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Here’s The Ultimate Tool to Manifest the Postpartum You Desire

Here’s The Ultimate Tool to Manifest the Postpartum You Desire

Have you spent a lot of time preparing for the birth of your baby… reading books, going to antenatal classes, decorating the nursery and buying cute little baby outfits? Have you given much thought to the first forty days after birth? If you’re a first time mama, probably not. But you’re having a baby not a birth and you’ll be a mama for the rest of your life. So I’m here to help you visualise it so you can manifest it.

Visualisation is the most powerful mind exercise you can do. It’s been shown in neuroscience developments that imagining to almost the same extent as if the process was occurring in real time, creates the same neural pathways in the brain as when the process actually occurs. (The Brain That Changes Itself, Norman Doidge M.D.) 

It’s understandable that it’s hard to imagine what life your baby will look like. You can read all the books and listen to all the stories but every birth and baby are different. But giving some thought to how you’d like your life to look like after you bring your baby home will prepare you for this time of uncertainty.

In many cultures around the world, the first 30- 40 days after birth is a time of rest, nourishing food, relief from household chores and support. It reflects the concept of ‘40 days for 40 years’ and the belief that the right care, support, food and rest can have a life- long impact on a mother’s health and vitality.

First Forty Days

Using a vision board is a useful tool to visualise your first forty days after birth. It’s a visual representation of your goals, hopes and dreams for this time. It consists of images, affirmations and quotes to help you visualise the postpartum you desire.

Traditionally vision boards were a physical board with pictures cut out from magazines and hung up in your house but since Pinterest has 100 billion images to choose from and pin, it’s easier to create a digital vision board.

If you’ve never used Pinterest, prepare to get hooked. It allows you to create a digital board, search for images and quotes and then add them to your board.

Following are instructions on how to create a digital vision board for your first forty days after birth:

Step 1: Make it sacred 

Gather all the tools you’ll need including your journal, a pen and your laptop or ipad.

Grab yourself a cup of tea and a snack

Limit distractions by closing all your other tabs on your laptop or ipad and put your phone on silent.

Set the mood. Turn off the TV, turn on your favourite music, light a candle or diffuse doTERRA essential oils. A diffuser blend for focus is: 4 drops peppermint, 5 drops Wild Orange and 2 drops of frankincense.

Step 2: Visualise your first forty days using your senses

Sitting comfortably with your eyes softly closed. Take a deep breath in and a long breath out. Take a moment to visualise your fourth trimester by engaging all five senses.

Sight: See your perfectly healthy baby and your strong and powerful body. What do you see around you? Who is there with you? Are they helpful and supportive of you resting? Do you have a Sanctuary set up for you and your baby? Where is it in your house? Is there natural light? How much time do you spend at home? Do you like to go for walks with your baby? Do you have any or many visitors? 

Hearing: Is the Sanctuary you’ve created for you and your baby peaceful and quiet? Or is there a door so you can shut yourself away from the hustle and bustle of the rest of the house?

Smell: Are you diffusing essential oils in your room? Or are you using them on your body to support you physically and emotionally? Are there aromatic smells coming from the kitchen where someone you love is making you a meal? 

Touch: Are you wearing comfortable pyjamas? Are they made of silk, satin or organic cotton and do they feel nice on your skin? Is your baby latched easily onto your breast? Do you wear her in a sling or carrier around the house?

Taste: Do you eat warm and nourishing home cooked meals? Are you nourishing yourself with meals from your freezer that you made in batches before your baby arrived? Do your visitors come bearing home cooked meals? Or do they or your partner cook your favourite meals from scratch? Do you have a stash of nourishing treats you can satiate your hunger with while you’re breastfeeding?

Take a deep breath in and a long breath out. Then blink your eyes open. 

Write in your journal what you saw, heard, smelled, touched and tasted. Also write down how you want to feel during the first forty days after birth.

Step 3: Create Your Pinterest Vision Board

  1. Create a Pinterest account
  2. Select the tab with your name
  3. Click on the “+” symbol above your name
  4. Select, “Create Board”
  5. Choose a name for the board that describes how you’d like to feel during the first forty days after birth
  6. Use the description of your board to set an intention or further describe that the board is about. 
  7. To keep your board private, “check” the “Visibility” box
  8. Select, “Create”
  9. Close the pop up window, “Save Some Pins To Your New Board”.

Step 4: Gather Images for your Pinterest Vision Board

1. Find images, quotes, affirmations, recipes or blog posts that resonate with your intention for your first 40 days after birth.

2. When searching on Pinterest, choose:

  • Images that represent how you want to feel, not just things you want
  • Positive and inspirational quotes
  • Affirmations that you can use as mantras
  • Recipes for nourishing food
  • Essential oil blends to support you physically and emotionally

3. Enter a topic like, “breastfeeding mother image” into the “Search” field and the search results will appear

4. Hover over the image you’d like to add to your board, select your board name from the drop down menu and “save”

5. Repeat until you’ve completed your board

If you can’t find what you’re looking for on Pinterest, you can save images from the web or your personal images to Pinterest. On your board, select the “+” symbol above your board name. Select “Create Pin”. Drag and drop your image and add a title.

Step 5: Print Your Vision Board and put it where you can see it

Once you’ve created your Vision Board, print it out. To Print, scroll to the bottom of the Pinterest Vision Board so all the images appear and then select, File from your main menu and “Print”.

Hang it up where you’ll see if often to create a visual reminder of your hopes and dreams for the first forty days after birth. Each time you see it, you’re doing a mini visualisation and strengthening the neural pathways in your brain.

Step 6: Visualise the process of achieving your goals

Alongside visualisation take action to manifest the postpartum you desire. For example, ask your partner, family and friends to help, freeze some meals, go to a breastfeeding class and create a sanctuary in your room where you can rest with your baby. These actions will vary for each new mother depending on her own unique vision.

Tell me in the COMMENTS below.….what is your vision for your postpartum?

Are you a tired, pregnant mama? Get your free 20 minute Guided Deep Relaxation (Yoga Nidra) to take you from exhausted to energised. Fill in your details HERE and I’ll send it to your inbox for you to download.

Porridge for the First Forty Days

Porridge for the First Forty Days

According to Yoga’s sister Science, Ayurveda, you lose vast amounts of earth (eg.the baby and the placenta), water (amniotic fluid and tears) and fire (through her blood and sweat) during birth and you need to replace these elements to balance your doshas (constitution). You can do this by eating foods that are sweet, warm, oily, simple and moist.

Porridge is the perfect comfort food, easy to digest and can be eaten for breakfast, lunch or dinner in the first forty days after birth when your digestion may be sluggish.

The sweetness of the banana, cinnamon and maple syrup will help boost your oxytocin because of the comforting, nourishing feeling you get when you taste sweet foods. 

Chinese medicine also believe that it’s important for new mums to replace yin and blood which is lost in birth to assist with recovery and to produce good quality breast milk. Adding an egg yolk to your porridge is a good source of nutrients and helps to replace Yin. Add the egg once you’ve turned off the heat on the stove so it doesn’t scramble and stir well. Don’t worry you won’t taste it!

Preparation Time: 5 minutes 

Cooking Time: 10 minutes

Serves: 1

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 cup organic rolled oats 

1 tablespoon of chia seeds 

½- 1 cup of your choice of milk (depending on how creamy you like it)

1 small banana

1 teaspoon of cinnamon

1 teaspoon of ghee

1 egg yolk

1 teaspoon of maple syrup

* omit or add any ingredients to suit your taste buds

METHOD:

  1. Soak oats and chia seeds in half a cup of water overnight in the fridge.
  2. Add ½-1 cup of milk, banana and cinnamon
  3. Cook on low heat, stirring occasionally. Turn off heat when milk has almost absorbed.
  4. Add egg yolk and ghee and stir well
  5. Drizzle maple syrup 
  6. Serve a bowl or a thermos 
  7. Enjoy! 

TIME SAVING TIPS:

Cover the oats with water and put in the fridge just before you hop into bed. Cook it on the stove first thing in the morning before your baby wakes and then store in a thermos so you can eat it when you’re hungry. The porridge will stay warm (and you can pop the lid back on if you get interrupted) and it won’t go gluggy (like it would if you re- heated it).

Tell me in the COMMENTS below.….what toppings do you like to add to your porridge? 

Are you a tired, pregnant mama? Get your free 20 minute Guided Deep Relaxation (Yoga Nidra) to take you from exhausted to energised. Fill in your details HERE and I’ll send it to your inbox for you to download.

How To Check If You Have Abdominal Separation

How To Check If You Have Abdominal Separation

If you’ve had a baby you’ve probably heard of abdominal separation-  also known as diastasis recti or “mummy’s tummy”. 

It’s caused by the separation of the outermost abdominal muscles during pregnancy. As your uterus expands the layers of your abdominals muscles and the connective tissue to which they attach stretch to make room for your growing baby. Within 6 weeks after birth, your uterus contracts back to its original size but the surrounding abdominal muscles are still stretched and loose.

If you answer “YES” to any of these, you may have abdominal separation:

  • Lower back pain during or after your pregnancy
  • Pelvic instability 
  • Poor posture 
  • Your ‘innie’ belly button became an ‘outie’ 
  • You have a visibly distended ridge running down the midline of your stomach when you sit up in bed, do a sit- up or when you do a back- bend
  • A ’mummy tummy’ that no amount of diet or exercise will shift 

How do I check if I have abdominal separation?

A diastasis is measured in fingers because that’s the easiest way for you to tell exactly how far your muscles have separated. The more fingers you can fit, the worse it is.

Here’s how to check yourself:

  1. Lie on your back with your knees bent, and feet flat on the floor.
  2. Support your head with 1 hand and put your fingertips of your other hand at your navel (with your knuckles parallel to your knees).
  3. With your abdominal muscles relaxed, gently press your fingertips into your belly button.
  4. Peel your head, neck and shoulders off the floor into a “sit- up,” moving your rib cage towards your pelvis (don’t just lift your head).
  5. As your muscles tense, notice how many fingers fit between the rectus abdominis (on the left and right sides).
  6. If you have a diastasis you will be able to feel the rectus abdominis tightening up on either side of your fingers.
  7. Repeat 3 inches above and below your belly button. If you’re separation is more than 2 fingers wide, you may have abdominal separation.
  8. Now check the connective tissue (where the gap is). Turn your fingers the other direction so all 4 fingers are between the gap. With your tummy soft, press towards your spine. The deeper your fingers go, the weaker the connective tissue.

What if I have abdominal separation?

Separated muscles are weak muscles so they can’t support your back and organs. For a strong core, you need to lessen this gap. Strengthening these muscles means better sex, less or no urine leakage when laughing, sneezing or coughing and prevention of a prolapse.

These may make your abdominal separation worse:

  1. Fitness Exercises like sit-ups/ crunches and obliques sit- ups/crunches and push-ups, impact exercises and resistance training which causes intra-abdominal “force” on the connective tissue.
  2. Pilates Exercises like plank, chest lift, criss- cross, seated roll up or any exercises which involve upper body flexion or double leg extension.
  3. Upper Extremity Weight Bearing exercises such as full Plank and Push- Ups on the toes as the connective tissue is weakened by the gravitational force of the organs upon it.
  4. Yoga poses that include extension of the thoracic and lumbar spine: Upward facing dog, wheel, bow and camel to name a few.
  5. Rocking up to sitting from a lying position or sitting straight up in bed.
  6. Wearing a front loading baby carrier.

What can I do to fix it?

Before you return to the gym or running, start with Postnatal or Mama and Baby Pilates which is tailored to women with abdominal exercises. It’ll help strengthen your transverse abdominals (the deepest layer of your abdominals) rather than the superficial ones (your six pack) and give you a flatter stomach.

How long will it take to get better?

It all depends on how often you do your transverse abdominis (deep core) exercises and if you do any exercises/ activities that can make it worse.

What else can I do?

Go and see a Women’s Health Physio and get it checked. They’ll advise you what exercises to avoid or modify.

Tell me in the COMMENTS below.….did you check if you have abdominal separation? And did you find these instructions helpful?

Are you a new mama in Milton Ulladulla? Mama & Baby Pilates is on Tuesdays at 10.30am. For more info, CLICK HERE