Are you struggling to lose the weight of pregnancy and feel like you’ve tried everything? I want to help you think about your journey in a different way. Make sure to check out the bonus download at the end of the article that will help with this new thinking.
The missing ingredient to your postpartum weight loss struggles is not a secret exercise, it’s not a diet hack or food to avoid, it’s not calories or a magic pill or a pink drink or anything of the sort.
Does this sound like you? You have so much anxiety about what you see in the mirror, or the number on the scale, that it’s all you can think about. You have tried this postpartum workout program and that meal plan, but for some reason you just can’t stick to it. No matter what you do, you just can’t seem to lose the extra weight of pregnancy permanently. You wonder if it’s hormones from breastfeeding, or if you are just stuck with this new body after having a baby. You beat yourself up constantly and are envious of other women you see who you think look better than you.
Self-Sabotage and Poor Body Image are Holding You Back
While you might be able to temporarily force your post-baby body into submission by punishing yourself with exercise or depriving yourself of food you love, it will not last long. Long-term adherence requires consistency and joy, two things that you will not be able to sustain if you’re miserable all the time, no matter the aesthetic results.
Your body and your mind need to be in harmony. If you are telling yourself one thing, like “I’m fat” and “I don’t deserve time to myself” or “I look horrible in my clothes”, you can’t expect your body to then provide you the opposite results. Thoughts influence your choices in a subtle way, from what you eat to how much you workout to what you wear. If you’re thinking negatively about yourself, you will manifest those thoughts. You will become exactly what you think about.
Self-Care is the Missing Ingredient
When you create a plan that comes from an intention to take care of yourself, it suddenly feels completely different. You stop focusing so much on scale numbers and jean sizes and just begin to take care of yourself. You workout because you know the endorphins will help give you energy to take care of your baby. You eat nutritious food because it makes you feel good and doesn’t zap your energy levels. You become highly in tune with your body and listen to what it is asking of you, whether that is a walk outside in the sunshine, a killer workout, or a piece of dark chocolate. You not only let the negative thoughts from before go, but you replace them with loving, positive, supportive affirmations such as “I am healthy and strong” and “I am beautiful just because I am me”. These thoughts and self-care behaviors begin to manifest and before you know it, you have the best version of your body without even thinking about it. It just happens, as a nice bonus from taking care of yourself.
Your Baby Needs You to Take Care of Yourself
What emerges when you have a positive body image, a peaceful mind, and a fitness and nutrition plan that makes you feel strong and energetic is the best version of you. The best version of you is going to take the best care of your baby. If you’re not taking the time to fill your own tank back up, eventually it’s going to be on empty, and you will have nothing left to give. Too many mothers write off self-care as being selfish, when it is in fact one of the greatest gifts you can give to your children. Not only are they getting the best from you, but you are also modeling a happy, peaceful life for them where they are capable of meeting all of their own needs.
Make a Self-Care Plan
Sit down and take the time to write out a self-care plan for yourself that includes exercise, nutrition, balance, acts of self-care, support from relationships, sleep, and positive body exercises. I promise that the results will be the same if not better than the self-punishment and deprivation would be, only it will last forever and feel a hell of a lot better.
To help you with this, I’ve created a worksheet that will guide you through all of these areas and provide examples of ways you can improve your own self-care in each category. When you are finished, you will have a plan that you can refer back to daily and check in to make sure you’re taken care of. This is especially helpful to have when you are feeling overwhelmed with new mommy life.