Tag Archive | life balance

Increase Fertility, Naturally: From Experience Life Magazine

Kristin Ohlson, a regular contributor to Experience Life Magazine, has written an up-to-date, concise primer on preparing your body for conception. Her article Increase Fertility, Naturally gives 9 practical strategies for cultivating a healthy pregnancy. She starts out with the reminder that, according to RESOLVE, one in 10 of us will experience infertility.

Each of the 9 suggestions (with accompanying explanation) is valuable. If you take all 9 and implement them as a package, you’ll be setting a solid foundation for trying to conceive. Of course, there may be other issues to address, but don’t sneeze at this set of 9. It’s a perfect place to start to ensure you’re creating the best possible conditions. The article is also sprinkled with useful references.

My personal favorite is Number 7. Look Beyond the Numbers.

On the web version of this article, Kristin has included a 10th (a Web Extra) to help men create the best conditions for the swimmers too.

For those of you experiencing a deeper level of frustration on the fertility path, I’m offering a complimentary guide Freedom from Infertility Frustration: 6 Steps to Relief. Visit Whole Vision Coaching to have the guide sent to you.

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Coach Louise and Coach Julie

Dear blog reader,

Coach Louise began this blog with the intention that it be a place to share stories, ask questions, get support in a safe place of understanding and compassion, as well as a source for information on the topic of infertility, miscarriage, treatments etc. I am so excited to be taking over the administration of the blog and continuing on the mission of supporting you on your unique fertility journey. If you’d like to know more about me and what I offer, please click About Julie or visit Whole Vision Coaching. I’m so glad you’re here. Most importantly, I really want you to understand that you are not alone and this part of your adventure does not define who you are.

Having experienced the frustrations of unexplained infertility personally, I recognize that the experience can be isolating when the people around you don’t necessarily understand what you are going through. It is also often the first crisis couples come up against where there is really no control over the outcome. I want to connect with you and give you as much support as possible to lead a life full of joy and balance no matter the outcome of your pursuit of parenthood. I can also help to guide you and propose different alternatives that you might not have considered yet from a purely objective point of view.

Ultimately, I can offer you a space like a comfy sofa that you can fall into to feel comforted and reassured and so much more while on this unexpectedly challenging journey.

With love,
Coach Julie

Acceptance: A Game Changer

As you continue your journey towards gaining and sustaining a healthy body image, healthy self-esteem, and practicing nurturing self-care, it’s worthwhile considering the powerful practice of self-acceptance. Self-acceptance is a conscious action motivated by a desire to feel a deeper sense of peace with your self and in your life experience.

It’s not about pretending to be perfect or denying that there are things about yourself that you might like to change. It’s the opposite of rejecting aspects of yourself that you don’t like, claiming only those that you do. In fact, it’s being genuinely face-forward about who you are right now – all the splendid and not-so-splendid parts – and accepting your true self just as you are. It’s the only place from which you can make any real change.

The Tryout
Look in a full-length mirror and say to your reflection, “I am here. This is me as I am right now.” Feel your full presence there. Press your feet into the floor right there in front of the mirror.

How did that feel? Were you curious and interested? Were you resistant and unwilling? Were you able to look directly into your own eyes and confidently make those statements? Did you feel hesitant, afraid, or in some other way uncomfortable? Did you smile or frown during the exercise? Do you think you could do the exercise in the nude?

Your answers to those questions tell you where you are with accepting your self. These answers illustrate your level of self-acceptance right now. Having taken the measure of your self-acceptance, you can decide if you will consciously take more action to self-accept.

The Practice
A good old fashion and effective way to exercise your self-acceptance muscle is by using an affirmation. For example, say to yourself, “I accept myself as I am right now.” Try this affirmation out loud in front of a mirror for three weeks. Work towards looking yourself directly in the eyes while you say it. When you can do that, next add a loving smile to your face during the declaration.

Game Time
When you can feel the statement of acceptance as truth in your heart, you’ll be ready to get into the game. Now you can look at exactly what it is that you’d like to improve or change about yourself.

Adjust your affirmation to acknowledge your desire to change while continuing to support yourself with full acceptance. For example, “This is the way I am right now, and I am willing to change.” Add a factual, non-judgmental statement of exactly what it is you want to change. For example, “I speak curtly to my husband right now, and I want to change so that I speak to him lovingly. I want to create a loving connection with my husband.”

This powerful combination of accepting what is now plus acknowledging your desire to change forges a path that takes you from here to where you want to be. By supporting yourself with acceptance, you can see a clear way towards the new you. By seeing that clear way, you can take one step each day persistently and consistently to take you to your desired goal.

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Part 3 – Healthy Body Image: 6 Places to Start

In Part 2, we looked specifically at just six areas of life experience that are influenced by body image and self-esteem. We closed this examination with the hopeful idea that accepting self as is today is the place to start, even if there are things we want to change.

But how do you accept your self as you are today? Can you find a way to reopen your heart to your present self? Below I offer six suggestions. These activities are immediately fulfilling and longer lasting than the perfect body.

Self-care
Groom and dress yourself lovingly every day. Simple things like applying lotion after a shower to arms, legs, and torso in a gentle, massaging way can help you reconnect and feel good about yourself. Wear clothes that fit well, in colors and styles that you like and feel good in. Limit or completely eliminate getting on a scale. Tune into how you feel more than what you weigh.

Hobbies
Schedule some time every week, or at least every month, to engage in an activity that you find fun and that reignites your creative juices.

Friendships
Reach out to people you know and like; create opportunities to get together and share some fun time. Don’t worry about bothering them or how busy they may already be; and if they are not available, do not take it personally. Just keep reaching out to people you know and like and find someone who can join you for an activity as simple as a walk and chat, for example.

Self-appreciation
While facing yourself in the mirror, declare your appreciation for the things you do well and the qualities that you like in yourself. Start out with one day a week and work up to making it a daily practice. Find at least one positive thing to say to yourself in the mirror each time.

Healthy food choices
Take time to buy, prepare, and eat nourishing and healthful food. Even if you are cooking for just you, act as if you are feeding someone very important and deserving of a great home-cooked meal – because you are.

Feel-good movement
Turn on some fun music that makes you want to move your body. Find ways to move that feel good, for example, swimming or yoga. What physical activities did you enjoy when you were a kid? Find ways to reconnect with that side of yourself.

There are many ways to practice self-acceptance and self-nurturance that will create the foundation from which to support your desired changes. You can have the life you want. Start today by appreciating who you are now. As you do this, you will be able to move toward the life you want for yourself with positive energy and an attitude of joy.

Part 1 – Your Body Image: Healthy or Harmful?

Do you ever have thoughts like these?

I am fat.

I am scrawny.

I hate my _______. It/they is/are so ugly.

My life would be better if I looked better.

If I were better/younger looking, I would ___________.

I will never look as good as _____________.

________ would love me if I were taller/thinner/more muscular.

I look disgusting; no one could ever love me.

You are not alone. At some point, all of us have had such thoughts – including the most popular kids in high school and the best-paid bodies in Hollywood.

In this three part series, we look at what is happening with body image in our popular culture, how your body image actually impacts your life, and ways to find appreciation for your body and love yourself again.

With her pioneering study from 1996, author and psychology professor Linda Smolak documented that 80% of American women are dissatisfied with their appearance. This statistic holds true today. And poor body image is not a gender-specific affliction. According to many recent studies, men are becoming increasingly dissatisfied with their appearance too.

So, what exactly are we talking about here?

Poor body image is not just a problem of being unhappy with what we see in the mirror. It also involves a skewed perception of what we see. For example, a University of Colorado study showed that the same women who overestimate the size of their waists by 25% were still able to accurately estimate the width of a box.

Compounding the problem are the unrealistic expectations of what we should be seeing in the mirror. From the moment we can understand what we are looking at, we are fed messages about “ideal” body types, what “beautiful” is, and information about other “preferred” physical features.

So, body image becomes a liability when you:

  • Feel unhappy about what you look like.
  • Have a skewed perception of what you actually do look like.
  • Have unrealistic or harmful expectations about what you should look like.

The stronger your dissatisfaction with your appearance, the more pervasively these body image issues govern your behaviors and experiences. Eating disorders, depression, substance abuse, and other serious problems are the results of extreme cases of poor body image. Limiting beliefs, stunted relationships, and varying degrees of self-loathing are some of the more every day results of poor body image.

In Part 2, we take a closer look at the various areas of life that poor body image affects and consider the possibility of experiencing hope and joy with an improved body image.

The Journey 8 Day New Year Cleanse: New Beginnings Physically and Emotionally

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Dear Friends,

I just had the wonderful opportunity to be on the first of 8 daily calls with an organisation called The Journey who I believe do the most amazing work worldwide.  To learn more about this experience I am having, and how you can participate too (for FREE) please click on my other blog to get the details!    www.keystoclaritycoach.wordpress.com  or see on side of page.   Or you can just go straight to www.thejourney.com

I really encourage anyone getting ready to do an IVF or IUI in the next couple of months to investigate as it is a wonderful and supportive way to prepare yourself!   That is what I’m doing!

Warmly,

Coach Louise

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PS Its not too late to join!  They are recording the calls so you can catch up and join the rest!

Group Program starting on Monday!

Wow, it’s amazing but the beginning of November is almost here!  Together with the elections, beautiful fall colors (in USA), the Holiday Season and of course the all important, infertility journey you are taking.  (Myself included!)  When the majority of people surrounding us are totally unaware of the added burden that we carry and the emotional rollercoaster we might be on, LIFE goes on.  Here is an opportunity to join a small group of women, who are walking in your shoes…

 The Fertile Foundation Power Circle starts Monday, the 3rd November 2008 

Be part of an intimate group without leaving your sofa!  Our group will meet on a weekly basis, by phone (or Skype)  at 12noon EST (- 6hrs GMT) for one hour.  I will give you simple instructions to follow upon your registration.   Initially, everyone in the group will get a chance to share their story, and get to know one another. We will take the opportunity, in the on-coming weeks, to:

·     Be heard, without feeling judged.

·     Know that we are in a safe and confidential space of sharing our feelings and experiences.

·     Get to clarify our hopes and dreams of our journey however it progresses (natural, IUI, IVF, donor,adoption, child-free).

·     Set clear intentions on how to take charge of our journey – emotionally, physically and spiritually.  This covers a whole gamut of topics that we can discuss- just to name few:

·          diet,

·          exercise,

·          specialists,

·          tests,

·          dealing with miscarriage,

·          grief,

·          communication with our spouse

·          pregnant friends,

·          interfering family

·          Holiday gatherings  etc!

  This is where we can build our ‘foundation’ for fertility!

·     Be resources of information and a sounding board for one another.

·     Come to a place where you might just want be ‘cradled’ in that moment, and supported in general.

·     Get tips and tools from Louise on making the journey an easier and more joyful one.

·     To learn more about the Law of Attraction.

·     Discover how to become more than your infertility with the guidance of Marina Lombardo’s book.  (to learn more about this – listen to my latest radio show  www.blogtalkradio.com/KeystoClarity-coach )

·     Be part of a group moving forward together, instead of isolating ourselves which happens all to easily.

·     Be part of an intimate group without leaving your sofa!

·     Get coaching from Louise when you get stuck – yes, lots of stickiness on this journey!

·     Learn tips to relax and de-stress in preparation for a successful outcome.

·     Have access to a private group online forum to talk in between sessions.

·     Have unlimited email access to Louise in between sessions.

·     Make new and meaningful friendships with amazing women facing similar issues to you!

I am thrilled and so moved to be able to facilitate this program.  This group is about taking women out of isolation and into a setting where they feel safe and supported. Where women are in a positive environment that can help them to make plans about their future, and deal with positive and negative experiences as they happen.  This is about creating a safe space to share and not be analyzed!  This is about women who deserve to be nurtured and taken care of, especially when they are taking care of everybody else!

Give yourself permission to get support on this special and often difficult journey, especially when the goal is such an important one. 

If you are interested in joining us, , please contact Louise as soon as possible.   There are just a few spaces left in the November group.   If the timing isn’t right, there will be a new program starting in January – again limited space, so book in advance.   I invite you to inquire if you are curious!  My contact details are on the Contact page! or you can comment on the post.

Each one of you will be an integral part of this sacred space, for yourself, and for each and every one of the women participating. I am really looking forward to creating this special space with you.

Warmly,

Coach Louise

Louise Crooks – LifeBalanceinFertility Coach

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PS: Don’t let distance / time-zone get in your way!  One of our group members is from the Philippines