Newborn Series: Could You Use More Happiness? Practicing Joy with Radha Agrawal of Daybreaker
In today’s special Newborn episode of the Gentle Parenting Show, Kim sits down with Radha Agrawal. Radha is an entrepreneur and co-Founder, CEO, and Chief Community Architect of Daybreaker, the global morning dance, music, and wellness movement. As a mother herself, Radha is passionate about practicing joy, finding community, and being present in motherhood.
What is a Joy Practice?
Joy practices are so critical for parents, especially new parents, to handle the transitions through everyday life. So, how do you go about practicing joy? Radha says a great way to practice joy is to start your day by moving to unlock joy. Orient your body towards joy. The practice of yoga or meditation takes you from stress to calm. Right now, Radha’s joy practice is to start each day by dancing with her daughter.
Another great practice to bring joy is to use affirmations. Some affirmations like “I am beautiful” or “I am worthy” are great phrases to use. As parents, we are sometimes so focused on pumping up and supporting our children, that we forget to pump ourselves up.
Movement is a way for joy to enter the body. But Radha advises to not go intense with these movements. Your morning joy practice should be light and easy, it doesn’t need to be any type of HIIT workout. She advises focusing on smooth, relaxed movements. These are things like stretching, yoga, dancing, or meditation. Radha says that “joy practice looks at holistic joy and not just having six-pack abs, but bringing it all together and inviting joy, smiles, movement, and belonging.”
Practicing Joy in Parenthood
When you have a new baby, you need help tuning into this new person, and what it means to be a parent. To do this, find things that bring you joy. Radha says that calm, happy movements create a calming effect on babies.
Radha’s favorite way to practice joy as a parent is through music. In her home, there’s always music playing. Music is such a pathway to wellness and joy. Music helps newborns and children build a new type of neuropathway that can help them at different ages with knowledge.
It’s easier to fit joy practices into life when it’s not part of an agenda. Radha believes that joy comes easiest when it comes naturally. Invite others, like your children, to participate in your joy practices. She says “the more joyful we are as parents, the more our children feel that.” You may be wondering how much time to dedicate to joy practices. Radha says that little doses can often be the best. All you need is a little over 10 minutes. Break a little sweat, visualize, and do breathe work.
Stay Connected with Joy
In a world where everything is so fast and connected, we’re still lacking deeper connection and communication with our children. Children and babies need us to be quiet and in the moment with them. Be a kid with them! Radha, and many parents, are often told that life moves so fast. That your kids grow up in the blink of an eye. But, the more present we are, the slower time goes. Make it a point for it not to go by fast by being deeply in joy with your kids.
Something that Radha is often asked is how to find joy as a parent when you’re run down by work, housework, and everything in life. Radha advises that whatever space you’re in
(home, work, etc.) be there. Find joy in that current state. Be in joy at home, be in joy at work. Orient yourself towards joy.
Find Community to Practice Joy
Radha is a big believer in community. There is a lot of judgment in parenting, and finding a community as a parent can help calm the judgment. Radha says “building a community is so easy, you just have to start “ Everyone has the ability to build a community.
In today’s modern world we’ve gotten so used to the solo style of raising kids. We think that everything should be done inside the home, alone. But we really need to turn to the community approach to find joy. Radha says “you can’t experience joy without belonging and community.”
As much as we work on belonging to ourselves, we can’t experience the depths of joy without being in relation to another person. Joy practice is anchored to the community. Talk about your joy practice with others. Share your joy practice with others so they can experience joy for themselves. Joy is a pyramid. The biggest base of the joy pyramid is community belonging. Individual joy is the top and smallest piece of the pyramid. Radha says to reflect on the best days of your life, were they spent with others?
Practicing Joy with Daybreaker
Radha’s company, Daybreaker, was created to bring more joy. To help bring others joy with Daybreaker, new members take an in-depth quiz. Those results are then used to create a customized joy practice.
The questions asked before creating the joy practice have to do with support, emotional well-being, and community support. The quiz analyzes how you live your life. Then, with a Daybreaker subscription, there’s a prescription for joy. The prescription breaks them up into doses based on neurochemical needs. You’ll be able to know exactly how many, and which kind of Daybreaker classes to participate in monthly.
The biggest benefit of the Daybreaker plan is the community it brings. Connecting with like-minded individuals enhances your joy in the Daybreaker program.