Updated: Feb 8
Our body is our temple mouthed a woman nearby who had just finished her yoga practise. Meanwhile I smile and nod only half hearing what she said, continuing my exercise in the shade, where we were by the beach. Realising I mustn't have actually understood, (those moments can be awkward can't they?) she mouthed it again. This time I heard so I stopped my workout to go over and speak to this lovely lady. After a couple of minutes I was introduced to the entire group, who were all around my mothers age. We chatted for a while and I promised I would return and join in with them some day soon. 'Keep connecting' said Bernie, as she warmly smiled at me and we said goodbye.
I'd taken the 'day off' for me. A 'day off' being a mum, postnatal coach, and business owner to just 'be'. To release myself from the mental load and be free by the ocean. This is something I have struggled with, always feeling a need to be around people, keep busy and have plans. I felt like I'd be wasting time or mum guilt would creep in. So personally having this one day 'off' was a huge breakthrough and let me tell you, I am sold. A friend actually does this every 6 months, not just one day though, a full week. Yep that's right, 7 days in her own company with no kids, partner or friends. You might be in awe, or if you're like me wonder how and if you'd even want to do it, but honestly don't knock it until you've tried it.
I always remember a friend who already had children saying to me when I fell pregnant, 'nothing in life will be the same'. It's one of those things at the time you take with a grain of salt and don't think anymore of it. This was her belief, her experience and such a simple statement had the power to then shape what I went into motherhood believing. I'll be honest, my life has done nothing but change, although I am also very aware not to put my beliefs on others and not let other peoples beliefs form my own. Being true to myself, having the courage to live up to these truths and not the life others expect.
When becoming a mum for the first time or multiple times for some, we as women, are re-birthed too. We experience a kind of love we never knew even existed and it can be difficult to enter into this phase. There has been many articles around the subject of losing yourself when becoming a mum and the loss of identity. Well this is very real and we can lose our way without even realising it, grieving our old self and life. Striving to be the best mum, some days just staying afloat and feeling every pang of guilt if we dare to do something for ourselves.
I'm four years into my motherhood journey and as much as we wonder if it gets easier, every year just comes with its own set of challenges. I do think if we were more prepared, in a better head space to begin with, we wouldn't feel all of the emotions to the same heightened level. So what if we framed it differently? What if we viewed this time as an opportunity, an opportunity to define ourselves by trusting our heart and how we truly feel. By changing how we approach things because we are not our behaviours and we can ALWAYS enhance or expand our identity. The stories we tell ourselves, overthinking everything can become our own belief system, resulting in how we act.
If we take a moment to stop, think and then act, it could really help the way our upgraded identity unfolds. Here are my 3 tips to reclaim your power as a woman, business owner, wife, friend and mother:
1) MOVE = We can literally change our current state in seconds. From feeling down to having more energy by simply moving. A radical change in our body increases biochemistry, decreasing cortisol (our stress hormone) by 33%. It is much easier to make yourself feel better by moving than to use your mind to 'think' yourself to feel better.
2) FEEL = Whatever we focus our energy on that is where the energy will go. You know the saying 'where energy goes, energy flows?' If we have our mind on things we can't control this creates uncertainty, fear and isolation. We need to address these feelings, releasing thoughts by meditating or using a journal to really feel. If we focus on situations we can influence or control, not overthinking the past or future, living in the NOW can help gain new perspectives.
3) WORDS = What we tell ourselves and the words we attach to experiences then become our belief on that experience. Words matter. Our inner dialogue matters. If we only focus on the negative part of a particular situation, instead of the highlights then we will remember that experience based on the less favourable words we used to describe it. Sounds pretty simple doesn't it? Wrong. Our words carry so much weight.
Who we are, what we do, how we act then becomes our identity. Our identity shapes our choices in life and I'm glad I chose to speak with Bernie that morning down the beach.
Who do YOU want to be?
What lights YOU up?
What way do YOU want someone to describe you?
How do YOU feel in this moment?
"We don't do what we can't, we do what we believe we are." - Tony Robbins.
Whatever stage of your journey you are in, you have the power to create the life you desire. And mama, it's ok not to enjoy every day.
Much love, Rach xxx