Building relationship with your friends and family

Our goal for this session is to continue strengthening your relationship with your friends, family, and community members.

img Reviewing Your Chat With Zuri Zuri taught you the importance of sharing your health concerns with health professionals. Talking to others can relieve the burdens you may feel and seeing a doctor about health problems helps you stay healthy and happy.

Identifying Unhealthy Thoughts

Everyone feels alone sometimes, and talking about problems with others or asking for help is not always easy. Sometimes it is especially difficult to talk about health problems with your doctor. Some mothers may think that they do not have the knowledge or confidence to explain their health problems or concerns about their baby. If these thoughts stop you from sharing your concerns, you may miss chances to get help that will make you or your baby feel better. Here are a couple examples of unhealthy thoughts about sharing problems that can stop you from getting the help that you need:

Unhealthy Thought Makes Us Feel/Do Which May Result In
I don't know enough to explain my health problems to people. It is useless to try to discussing my health problems with anyone. Not sharing health problems; a small illness may become a big one.
I have to be responsible for everything. Take extra burden on yourself. Increased stress and tension that is bad for you and the baby.
img Writing Prompt What keeps you from asking for help or telling people about your concerns?

Replacing Unhealthy Thoughts with Healthy Thinking

When you have thoughts that are keeping you from sharing your problems with others, begin to think about the ways that asking for help could lead to positive outcomes for you and your baby. As you focus your thoughts on the ways that others could help you by giving you good advice, helping with your work, or providing medical treatment, you may feel more motivated and comfortable asking for help from the people around you.

Healthy Thought Makes Us Feel/Do Which May Result In
The world will not fall apart if I talk about my problems. Talking about my problems with someone trusted. Feeling less stress and tension.
If I talk to someone about my problem, I can keep small problems from becoming big problems. Explaining health problems to CHW. Illness being treated in time, and the mother and baby staying healthy.
img Writing Prompt What is one question or concern that worries you that you have not shared with someone you trust (a friend, family member or medical professional)? What might be the good things that would happen if you told someone?
img Let's Practice Practice is a big part of the Healthy Moms program. We must learn how to Think Healthy, and practice is an essential part of learning.

1. Talking to Your Doctor

When you go speak with a doctor or community health worker, it can sometimes be difficult, or even embarrassing, to explain your symptoms. Sometimes it is hard to think of the right thing to say. It is also easy to forget things you meant to mention or ask. However, health professionals can provide better help if you try to explain the details about how you are feeling and what is happening with your body. This role play exercise will help you practice talking with a doctor or community health worker. You’ll need a friend or family member to do this with you.

See the script below. Ask your friend to play the role of the doctor, and you will play the role of the patient who is not feeling well. After reading this script out loud, try another role play that you make up about a real problem you are having. Practice how you plan to talk with the doctor or CHW about your real problem.

Patient: Hello, I’m feeling a little sick today and didn’t know what to do.
Doctor: Okay, could you tell me more about how you’ve been feeling?
Patient: I’ve been sneezing all the time and I’ve had a stuffy nose. I don’t think my temperature has been high though.
Doctor: It sounds like you may have a cold. Since you don’t have a fever, I don’t think you have the flu.
Patient: That’s good to hear. I was really worried it was the flu!

2. Spending Time with Your Baby

Try the following exercises when you have time and are in a comfortable space.

img Gentle Massage:
  • Give your baby a gentle massage while making soothing sounds or saying loving words.
  • Try to do this once a day.
img Talking or Singing to Baby:
  • Talk or sing to your baby every day after feeding.
  • Listen to the sounds and watch the gesture your baby makes and try to mimic them.
  • Aim to do this 3 - 4 times per day.
img Playing with your Baby:
  • Play with your baby 3 - 4 times a day during different times of the day.
  • Show him/her different multi-colored objects or things that make a sound.
  • Hold the object out so your baby can grasp it but make sure they keep it clear from their mouth.

Create this chart in your notebook and track how often you try these activities.

Did you give your baby a gentle massage? Did you sing or talk to your baby? Did you play with your baby?
Day 1 Yes / No Yes / No Yes / No
Day 2 Yes / No Yes / No Yes / No

3. Eating a Healthy Diet

img Writing Prompt Review your previous diet chart. Sharing stories over a cup of tea or a meal is one of the easiest ways to connect with others. Who can you invite to join you for a chat about motherhood and life?

Create a chart like this in your notebook and use it to monitor your diet.

Breakfast Lunch Snack Dinner
Ex. Tea, porridge, banana Chips and sausage Mandazi Ugali, beef stew, sukuma wiki
Day 1

Day 2

4. Making Time for Rest and Relaxation

img Slow Breathing:
  • Relax your body. Inhale for 3 seconds and exhale for 3 seconds.
  • Do this 2 to 3 times per day for 10 to 15 minutes each time.
img Walking:
  • Follow a gentle walking pace.
  • Do this 1 time per day for 15 to 20 minutes.
img Sleep:
  • Let your mind relax.
  • Try to sleep at least 8 hours a night and take a daily afternoon nap.

Create this chart in your notebook and track how often you try the rest and relaxation activities.

Did you practice slow breathing today? Did you go for a walk today? Did you get a full night’s sleep?
Day 1 Yes / No Yes / No Yes / No
Day 2 Yes / No Yes / No Yes / No

5. Keeping Track of Your Mood

Remember, keeping track of your thoughts and feelings is a great way to see how you change and grow over time. So at least once a day, imagine the 10-step emotion ladder from Session 1 and rate how you are feeling. On the bottom step (1) are women who feel very sad and blue. On the top step (10) are women who feel great with no sadness. Which step best shows how you are feeling?

Create the following chart in your journal. If you are feeling very happy—as happy as you have ever been—you might tick the box for a 9 or 10. If you are having a really tough day, you might tick the box for step 1 or 2. Tick whatever box is right for you. Just remember that low numbers mean more sadness, and high numbers mean more happiness.


img Writing Prompt Describe a conversation with a friend or advisor that lifted your spirits? What made this conversation so powerful?
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