Reflecting on the Newborn Stage. Whew… 😅

The sleep deprivation that comes along with new babies changes your brain. It changes your life early on. You go into survival mode for a while. Add on breastfeeding, cluster nursing, and small ppl who can’t differentiate their cries, you can easily unravel.

Nothing really prepares you for the obstacle course that is navigating mommyhood on 2 hours of sleep. All the wonderful plans that you made before the baby arrived can EASILY go out the window. Some of us try to say this, but there’s no way to understand until you go thru it yourself.

Whew. Them cluster feedings were something else. I just needed to revisit that. I am amazed that I made it thru 2 yrs of breastfeeding for both kids. As I think back on that, I do not wanna do that again. While your in it, you just handle it. When you have enough rest to reflect, you can appreciate all that you’ve accomplished.

My doll baby as a newborn

I recognize that many of us have kids. Every. Single. Day! I get it. But truly, what we accomplish is still astounding. No matter if we work, stay home, have one kid, have multiples, have a spouse, have in-laws, have parents to take care of, have friends, have no support…it’s a challenge. I don’t care how effortless some moms make it look, there’s repeated obstacles. I know how much work it takes to make motherhood look effortless.

My lil man around 2 years old

The other day, I walked thru some snow. Some places the sidewalk wasn’t cleared, but other ppl had walked that way though. You could see the tracks. I just walked on the same steps. It helped the journey. Mommyhood is similar…at times. Some things you can learn from other moms. Some things you’ll learn along the way. But if you’ve built a network of other moms, there’s someone that has walked the path. And many will help navigate the process. 🙏🏾❤️🙌

My heart beats

Tina Turner’s “Happiness Becomes You”

I just finished the Tina Turner book. Highly recommend. 5 Stars. I borrowed it to read, but will totally be purchasing this book. This has the type of wisdom you wanna revisit yearly. Buy or borrow this. I definitely suggest getting your own copy so you can highlight things.

She said for the first 25 years of her life, racial discrimination was legal. Imagine what you know of Tina Turner and all that she’s accomplished, and imagine all the hurdles she’s had to jump over.

It makes me so proud, even tangentially, being a BW knowing what we’ve accomplished. We’ve had to deal with racism and sexism and issues within our own communities. Yet we still rise.

The artificial pedestals propping some up and keeping others down are falling. And it’s bc of trailblazers. I am stoked to live in a time where our options and opportunities are mostly controlled by us and our thoughts and actions.

Tina is a Buddhist, but the wisdom she gives transcends. And it comes as I’m growing deeper in my yoga 🧘🏾‍♀️ practice. So this really resonated with me. She has overcome so much and with so much grace. Her story is a great guideline.

Limiting Beliefs and Where They Came From

I want to explore the concept of limiting beliefs. Some of, ok, many of our beliefs come from our parents, teachers, and religious institutions very early. And these early beliefs are strong and foundational bc they come from such strong influences with a higher position of power over us. We could either be put into a small box of expectations or we could have had an open field with space to grow and explore. Before we even begin to figure if we have limiting thoughts, we gotta figure out if we were raised in a box or a field.

I think early on, some structure and standards create guidelines. But when things are too strict, it doesn’t give a person the tools or confidence to grow into an individual. Like when you’re guided into a certain profession, the family business, to dress like “this” bc this is how a good woman dresses, or to act like this bc this is what a good man does. These are boxes.

Shame and praise are used to keep you in these boxes. Early in our lives shame and praise comes from parents, teachers, and religious leaders and do shape behaviors. As we get older we don’t even need outside ppl to shame or praise us, it’s rote memorization at that point.

As a mom, man, the shaming tactics come quick and easy and sometimes wrapped in singsong voices. Ppl being “concerned” while seemingly questioning your momming techniques. Will you breastfeed? Give formula? Oh please don’t give formula! You co-sleep? You’ve already started working out!? You aren’t gonna cover up as you nurse? You are going back to work so soon? You haven’t showered? You’re having wine? There’s literally no limits of questioning a new mom. I’m fairly fortunate bc I raised my kids hundreds of miles from my family, so I was able to do my thing with without too much input. But the opinions laced with shame are always lurking.

You have to really be self assured, be rooted in your beliefs and actions, and have the ability to listen yet decline the advice. This is where relationships sometimes get tested. Ppl, especially older, think that advice should be taken and it’s disrespectful otherwise. Here is where finding your voice and footing is key.

Now to break free of limited beliefs, we have to first understand how we got to that point. Why do we think we can’t wear certain things? Why do we think a good mom is an overworked mom? Why can’t older women wear (insert some fashion taboo)? Why is self care so hard? If I don’t wanna make my bed, why do I feel so guilty? Our childhoods do shape us. And breaking free of those limits means breaking from the need for praise and the weight of shaming tactics.

Just color your box!!

This topic is heavy and requires a lot of introspection. But this is Step Zero that sets the scene for new beliefs and affirmations. I have no answers here. This is just a jumpstart for YOU to do the work. Namaste 🙏🏾

Let’s Continue Crushing This Year!!

We made it to February. Woohoo 🙌!!! And it is the beginning of the month. This is your chance to look back at what you accomplished last month, where you fell short, and what you’d like to smash this month. I will tell you, honest self reflection is a challenge. You have to sit with yourself quietly and determine where you might have slacked off, where some of your weak point are, or maybe where you need some assistance.

Self reflection ain’t easy to some. It reminds us that we aren’t perfect. BUT…the important part to remember here. Your weaknesses are opportunities to get stronger. If you reflect, and reflect often, on your weak points, you can only grow.

I will use myself as an example. I created a goal to write on Tuesdays. I didn’t create a template or set subject matter. The goal was just to sit down and write. Writing DOES NOT come easy to me, despite being ever present on social media. Sitting down and focusing requires discipline. Well, since I know this about myself, I have taken the first step in reflection. I was also offered some coaching and book suggestions on how I can improve. Because I KNOW that this is not my strong suit, I welcomed the critique and I will be applying the suggestions. This is how I will grow.

This cycle can be applied to any subject matter where you’d like to improve. I actually like writing down my goals in a physical book. Yes, I know we can do things on our phones, but this has brought a new dimension to my to-do list. I am specific about my daily and weekly goals. Ex. I will do yoga, push-ups (3 sets of 10) and pull-ups (3 sets of 9) on Tues and Thurs. It’s written. So I pretty much have to do it. And don’t give yourself an “out” or start rationalizing why you can’t do something.

  • Write your daily/weekly/monthly goals down
  • Be specific
  • Evaluate on a consistent basis
  • Reflect on your weakness
  • Recognize these are opportunities for growth
  • Accept coaching or find sources to help improve
  • Create goals monthly that includes improvement from the month before

Pushing Into February!!

I had a friend text me just to let me know how hard push-ups were. And like a good friend, I decided her press her to keep pushing, and let her know I support her in her push-up endeavors. Doing push-ups in good form is a challenge. When done right, you are activating your upper body, whole core, even your glutes.

When mastering a task that is hard for you, break it down into manageable chunks. Do not think you’ll master this feat over night. Give yourself 4-6 weeks to see improvement and measure against YOURSELF ONLY!! No comparative fitness!!

For this challenge we will be aiming for push-ups 3 days a week. Each push-up day will have 3 sets of 10 push-ups, changing up the type of push-up each day. My push-up days this month will be Tues (reg), Thur (wide), Sun (tricep). If those days don’t work for you, create your own schedule. Just keep it on 3 separate days during the week. And in addition to the rest of your fitness program.

Any good fitness program works THE WHOLE BODY. I make sure that I am working my upper and lower body; that I’m working the front and back of my body; that I’m working on strength, functionality, and cardio; and I meditate and read (listen to) books for mental growth and health. Here’s a look at my fitness routine as a skeleton. I didn’t write down that I do at least 1 mile a day bc that would get redundant as it is daily and unchanging.