Pregnancy changes many things in a woman’s life. Not only were you blessed with a baby, but your body took on many changes.
Between the weight gain of pregnancy, the stretch marks and loose skin after pregnancy, it’s easy to see how women can lose confidence in themselves.
A lack of self-confidence not only affects the way you perceive yourself, it can also affect…
- How others perceive you
- How others treat you
- Your overall thinking
- Your mental health
In a long-term study of mothers in the Netherlands between 1996-2008, psychologists found a significant connection between low confidence and motherhood.
Over 84,000 women completed questionnaires multiple times during pregnancy, after birth and up to 36 months after they gave birth.
From the lengthy results, psychologists found a cringe-worthy pattern: confidence declines during pregnancy; increases six months postpartum; then confidence declined further and kept declining.
One top of steady declines in confidence after 6 months, women still experienced low confidence three years after giving birth.
In other words… If you’re experiencing low confidence or low self-esteem you are in good company with mothers all over the world!
Self-confidence is something that defines your decisions, fears and dreams. If you’re lacking in self-esteem as a woman or mother, it’s time to transform your self-confidence!
Here’s 15 ways to gain self-confidence back after having a baby!
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1. Take Care of Yourself
Before you had children, it wasn’t a problem to jump in the shower, take a relaxing bath, style your hair or apply makeup.
But let’s face it…
After you have a baby your own self-care takes a nose-dive. Now that you’re a mother, the needs of your children always come before your own.
Taking care of yourself physically and mentally is just as important as your children’s needs.
Someone recently touched based with me and asked how my self-care was going? I felt embarrassed by this question.
I was waiting for my husband to get home from work just so I could get two minutes alone in the shower. I hadn’t taken a shower for two days.
I had no makeup, a messy bun and wearing yoga pants and the same t-shirt I wore to bed the night before.
Basically, the everyday mom look. My self-care suffers from time to time because I’m so focused on other things, like my kids.
When your self-care suffers, your self-confidence suffers!
Think about it…. Do you feel good about yourself when you haven’t showered and generally don’t take care of your own needs? I’m thinking you answered “no” to that!
You need to start thinking about your self-care that’s equally important to your children. Improved self-care every day will increase your self-confidence.
Here’s a quick list of self-care ideas you can achieve daily:
- Wash your hair with shampoo and conditioner (not just dry shampoo)
- Give yourself a facial
- Apply your makeup (See what I use here)
- Get dressed
- Brush your teeth
You get the idea!
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2. Make A List
Do you find it hard to think of positive things about yourself? Why not sit down and make a pros and cons list?
A pros and cons list is a list of your positive and negative attributes. Just remember, there should be an equal number of positives and negatives.
If you have all negative attributes about yourself on the list, that won’t do you any good.
The point of a pros and cons list is to outline positive things about yourself. If you suffer from low self-confidence, making a list will remind you of all the things you are amazing at!
To boost your self-confidence you need to focus on the positives about yourself.
But what about your negative attributes you’re also listing? Well think of ways to turn those negative attributes into positive ones.
Pro: I’m a very caring person
Con: I don’t keep in touch with others well.
How could you make this con into a pro? Instead of isolating yourself, reach out and call, text or meet with friends you haven’t talked to in a while.
3. Stop The Negative Voices
You know what I’m talking about. That inner nagging voice in the back of your mind that’s constantly putting you down.
This negative inner monologue going through your mind is killing your self-confidence!
Little by little those negative thoughts are creeping in every day and keeping you from living your full potential. Out of all 15 self-confidence boosters on this list, this one has to be the hardest!
When you feel your mind rambling on and on with negative thinking, take a deep breath and force yourself to stop.
Turn off the negative thinking by distracting yourself.
I find the best way to calm negative thinking is by listening to upbeat music.
You can even have your kids join in a dance party to burn off extra energy and reduce negative thinking.
4. Don’t Compare Yourself To Others
Have you ever seen a mom that seems perfect? You know the type… All her kids sandwiches are cut into shapes of hearts and stars. She’s constantly baking cookies.
Taking her kids to dance recitals. She’s the mom that never yells and she go her pre-baby body back right after delivery…
You see a “perfect” mom like that and you start to feel insecure about your own mothering skills and the way you look?
That’s because you’re making comparisons with other women.
Don’t compare yourself to other women. All women are different and no one is perfect!
Comparing yourself to others only makes your self-confidence diminish.
5. Keep Dreaming Even After Failure
With a lack of self-confidence, you get a ‘giving up’ attitude. Individuals with confidence have the ability to fail at a task and still keep pursuing.
If there’s a task or dream you failed, ignore your failure and pursue it again.
For mom’s everywhere, we suffer from not pursing an exercise routine to get the body of our dreams after having a baby. We procrastinate. We make excuses.
Then when we finally go to the gym and exercise, we’re beyond sore because we pushed ourselves too hard.
Now, we’ve deemed physical exercise as something you can’t complete. Therefore, it’s deemed as a failure.
In a situation like this, ease up on yourself. Instead of thinking you can’t get the body of your dreams, heal up and exercise frequently to avoid muscle soreness or a failure.
Always try again for something you previously failed at!
6. Start Small
Along with pursing a dream after failure, it’s important to reduce your risk of failure. How exactly can you reduce your risk of failure?
You can set smaller goals.
Maybe the reason you see yourself as failing at a task is because your goals are too big.
While it’s great to dream big, big dreams are not accomplished overnight.
Instead of looking at the overall goal you want to accomplish, set small goals.
For example, you want to lose 20 pounds in three months to improve your confidence. Well, that’s a big goal.
Sure, you are capable of doing that. But if you don’t lose 20 pounds in three months, you’re left disappointed.
Instead, set a smaller goal of losing 5 pounds first that way you lower your risk of a large goal failure.
Yes, after having a baby exercising is the obvious way to lose weight and gain self-confidence. But, exercise has amazing benefits for your overall mental health, not just your physical health.
- Boost your mood by elevating depression
- Promote muscle and bone strength
- Improve energy levels
- Lower your risk of disease
- Promote skin health
- Improve your memory
- Help relax you
- Reduce pain
- Improve your sex life
On top of all these benefits, you improve your self-confidence. Implement an easy workout routine into your schedule you feel you can accomplish.
To get in some extra exercise you can always strap your child into a baby carrier and leave the house for a walk.
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8. Change Bad Habits
Do you have a bad habit? Then change it by setting small goals to eliminate it or drop the habit all together.
Bad habits like…
- Watching too much TV from your couch
- Eating out all the time
- Drinking too much
can lead to negative impacts in your life. Those negative impacts then begin to wreak havoc on your self-confidence.
For example, if you have the bad habit of eating fast food too often you could begin to gain weight.
Those extra pesky pounds you put on could start to lower your self-confidence and zap your energy levels. It’s a vicious cycle.
Break that vicious cycle by breaking your bad habit!
For many people, time becomes an issue for making the commitment to volunteer. There doesn’t seem to be enough hours in the day between work, family and personal life.
But finding even an hour a week to volunteer to help those in need will have amazing benefits for your self-confidence and overall health!
Volunteering gives you a sense of pride for helping others. With this pride, you can connect with others in your community and find joy.
That pride and joy of volunteering leads to your increased self-esteem.
10. Learn A New Skill
Self-confidence doesn’t just relate to your outer appearance. You can increase your confidence by learning a new skill.
When you learn a new skill or build competence, you nourish your mind. What type of skill would you like to learn about?
Nowadays, you can learn almost anything from the comfort of your own home.
To learn a new skill, hop on your computer and take free online courses from prestigious universities across the country.
Since building and operating Pitter Patter of Baby Feet, I feel it’s a good idea to learn how to code. This winter when I’m snowbound in my house I intend to complete online courses to learn how to code.
11. Finish A Task
Are you a procrastinater? Don’t feel bad. Many people procrastinate projects and other tasks in their daily lives. Including me!
Finally finishing a task is a super easy way to boost your self-confidence.
An easy way to increase your self-esteem fast is by looking around your house for tasks you’ve been putting off way too long.
Wash and fold those piles of clothes in the laundry room.
Collect old clothes and shoes to give to charity.
Finish separating and coordinating your child’s toys to do a toy rotation system.
Whatever it is you need done, finish that task and gain your self-confidence back!
12. Clean Your Living Space
With children, there’s never a moment when you’re not picking up toys. But all the clutter and chaos could start to weigh negatively on your self-esteem.
When your house is not clean or comfortable you will start to have negative thoughts about your ability to maintain a household. It’s important for you to feel comfortable and relaxed in your own home.
So pick up as many toys as you can. Give the living room a quick vacuum. Then kick up your feet and feel confident in the fact you completed a task that was overwhelming you!
13. Avoid Negativity
We all know those type of people who constantly come with drama. Even though it’s not your drama and negativity. Others bringing their negativity to you can cause unneeded stress and anxiety for you.
There’s only so many times you can hear about your coworkers broken heart from another brutal breakup. Save your sanity and avoid negativity!
It may seem heartless at first, but avoid situations or people who put you down or bring unnecessary stress.
14. Spend More Time With Loved Ones
Spend time with people who build you up! Loved ones in your life who support and encourage you will help you build the self-confidence you work hard to keep.
The best way to avoid negativity and spend more time with loved ones is by making a list of people who encourage and love you the most.
Next, put a list of people or situations that cause you stress and anxiety.
People you listed as negative, spend less time with. Instead, devote your time to uplifting positive individuals in your life!
Your mind, heart and self-confidence will thank you!
15. Buy A New Wardrobe
This may seem a little selfish, but your clothes have a lot to do with your self-confidence. Have you ever bought a new outfit you felt great in?
With a new wardrobe you can have that feeling every day!
When’s the last time you’ve bought new clothes for yourself? Not for your child, but for you! I know how it is as a mom.
Your child has brand new clothes all the time and you’re still wearing your maternity underwear from two years ago. I know because I am this mom!
Wearing clothes that fit properly, are comfortable and look good on you are important in getting your self-confidence back after having a baby.
You don’t have to buy a new wardrobe all at once. Start small. Buy a shirt one week and the next week buy a new pair of jeans. That way you don’t run the risk of blowing your budget on clothing.
This is an easy way to get back my self-confidence.
Self-esteem is something that many women everywhere struggle with after having a baby. Our bodies change after pregnancy.
Our weight fluctuates, as well as our hormones. Our needs come second and our children’s needs come first.
When we put everyone else’s care above our own, our self-confidence begins to fade over time.
But you don’t have to live with low self-esteem! Building your self-confidence back up after having a baby doesn’t have to be hard.
By trying these 15 tips you can easily gain your self-confidence back after having a baby!