Do you recognize this? Sometimes motherhood is more about surviving rather than living fully.

Do you recognize this? Sometimes (working) motherhood is more about surviving instead of living fully…

When you were pregnant you probably had ideas about motherhood, what it would be like and how you would implement it. You have arranged a nice crèche or childminder and you may be taking some extra leave. And you’ve decided never let your children have breakfast in front of the TV… Certain things you would do exactly as your parents did. Other things you would do very differently because you have your own ideas about it.

But in real live it turns out to be so different from what you had previously thought. Something with theory and practice.

When you have just given birth, it is of course fan-tas-tic to finally be able to hold your little one in your arms. But it is also, very often, looking for a new rhythm with the three of you. And there are sometimes factors that can make that first period extra difficult. Maybe giving birth was tough and the physical recovery also takes its time. Or did you want to give your baby breastfeed but that doesn’t go the way you hoped. Does your little one cry a lot and you have no idea why. And even if everything goes very well with your child, it is a period of searching for a new balance as a family. And with each subsequent child, it is also a search for a new rhythm with each other.

If you have found a bit of routine as a new mother, you often start working again fairly quickly, and you have to switch again. Perhaps you are one of those mothers who are really looking forward to going back to work. So that you can have something for yourself again and maybe you are dreading having to go back to work and leave your little one with someone else. But however you stand, the inevitable moment when you have to go back to work will come anyway. And just to reassure you, before you know it you’ll be back in the rhythm and you as a family are used to this new situation.

But then there are so many things that you “MUST” do…that as a mother you quickly slide down…..

– you take care of your child(ren), – you have to work, – the household has to be done, – you still have a social life and want to maintain it, – you have to exercise to stay fit

The result is that you often get out of bed tired and that the days almost seem to pass by. You might even ask yourself, ‘Is this it? Being a mother and how I had envisioned it?”.

You are surviving instead of living to the fullest!

But know that there is another way! Motherhood is the perfect entrance for your personal development and growth. If you are willing to really explore what is important to you and what matters to you in life, now is the perfect opportunity

And if you dare to seize this opportunity, you will go from survival to living life to the fullest!

In this first article I challenge you to do some self-examination. This will help you in order to change things. The following articles will help you to make sure the changes are permanent.

Are you ready?!… Let’s get started:

Before you start, make sure you take some time for yourself. Make sure you are in a place where you cannot be disturbed, put your mobile on silent and put on some nice music. Make sure you have a nice cup of tea or coffee and a pen and paper so you can write.

I would like to ask you to do a writing exercise based on ‘Flow’ writing. How does that work… You are supposed to write about a certain topic for about 10 minutes continuously. I’ll give you the topic you can write about. If you have no idea what to write, just write that. The intention is to keep writing so that you really write from your feelings and your intuition. Do not get too much in your head. It often provides wonderful insights into your way of thinking and helps you to make decisions.

If this is new to you, know that the often you do this the easier it will be. In the beginning it can take a little time. And know that there is no right or wrong but that it is really your process.

The sentence you can write about is the following:

The grade I give to my current life is a…. Because….(write!)

ps. It’s not necessarily about the number, but what the number stands for.

If you like you can share the insights with me via info@coachannelief.com. I am curious whether you are satisfied with your current life situation. Or you are mainly surviving instead of living. If you have any questions about the exercise or about the results of the exercise, feel free to email me or send a DM via instagram @coachannelief. I would like to think along with you.

Would you like to receive more tips? Download my e-book for free with 6 concrete steps to a life in balance!

https://coachannel12033.activehosted.com/f/6 For more information you can take a look at my website: https://coachannelief.nl/ Or follow me on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/coachannelief/ You’re also more than welcome in my free community: https://www.facebook.com/groups/Moedersinbalans

Until the next article!

3 simple tips to strengthen the connection with yourself

PART 2: 3 simple tips to strengthen the connection with yourself By Evi Dekker-Weger (New Mama’s)

In my last blog I discussed what the ‘connection with yourself’ means and how you can (re) find it. As promised, in this new blog I share how you can strengthen the connection with yourself in 3 simple ways and make more frequent contact with your ‘inner voice’.

You have probably heard or felt your inner voice – a soft, powerful direction indicator within yourself – before. Maybe you often follow her advice, maybe you ignore it because it seems too exciting, too illogical or too risky – but chances are you know exactly what I’m talking about.

My story When I first became aware of this powerful feeling I didn’t know what to do with it. Her advice felt right, but on the other hand, it didn’t suit me at all. It didn’t fit into my life, I would have to adjust everything and every step I came up with would take away all stability and certainty – I (who loved certainty and preferably had a plan for every situation) was of course not going to do that !

In this way I continued to follow what felt logical, clear and safe to me – until I encountered myself hard. I was in a relationship that felt safe, but that I didn’t love enough from the beginning. I was studying to prove something, without being really passionate about the subject. I did what I thought I had to do because everyone else did it and got so used to it that I had no idea what I really wanted.

Slowly the feeling in myself became bigger and stronger. I felt trapped, increasingly unhappy and couldn’t ignore it no matter how hard I tried.

I had no choice but to be brave and follow my gut. That’s how I left my boyfriend and with that the group of friends I had been part of for 5 years. Later I went on a trip, emigrated to the Netherlands and eventually also stopped my studies. I left everything behind, had no idea what the future was going to look like and I had no plan A or B for the first time.

However, as soon as I had let go of everything, there was room for the new, for what my ‘inner voice’ had been talking about all along. The reward for this difficult, brave leap came in the form of my dream man, my family, new friendships, new opportunities and the best part: more confidence in myself and my feelings.

Of course, I don’t always manage to be completely guided by my feelings. I still find it exciting and often illogical, but I am increasingly able to be aware of what is being asked of me and to trust that it will work out, even if there is no plan.

Three techniques In the meantime I have also discovered 3 simple ways that help me to restore and strengthen the connection with myself, when I get stuck, get frustrated and notice that I find it difficult to listen to my inner voice.

I would like to share these 3 techniques with you, which you can apply anytime and anywhere:

1. BREATH When you feel restless and experience inner tension, this is one of the easiest techniques to apply right away: Stand still or sit for a while, close your eyes and breathe in and out 3 times deeply. Focus only on your breathing and your heart rate. Perhaps soothing words arise, you see colors before you or feelings arise that you can listen to.

This is one of the most powerful exercises to immediately experience the connection with yourself again.

2. FOLLOW THE JOY Sometimes we feel like everything is going wrong. We are late for an appointment, coffee spills on our newly put on shirts, the dishwasher suddenly breaks down, our genius idea is not understood and the work meeting turns out differently than we had hoped. Instead of following the tendency (which we often have) to immediately fix everything and come up with a plan B as quickly as possible – the solution sometimes lies in slowing down and letting go. Stop running and stick to your schedule and do something that makes you happy. It doesn’t have to be useful and it doesn’t have to be profitable. Ask yourself: What do I want to do now? What would make me happiest now? Trust your gut and let’s go!

This way you not only reconnect with yourself, but you also open your heart and mind to creativity and solutions that are less obvious, but which you may be much more enthusiastic about.

3. CHILD’S POSE When we had recently had a stressful day and both my youngest son and I were tired and overstimulated, he got angry before I put him to bed. Crying and furious, he went into child’s pose and there was no way I could change him. I got frustrated, but when I saw him lying there like that I thought: ‘Hm, that seems pretty nice to me too!’ I lay down next to him in the same position and within a few minutes we were both calm again and I was able to put him to bed effortlessly and relaxed. If you don’t remember the next time and have lost the connection with yourself, try this pose for a few minutes and feel how you slowly strengthen the connection with yourself

I hope these tips can help you to feel the connection with yourself again more often and to strengthen your confidence in this.

If you have any questions, you can always send me an email at: hello@nieuwe-mamas.nl, I like to think along with you if you get stuck in something.

And if you want to deepen the connection with yourself through valuable insights and clarifying exercises, sign up here for the FREE masterclass: CONNECTION – The connection with yourself, which you can do at your own pace, where and when you need it (online ) can follow.

In the next (and last) blog of this series I will tell you more about the challenges you can encounter if you start living more and more from your feelings and how you can overcome them.

Love and until the next blog,

Evi – New Mamas