facilitators. They regularly consult with other professionals in the field to keep pace with current therapeutic strategies.
As more than one issue contributes to a difficult adjustment, more than one element is needed to improve. We know that it takes a village to raise a child — and several different kinds of support to help families overcome this difficult and challenging time.
The villagers at Pacific Post Partum Support Society contribute in many ways: some are paid staff, some volunteer on our Board of Directors, committees, or in other capacities, and others help financially. We need all of our villagers to continue to assist mothers and their families during their personal journeys through postpartum depression and anxiety.
We are expanding our telephone support for pregnant and postpartum women and their partners to include: Cognitive Behavioural Self-help Skills and Techniques
Women now have the option of participating in an 8 week series (consisting of one call per week) of one-to-one telephone coaching to help them develop cognitive behavioural self-help skills to better manage their PND.
- The development of self-help skills is a key strategy in reducing the impact of PND for women, partners and their families.
- Telephone coaching sessions are also available for partners.
- Our coaches are experienced facilitators are trained extensively in telephone support, group facilitation, risk management and perinatal adjustment. In our modified peer-support model, all of our coaches are mothers, and many have recovered from postpartum depression.
- If you are interested please call our telephone support line at: Toll free line: 855-255-7999 or (our local # 604-255-7999).
- Self referrals are welcome.
This expanded service is made possible through grants from The Canada Post Foundation for Mental Health as well as the Vancouver Foundation and the Hamber Foundation.