Regaining Body Confidence After Having Your Baby

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Today’s guest post is by Jordan is the beauty and brains behind Beautifully Alive! She loves eating healthy and trying new recipes.The self-proclaimed Zumba Queen has a passion for beauty products and loves reading new books. She’s always down for a DIY project! Hope you enjoy this read, leave your comments below!

 

Pregnancy is of the most unique and special experiences a woman can have, but it’s also one of the hardest. On top of the exhaustion, the hormone shifts, the fears and doubts, and all the messy diapers after the baby arrives, there’s also the fact that you no longer recognize the person in the mirror.

If you’re struggling to feel confident after having a baby, you’re not alone. According to a British poll, it takes a woman an average of 18 months to feel happy with her body post pregnancy.

1. Stay Off Social Media

Women feel intense pressure to compete with other moms to quickly lose weight after the baby is born. It’s possible that this competitive pressure is increasing thanks to social media. Every new mom wants to take beautiful Instagram pics and show off the joys of motherhood, but spending too much time browsing social media can be depressing. When you do browse, try not to compare yourself to others, and realize that every “perfect” new mom you see is likely struggling just as much as you.

2. Practice Self-love and Watch Your Thoughts

Your thoughts are powerful, and the attitude you have while doing any activity is going to affect both the outcome of that activity and your enjoyment of it. In general, far too many people view exercise as a torturous activity that one must force themselves to do, and when it comes to new moms, that sense of difficulty tends to combine with a negative body image, making for an unpleasant experience.

One way to shift your attitude about your body is to remove outside distractions. Rather than working out with the television on, put on some soothing music and do a gentle yoga flow. Make exercise more of a meditative experience. Pay attention to how your body feels. Positive mantras like “I’m proud of what my body has accomplished” or “My beautiful body created the most beautiful child” can help remind you of just how far you’ve come, which will only inspire you to go further.

3. Be Realistic

Our thoughts and attitudes shape our world, but at the same time, there are limitations to physical reality. The first few months after having a baby, your hormones are all out of whack, and your body is recovering from a major event. If you had survived a car accident, you wouldn’t feel guilty for not being able to jog for miles during the recovery process, would you? Stop setting unrealistic goals for yourself, and instead, choose to enjoy this time with your baby.

4. Find the Healthy Balance with Fitness

It takes time to recover from pregnancy. Once your doctor gives you the green light to begin exercising again, you might be anxious to get started. You also might be dreading the fact that you no longer have the excuse to be lazy.

If you’re the competitive type who likes to push hard, try to be kind to yourself during this time. Remember what your body has been through and know that developing your health and fitness are ongoing processes. There’s no need to rush. What matters is the enjoyment of moving your body.

If you’re the type who struggles to get motivated, focus on exercising for a few minutes at a time. New moms are busy and exhausted, and most of us can’t take 45 minutes to an hour away from our kids to go work out at the gym. It’s too easy to use that as an excuse to do nothing at all. Instead, try a few minutes of yoga, dance, stretching or weights at any given time you have free. All that movement adds up to calories burned and increased strength.

5. Take the Time to Feel Beautiful

If we try hard enough, there are always a list of things we can prioritize ahead of self-care. Your house is messy. There’s laundry to be done. With so many chores along with a new baby to tend to, the idea of pausing to curl your hair or put on lipstick might seem ridiculous, but these small acts of self-love can make a difference in how you feel.

6. Stop Being So Hard on Yourself

If you move through the first few years of life as a new mom with a negative attitude toward your body, there’s no way you’ll ever stick to exercise long enough to lose the post-baby weight. However, if you shift your attitude about exercise and begin to view it as an act of self-love versus focusing on the end goal of weight loss, you will begin to enjoy moving and strengthening your body.

Above all else, remember that life isn’t all or nothing. You don’t have to be perfect. You aren’t expected to quickly recover from childbirth, lose all your pregnancy weight and maintain a flawless home during the first few months of caring for your infant. You’re only expected to do your best.

Featured Photo by Florian Klauer on Unsplash