A No BS Guide to Making Your Healthy Dreams a Reality
I get it. The word blissful around anything involving motherhood sounds a little ridiculous.
As the numbers for postpartum depression and anxiety rise to epidemic proportions, the idea of feeling happiness and joy seem like a fantasy world. I’ve even been told that I should never use the word “bliss” in my work with postpartum women because it only brings women into a more “depressive state”. This idea is not only misleading, it’s downright depressive in itself.
There is no doubt that motherhood has its challenges. Its very nature confronts our realities and begs us to shift and change in ways we never expected. Our very definitions of unconditional love, what it means to be a mother, and everything in between changes.
Postpartum is often a place of unknown. Where you know life is different, but you haven’t yet put new definitions to these words and feelings because you are still figuring out what they mean. This is the exact place where women feel uneasy, lack confidence, and feel carried away with the feelings not knowing can bring.
And postpartum, life in this place of unknowing, lasts years.
However, just as you have the ability to create life, you have the ability to create bliss. And although there are times when it feels impossible, the reality is, you can create the life you want.
And this the place where life can get really amazing.
Newborns are born with infinite possibilities in front of them. With your love and support, they are shaped into the perfect little beings that they are.
And you know what else is beautiful? Childbirth is also the birth of a mother. No matter how many times a woman has been through it, each and every time it happens, she is born again a new woman. Literally, every cell of her body has become imprinted with that of her child.
You too, have infinite possibilities. And given the right tools and support (just like your newborn), you can make bliss a part of your story.
No matter where you are in your postpartum journey, whether you are two months or two years, this no BS guide is specific in supporting you in making your health goals a reality, even as a mother.
Your children are your reason.
There is an old idea that in order to fully love your children, in order to be a good mother, you must sacrifice yourself to raising them. That to be a loving mother, you must give your whole self over to your children without once thinking about your own needs and desires.
With this, children watch you give away the very things that make you who you are. They witness your sacrifice and your deterioration. The daughters of our generations learn that this is a normal part of love and they carry on the burden of martyring to their future family.
This generational lie damages families. It teaches children the wrong message about what love is and what parenting is. It wreaks marriages and leaves little behind in its destruction of the woman as a whole. You are not meant to sacrifice your life to the betterment of your children.
Instead, you are meant to live your best life so that your children can also live their best life.
When you feel good and are healthy and experience more moments of bliss than you do of despair, it will positively impact your children. You show up more fully present, more energetic, and with more to give them.
Quite simply, if you want to give your children the best of you, you need to be the best version of yourself. And that means making you a priority.
Being a blissful mama doesn’t just happen.
Being a healthy woman doesn’t just happen either. It takes the right tools and knowledge, planning, determination, and perseverance amidst the challenges that will always come up.
What I’m about to show you is what I used to create my own blissful life with four children.
On my own journey through depression, anxiety, postpartum bi-polar, and a debilitating autoimmune disease (ulcerative colitis), I felt incredibly lost and alone. I didn’t understand why God even gave me children.
As a biology student in love with science, I started with the only thing I knew best: research.
I researched postpartum depression and anxiety, and everything related to maternal mental health. I studied cultures around the world, anthropology, midwifery, and mothering. As the pieces came together, I knew why I was experiencing such grim symptoms after childbirth.
What I didn’t know was how to put all the pieces together to work in my life and get me well again.
The Tools and Knowledge You Need.
Thankfully, you don’t have to dedicate the next several years of your life to research as I had done. I have already given you access to all the tools and knowledge on how to create a healthy life after birth through Mother Love: A Revolutionary Guide to a Blissful Postpartum.
This is where I share with you my last 10 years of research. It’s nearly all the facts on how your body functions in postpartum and how best to support it physically, emotionally, nutritionally, and hormonally.
Mother Love is your step-by-step guide to the groundwork of your needs, which are:
- Good Sleep
- Hormone Balance
Each of these areas may look different to each mother, but they are the foundation to health, well-being and happiness (as explained in the guide).
From this foundation, your personal needs can be addressed.
IF you haven’t done so already, take a minute to download this free guide and set it aside as it’ll be used at you create your plan to a blissful life after (and with) children.
The Blissful Mama Plan
In order to create a plan on becoming the best version of yourself, you need to know where you want to be. What does it mean to be a healthy and blissful mama? What vision do you hold for yourself? What does life look like for you and your family?
Spend some time journaling and really painting a picture of what life would look like for you. Look at people in your life that you look up to. What do they do in their life? What are their priorities? What does their days look like?
For many women, dreaming is something that hasn’t been done in a long time.
For this, it’s important that you go easy on yourself. Give yourself ample time to really get into the details and to explore the possibilities. Spend as much time here as it takes until you feel very clear about what you want your life to look like.
And more importantly, spend at much time as it takes until you are downright giddy over the vision you hold for your self and your family.
This is something that you will want to return to over and over again. It’ll refuel you, ignite a spark after the flames blow out, and keep you going even when things get tough.
An Accurate View:
Creating your vision of yourself as a healthy blissful mama is what we call Point B. It’s the place you want to be. And in order to get to Point B, you need to figure out where you are (Point A).
Without holding back, take assessment of your health and your feelings on a day-to-day level. What medical concerns do you have? What are some feelings you have on a regular basis that you want to change (or keep)?
Address your nutrition, sleep, hormone balance, physical health (strength, flexibility), relationships, and community. Where do you stand in each of these categories? Rate these areas on a scale of 1 through 10.
Be honest with yourself and release the guilt. Everyone starts somewhere and you doing the amazing work of creating a blissful and healthy life for yourself.
This is also a great time to honor the path you’ve been given to this point. It has served you in offering you specific lessons to help guide you to the next level.
If you are reading this, it’s no coincidence.
Now is time to release what no longer serves you and move forward, children in tow.
Now that you have a clear idea about where you are and where you want to be, create some goals to support you by focusing on one thing at a time. It’s really easy to want to incorporate many changes at the same time in an effort to realize your vision faster.
However, the more change you implement right away, the harder it’ll become to keep those changes, and the more likely you’ll slip (insert mom guilt here). Focus on what’s really important to you moving forward and implement one change at a time.
Let’s dive deeper into a few strategies and get you some goal ideas.
I highly recommend choosing one of the two methods listed below in creating goals for yourself. Pick which one suits your personality or situation best and make a move forward.
- Easiest First – Choose a goal that feels like the easiest one to accomplish. Its results can be small but enough that you feel the benefit of it. Opting for a small goal to stick with will bring you bite size pieces of confidence. It’ll help you feel good about yourself and your ability to continue moving ahead with your plan.
- Biggest Impact First – When you rated each area of your life in the previous section above, one of your life areas were rated lower than the rest. This is the where you need the most support and change. It’s also the area that will bring you the most noticeable difference in how you feel. If you need big results fast, and feel confident in making a bigger life change, this is where you want to begin.
From here, pick a goal that feels manageable. If you are needing to add more nourishment through the day, a small goal would be to add a cup of herbal tea blend at breakfast. A bigger impact goal would be to make a large batch of bone broth every week and drink it as part of your lunch.
No matter what you choose, this should feel doable to you.
It might mean you have to make some big decisions. Or have a difficult conversation. Or make some adjustments to your already busy schedule. Whatever it is that you feel you have to do to make that goal a reality should happen.
After you write your one goal, list what you need to do to make it a success. And set a date to it. Track your success. Tell others about your goal and hold yourself accountable for it. (This is where having a great community comes into action).
Plan to stick with this goal for at least two months in order to make it a habit. Reassess it every week. For example, if the bone broth feels amazing but you no longer feel you need it everyday, reduce your intake and carry on.
Imagine implementing a healthy habit and reaching a goal every two months. What would that look like for your health and well-being at the end of a year? What about the end of five years? This is how big changes happen. They start with small changes.
Moving Through Barriers:
There will be days when things feel too hard to carry out. Or challenges that arise that make your goals feel impossible.
When I finally started making progress on my health after my second, I found out I was pregnant with my third. It felt devastating to me to be “set back” in such a way. Moving forward took some time but I began by starting small. Eventually, I could take bigger strides and by six months postpartum, I had my last ulcerative colitis flare of my life. It was a feat I never thought possible in the moment of reading that pregnancy test.
The point is: life happens. And you always make it through even when you think you won’t.
When a barrier or challenge emerges, which they always will, especially in the beginning as you are making changes, keep going. Adjust your course and sometimes even your goal, but never give up.
Keep a hold of the vision you created for yourself. Read it every day. Use it as your happy place whenever you have a moment to daydream. It’ll serve you as a constant reminder to what is possible for you.
Take note: One of the missing pieces to successfully reaching your goals…
…No matter if it’s your health and well-being, or your profession, or something else, is community.
Community creates friendships and bonds that remind you that you are not alone in your journey. They support you in your goals and your vision, and they hold you accountable to them when things get challenging.
Not all groups are created equal.
It’s hard to find a group of like-minded women who are on a similar path through similar means. Even more, it’s harder to find a group that lifts you up rather than brings you down.
If you are looking for a community of like-minded women and mothers who are actively working to heal their body deeply in the years after childbirth, my Blissful Mama Group Program may be a fit for you.
If you like this blog post, I will be going in depth in a live 3-day workshop on exactly how to create a plan for a blissful life after childbirth. An entire workbook will be included along with recordings, easy actionable steps, and a big community of support for you. You can join here: www.MarandaBower.com/GroupProgram
Apply Now To Work with Maranda
If you are ready to get back to feeling your best again, and fully heal from the transition into motherhood using nutrition, apply below.