This is an overview of the mind-body practice I used twice to get pregnant against the odds. Read how I integrate these practices throughout a typical day here!
Cleansing your home of toxins, and eating a clean, organic whole foods diet are both critically important to reclaiming your fertility and getting pregnant. There are many stories of women who became pregnant simply by following these first two life changing practices. However, the To Make A Mommy Fertility Plan isn’t just about getting healthy and pregnant. It’s also about getting HAPPY … and pregnant. If you are like me, then after struggling with “infertility” for years you are stressed out and maybe a bit depressed.
Don’t worry. I’ve got a plant for you. It doesn’t have to be that way!!
The emotional frustration of infertility
The truth is, that delays in conceiving can cause intense stress. In fact, some studies have suggested the negative emotional impact of infertility is similar to a cancer diagnosis. The basic fact is that infertility causes stress, and stress increases infertility.
But, please, stop freaking out. I know it feels like you’re caught in a downward spiral of stress. But that’s not the way it has to be. I’ve been there. I’ve escaped. And I didn’t “just relax.”
Don’t “just relax” – practice serious mind-body work for self-care
Does any of this sound familiar?
- People just keep telling you to “relax” or maybe to “take a vacation” and it will just happen.
- Your helpful grandmother keeps saying, “Honey, it’s not that big a deal, you can always adopt.”
- Your in-laws keep pressuring you to do one more IVF treatment.
- Your husband doesn’t know what to do when you cry every time you get your period.
If you are like I was, you are in desperate need of some serious self-care and your spirit needs a boost. Don’t worry- there are many ways (some are evidence based!) to nurture your soul, calm your body, reduce your stress, and get happier and healthier while trying to conceive.
Are you emotionally ready to conceive?
Further, if your spirit, your soul, your true-self isn’t ready to become pregnant (for any number of reasons), then your body isn’t going to become pregnant. These are issues to work through NOW, so you can clear your emotional and spiritual blocks and finally welcome a healthy pregnancy.
- Maybe you have some serious issues from your past that you haven’t really dealt with.
- Maybe you are secretly terrified of being a mother.
- Maybe you are just secretly terrified of being pregnant (this was my issue).
- Maybe you secretly aren’t sure your relationship is strong enough for the long haul, or you aren’t sure your partner will be a good parent.
- Or, maybe, you are just so damn tired and exhausted and stressed from trying to get pregnant that you can’t see straight!
The Mind-Body Fertility Work that Helped Me Get Pregnant
Ladies, I went from an emotional wreck, sobbing over every period and having anxiety attacks at the Reproductive Endocrinologists (RE), to being happy, stable, and confident, simply by practicing mind-body work.
Okay, actually, it wasn’t that simple. It took up a lot of my time each day. But it was 100% worth it, because I got pregnant despite my infertility – twice! Read my story of my first successful pregnancy here, and my second here!
It is important that you take the time to care for your spirit as well as your body. There are many ways to do this, but I recommend working out your fertility related emotional issues through special fertility psychotherapy work, practicing daily fertility meditation, finding a really great acupuncturist, and practicing daily visualizations and body work that support fertility.
This blog post only includes the mind-body practices that I myself used to successfully get pregnant. This doesn’t mean that there aren’t other practices out there that can help you nourish your soul. For example, I didn’t do any of those cool adult coloring book things, but I bet they would help. I am only recommending what I actually did and what I actually believe got me pregnant. There are plenty of other things I did in the mind-body realm that I don’t believe helped. I won’t mention them here.
*This post contains affiliate links which at no cost to you provide me with some small change to help keep this blog running! If you decide to buy something I recommend, please consider clicking through one of my links to help support this blog and my family! Thank you!
A word of clarification-
I do not recommend these mind-body practices because I think you need to “just relax.” In fact, I think that “relaxation” is overrated. “Stress” and “relaxation” are oversimplified words for a complex human condition.
ALL of your emotions are ENERGY and ALL of your ENERGY is your fertility. Don’t do these things to relax; do these things to nourish your whole self- body and soul. When you nourish your whole self you become healthy and happy; fertility follows naturally.
Ten Mind-Body Practices for Fertility that Helped Me Get Pregnant
- Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) Acupuncture. You absolutely need to get yourself an amazing TCM acupuncturist. This is science. TCM is an evidence based practice to increase successful conception. A good acupuncturist treats your whole self- your body and your soul. Find a practitioner who 1) tells you your diagnosis, 2) gives you diet and lifestyle advice, and 3) gives you different Chinese herbs for each part of your cycle. Click here for easy steps on identifying a great acupuncturist for fertility!
- Acknowledge your emotional stuff. If you have some underpinning fear (like those mentioned above) about pregnancy or being a mom, your mind and body might be working together to prevent you from getting pregnant. Similarly, if you have trauma you haven’t fully processed, now is the time to do so. Just like you don’t want to be reliving a sexual assault trauma when you are giving birth, you don’t want to be dealing with childhood abuse trauma when you have your own children. The time to heal is NOW- before you conceive. Here’s the great news- healing can come from simply acknowledging your issues and loving yourself anyway. You don’t actually have to do 10 years of therapy to completely eradicate it from your system. I had to deal with some serious fears of pregnancy. The methods I used were hypnotherapy, dream journaling, and the Fertile Heart Program, which I highly recommend. Read my full review of the Fertile Heart Program Here!
- Fertility-Focused Meditation + Full Body Relaxation. I used Circle + Bloom’s Natural Cycle program the month I became pregnant. It was an incredible tool to both visualize what was happening with my ovaries, eggs, and the little embryo each day, and to unwind and fully relax my body. It was only 15-20 minutes each day. I also used Fertile Heart’s guided relaxation, and a fertility yoga nidra from from Kat Anderson’s Yoga & Meditation for Fertility DVD (which doesn’t seem to be available any more on Amazon). The idea is that you want to completely relax every muscle in your body for at least 15 minutes each day. Any kind of progressive body relaxation will work, but why wouldn’t you use one tailored specifically for fertility? Read my full post here on the power of meditation & visualization for fertility.
- Visualization. Every morning and every evening I would do an “imagery” or visualization from the Fertile Heart Program. This was about 2 minutes when I woke up and two minutes when I went to sleep. I would also try to incorporate my own visualizations into my everyday life. For example, every time I showered, I would place my hands on my belly and imagine it swelling round and full with a healthy baby growing inside it. I know this seems silly, but the month I got pregnant I was also obsessively watching The Miracle of Life on youtube. In fact, my husband and I watched it about ten minutes before we conceived our first baby! We also listened to one of Fertile Heart imageries immediately before our successful baby dance. You can read my full review of the Fertile Heart Program here. You can buy the Fertile Heart Imagery CDs here.
- Prayer. Prayer is an incredibly powerful mind-body tool for healing and fertility. I believe strongly that prayer is most effective when we ask for exactly what we want and need! Click here for my overview on praying for fertility and here for all my blog posts on prayer and fertility. I am Catholic so I have found great solace in praying to saints that are known to be champions of all things fertility. You can also visit my Pinterest Board on Fertility Prayers for ideas!
- Yoga. While I don’t think yoga is necessary for fertility, it was already a daily practice of mine. I am not a big exerciser – I mostly walk and do gentle yoga. I practiced a few key fertility-enhancing yoga positions each day for months. However, the month I conceived I also religiously did the practices in the Restoring Fertility DVD. While I recommend yoga as a fertility mind-body practice I do so with one reservation: don’t do yoga just to relax. Do yoga to energize your eggs, your ovaries, and your womb! This is why I love the Restoring Fertility DVD- it incorporates self-acupressure to bring energy and blood flow to your reproductive organs at just the right time in your monthly cycle. Here is a great guest post that a yoga teacher did for me on fertility yoga!
- Dream Journaling. I was inspired to do this by Julia Indichova from Fertile Heart, and I found it to be an incredibly introspective practice. Each night as I went to sleep I would tell myself that I was going to remember my dreams- and then I would! First thing in the morning I would wake up and write down my dreams. I had incredible dreams- of being pregnant, of positive pregnancy tests, of loved ones in heaven visiting, of breastfeeding future children. It was a amazing and so healing. Read my full post on Dream Journaling here.
- Gratitude. Starting a gratitude practice was a game changer for my emotional well-being. An evidence based practice is to think of, or write down three new things each day that you are thankful for. Read my full post on starting a gratitude practice for fertility here.
- Affirmations & Mantras. I love using affirmations and mantras, and I found that it worked best for me when I tailored them to the exact part of my cycle I was in. Here is a blog post with all of my fertility affirmations, and check-out my YouTube channel where I have videos you can listen to with affirmations for each part of the cycle: menstrual, follicular, ovulatory, and luteal.
- Daily fertility massage. This five-minute a day practice connected me to my womb, increased blood flow to my reproductive areas, and gave me a chance to be mindful of your cycle and procreative efforts.