The Shift of the Pre-Mom Paradigm

changes

Changes: Photo by Superior Hiking / CC BY 2.0

Sometimes mothers try to hold on to pre-mom ways without realizing it. Letting go of the expectations of the pre-mom body, mind or spirit can be a weight lifted off her shoulders. Motherhood profoundly changes a woman. It changes her in beautiful, amazing ways.

Holding on to previous expectations can really cause distress. For example, women are bombarded by images of moms “getting their body back” after baby. Therefore, they feel guilty carrying the extra pounds or stretch marks or a new shape because “if she can do it, why can’t I”?

For example: You are trying to fit in a structured workout program like your pre-mom-self did, and finding it difficult. You keep putting it off because you are tired, busy, etc. Instead of this cycle and mentally beating yourself up, try fitting in little bouts of activity when you can instead of the structure. Do ten squats while your child is playing or when you wake up in the morning. Ten is better than zero! Add a couple bridges in while you are cleaning up the playroom. It is a simple way to shift your paradigm.

The following activities can be done without any equipment at all:

Bridges

Squats

Bird dog

Bent Knee Push Up

Dead Bug

ALWAYS check with a health care or fitness professional before beginning any new physical activity.

 

Motherhood changes your mind and spirit as well. I encourage you to be gentle and forgiving with yourself as you figure out the new rhythm as a mother. Things are going to be different, and that does not equal bad, just different.

In what ways do you find yourself trying to fit into your old pre-mom ways? How can you change your thinking to positively adapt to your new world?

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Anxiety has a home in the future

house

House: Photo by mschellhase / CC BY 2.0

Worry is a part of motherhood. It is normal and natural for a mother to worry about her children and the future. Some mothers struggle with distressing anxiety.

Anxiety lives in the future. It exists in thoughts like: what if my child gets really sick OR injured OR something worse.

Sadness is a part of motherhood and simply being human. It is normal and natural for a mother to feel sad at certain times. Some mothers struggle with debilitating depression.

Depression lives in the past. It exists in thoughts like: I am a failure OR inadequate OR things are hopeless.

The present is a place where a mother can exist and rest her mind. Taking mindful moments, as written about in a previous blog entry can give a mother a necessary mental break.

The intention of this post is to raise awareness about the power of the present moment. It is about gently guiding the self, back to the present moment, taking in the sights, sounds and smells. Even if it is only a fleeting moment or you are able to be present for longer, it is a break from all the worries and regrets you carry around daily.

I encourage you to think about where your worry or sadness lives and allow yourself to “live in the moment” a couple times per day.

  • Take a minute (or five) to sit in silence and do nothing (yeah right… “good luck” says every mother ever)
  • Focus deliberately on what you are doing in this very moment. Gently bring your mind back to the present as it begins to wander.
  • Eat slowly and savor flavors
  • Take in your children’s joy, wonder and innocence as they play
  • Focus on your breath or count your breaths

 

Note: Depression and anxiety can be severe and debilitating for some individuals and can require treatment. I encourage you to seek treatment if it is necessary.

Depression

Anxiety

Suicide Prevention