If you feel like your attractiveness, your sex appeal, or your self-esteem have taken a knock since having a kid, you are far from alone. That’s something just about every mother goes through. First of all, it’s important to know that you are your worst critic and likely to be harder on yourself than you should be. However, there are practical tips you can make use of to get your sense of confidence back and to feel like more of a woman after pregnancy, not less of one.
Get back into good habits steadily
While physical activity and diet are important during pregnancy, it’s not an overstatement to say that most women tend to indulge and tend to become a lot more immobile as the months go on. You might not have the hormonal and instinctual needs to eat everything unhealthy, but those habits can still remain. Starting to exercise after a break or to diet can be difficult and even dangerous if you push yourself too hard. Get into good habits steadily and incrementally increase the positive changes you’re making in your lifestyle. That way, it’s much less likely to be a temporary health kick and more likely to be a real lifestyle change.
Put time into your routine
You might be as concerned about your beauty as you are with your health, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Women feel confident when they know that they look good. The problem is that a lot of women tend to drop things like taking care of their skin when their self-esteem is low because they think “what is the point?” However, it has been shown that simply putting in the time and making an effort alone can start to raise your pride in your appearance and help you express yourself more confidently. It’s less of a “fake it till you make it” approach and more of an “I think, therefore I am” effect.
Get your mojo back
Sexuality can play a big role in a woman’s sense of appeal and confidence. You shouldn’t let it define you, but nor should you downplay the importance it might have in your life. You might a little self-conscious about intimacy with your partner after a relationship and you might even feel like your sex drive has suddenly disappeared entirely. A mommy makeover can help you feel both that confidence as well as the drive to get intimate once more. Some of the less flattering changes to your body can be reversed or minimized, and the natural rejuvenation of your own needs can get something of a boost. You’ll start feeling sexier again and it could get rid of one less potential strain in a relationship.
The body does change quite a lot after pregnancy. It’s not just about baby weight, some women can see permanent changes to their figure. Of course, most of your fashion is going to be built around your figure so getting into old clothes might not work as well as it used to. Treat yourself, go shopping, and start building your style from the ground up once more. Just like with beauty regimens, the simple act of spending time focusing on and improving your appearance is going to help you grow much more comfortable with it. There are few things that are going to get you as much positive feedback as a new sense of style, too.
Self-confidence isn’t all about how you look, but it’s all about how you are treated. If you’re not treating yourself well, you won’t notice that others are treating you well, either. So, take a little time for mommy and give yourself the kind of love and attention you deserve. Book a day at a health spa or, if you’re looking to budget for the new baby, create your own homemade spa experience yourself. Start treating yourself how you want the world to treat you. That way, you’re a lot more likely to notice when people are genuinely being caring or showing you the positive reinforcement. It can help you flip your perspective entirely.
Meet real moms, not photoshopped celebs
Perspective is important, too. We lose it so easily. All women should be aware of the impact that the media we consume has on us. You might be detached from it all, entirely unaffected by the image bombardment, but most women aren’t. Seeing stories of how this celebrity got into a bikini half-a-day after having a baby while also earning a million bucks makes real women feel like they’re doing it wrong. Even if the images in the media are entirely constructed (and they are.) Instead, meet real moms who have real challenges like you. There are likely groups in your community that can help you connect with like-minded women and, if not, there are mom-friend apps that can do the exact same thing.
Cut yourself a break
The science is in. It has been proven that having a baby lowers your self-esteem, sometimes as up to as long as three years. One of the big components of the shift of self-perception is the sudden flood of hormones as your body gets used to no longer having a child inside it. With that in mind, you can gain a little insight into your own emotions. This isn’t really how you feel about yourself. Your body is conditioning you to think this way. Don’t be quite so hard on yourself and know that this will pass. With the other tips mentioned above, you can help it pass a little quicker. Either way, this isn’t how you are always going to feel about yourself.
Motherhood is a wonderful part of life (as stressful and difficult as it can be) and it shouldn’t diminish how you feel about yourself. Most women recover from their bouts of low self-esteem and confidence after a few months to a couple of years, but hopefully, the tips above can help you get back in the swing of things a little sooner than that.