Podcast Episode #36

Cultivating a Strong Mindset in Motherhood: Kristin Laffrey

Motherhood can sometimes be hard, and it is extremely common for women to doubt themselves and worry they’re not doing a good job as a mother. We all struggle with the demands of motherhood at times, and mindset, and it can be a battle to not feel deflated, uninspired and stressed out. This episode with Kristin Laffrey will help you with cultivating a strong mindset after birth and in motherhood.

My guest today is the lovely Kristin Laffrey, a Mindset and Mindfulness Coach whose mission is to support other mums in their journeys of releasing negative self-talk, limiting beliefs and past emotions to create a life they love without the guilt, anxiety and overwhelm, to help with cultivating a strong mindset after birth, and in motherhood.

In this episode, Kristin talks about the beliefs that hold women back from embodying confidence in motherhood, particularly in the early postpartum period after childbirth. We dive into how a woman’s beliefs shape her expectations on the role of a mum and how these expectations can prevent mums from being able to fully experience motherhood after the birth of their baby.

Kristin shares the moment when she felt her identity shift after the birth of her baby. It wasn’t until she started the journey of reconnecting with herself that she realised there was something deeper in that moment, and it was the moment when she felt she was re-introduced to herself again, this time as a mum. As Kristin went through her journey, she realised the shifts that had occurred within herself and her identity.

Motherhood can be hard. Motherhood at times isn’t easy. But this episode is a must listen for all mums and pregnant women. You will be encouraged and inspired to embrace motherhood and reconnect with yourself in a brand new way. Send Kath a message and let her know what you think of this episode!

Episode Links

LINKS:

Where to find Kristin:

Website: https://themotherhoodhub.com/

Instagram:@the_motherhood_hub 

Podcast: Recreate Your Motherhood

Episodes mentioned in this episode:

How to build a more loving relationship with your body

Mindfulness with Bridget Murphy

Postnatal Return to Running program: https://www.fitnestmama.com/running

Quick Quiz:https://www.fitnestmama.com/quiz

Free Pregnancy Workshop: 3 Ways to Prepare for Labour: www.fitnestmama.com/challenge

Website: https://www.fitnestmama.com/

Instagram: @fitnestmama

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Cultivating a Strong Mindset in Motherhood with Kristin: Birth Story

Transcription

INTRODUCTION

If you are pregnant or you’ve recently had a baby, this podcast is for you. I am your host Kath Baquie. a physiotherapist working in women’s health and mum of three. Join me each week as we dive into all things pregnancy care, childbirth, and postnatal recovery, helping you have a wonderful pregnancy and afterbirth experience. And don’t forget to hit subscribe so you don’t miss any episodes.

KATH BAQUIE

Well, Hi there, welcome to Episode 36 of the FitNest Mama Podcast. And this episode is all about cultivating a strong mindset in motherhood with Kristin Laffrey. So as a mindset and mindfulness coach Kristin supports modern-day mums to gain clarity and direction in their life after having children to rediscover who they are, and consciously decide how they want to show up in their life. Combining her qualifications as certified neuro-linguistic programming sets NLP practitioner with her personal journey as a mother, Kristin’s mission is to support other mums through their journey of releasing negative self-talk, limiting beliefs, and past emotions to create a life they love without the guilt, anxiety and overwhelm.

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It is extremely common for women to constantly doubt themselves and feel that they aren’t doing a good job in motherhood. And in this episode, we discuss the beliefs that hold women back from embodying competence in motherhood, and particularly that early motherhood and postpartum period.

So we dive into how a woman’s belief system shapes her expectations on the role of a mum and the motherhood experience. We discuss how these expectations can prevent mothers from being able to fully experience motherhood. So this is a must listen for all mums to be and mums. And I really did leave this interview, with Kristin feeling refocused and ready to embrace motherhood.

Before we dive into this episode, I do just want to let you know that the 5 days 5 ways to prepare for labour challenge it’s about to run it again really soon at the start of June. So get your names down on the waitlist so you don’t miss out. This fun free five-day challenge runs you through different ways to prepare for labour. And in these five days you will learn about perinatal preparation, active birth techniques, afterbirth recovery tips, and you will leave the five days feeling empowered, and more confident about your upcoming birth. To enter this challenge, head to https://fitnestmama.com/challenge, right, let’s get into this episode.

Well, hello, Kristin, and thank you for joining me today on the podcast.

KRISTIN LAFFREY

I’m so excited to be here.

KATH BAQUIE

It’s amazing. So could you please for everyone who doesn’t know you, could you introduce yourself and let us know who you are and what you do?

KRISTIN LAFFREY

Absolutely. So my name is Kristin, and I’m a mindset and mindfulness coach. My business is a motherhood hub. And I basically support mums to really reconnect with themselves in motherhood. A lot of the work I do is about connecting with women to who they are underneath the mum, and it’s a really big part of my work is recognizing that you are a mum, but there’s so much more of you. And this identity shift that women go through when they become mums is something I’m passionate about because it’s based on my own experience. I’m also a mom of two myself, I have an almost two-year-old and an almost one-year-old. And I’ve been through this journey myself. So for me, it’s about supporting and coaching other women through their own journey of really discovering who they want to be in their life once they’re a mom.

KATH BAQUIE

So can you tell me a bit about your experience? Like obviously, there was a bit of a profound change for you to want to really dive into this area. How did you find the whole introduction to motherhood?

KRISTIN LAFFREY

It’s interesting because I’ll share with you a story about the most profound moment of my identity shift but I didn’t realize at the time, but when my daughter was first born, we just had these beautiful two hours I think it was just spending with her after she was born and then we went to transition into our room and the nurse took me into the bathroom to have a shower before I went and I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror and I remember saying to my husband, I don’t even recognize myself. And obviously in that moment from head to toe physically I was a different person. I was so swollen, everything physically was different. But it wasn’t until I started this journey of reconnecting with myself that I realized there was something deeper in that moment. It was the time that I feel like it was the moment when I was introduced to myself again, as a mum. And that has become this moment for me that I reflect back on. And I look back on in my journey, because I didn’t realize how much of a shift had occurred when I become a mum.

But as I went through my journey, I realized the things that really lit me up before becoming a mum no longer did, I no longer wanted to return to my corporate job, where I’d spent 10 years working my way up to a management position. And I had this moment where I just I didn’t want that anymore. And I realized that I became a mom, and I stepped away from my career. And my identity of my job. And the company I worked for was removed from me, I realized that I actually didn’t know who I was underneath that. And I think for me, I’d realized that so much of my life, I had connected who I was to my job, the company I worked for, and it really led me down this path of really questioning well, who was I now outside of the profession? And yeah, that’s where I kind of started this whole journey of self-discovery, which led me down the path of mindset, because I realized the impact that mindset had on my life as a mum, I had applied it to my corporate job, but never thought to apply mindset to my own life. And mindset combined with mindfulness has just had such an incredible shift in my life and the life of my clients as well.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah. Right. So you’re talking about mindfulness from a perspective of reclaiming your identity, or, you know, coming to terms with your new identity? Is that right?

KRISTIN LAFFREY

Yeah, why fill in mindfulness is there’s kind of two parts. I mean, firstly, it really is about navigating emotion, I think that’s a really big part of this is because emotion is a really big reason that we can’t connect with ourselves. Because we’re so caught up in reacting that we kind of need to push that aside and say, what’s underneath the emotion. And so a really big part of mindfulness is actually being in that emotion experiencing it and understanding what is this telling me about myself, but it’s also the beliefs as well. And it’s connecting the mindset to calming your mind to actually understand what is going on underneath this overwhelm. And to really just calm your mind and connect with what’s happening underneath that. And that’s a really big part of the mindfulness is, it’s the techniques that actually allow you to slow down to become calm, and to actually give you the opportunity to connect with yourself in terms of the identity.

KATH BAQUIE

So interesting. Like before I had children, I know mindfulness, it’s much bigger in the last few years, you know, you’d be able to correct me if I’m wrong, but there’s more awareness about the benefits of mindset and mindfulness. But before I had children, it was considered a bit, you know, airy fairy didn’t need a, what’s all this about? Who needs to meditate? And then now, as a mother of three, you know, life’s just getting busier. I am just loving all this stuff more and more and wanting to learn more about it, because I’m really, from a personal perspective, really, feeling like, we need it, i need it in order to really feel good. And what excel?

KRISTIN LAFFREY

Yeah, and thrive.

KATH BAQUIE

Thrive. That’s the word I’m looking for thrive.

KRISTIN LAFFREY

I completely agree. And I think that we’re a lot more aware these days, also in terms of the impact we have on our children and their own development and their belief systems as well. And I think this is a really big part of the work is we’re starting to realize now that as parents, we ultimately shape how our kids grow up the beliefs they have the habits they have. And you know, a really big part of this work, particularly the mindset space is, if you want to like for me personally, I wanted to be able to raise my children to believe in themselves, to know that anything is possible to believe that I mean, that there’s so much potential for them. But I needed to believe that for myself first. And there’s so many mindset shifts there are around deciding that you’re going to create the belief system you want for yourself so that your children can have that as well. And I think that now that we’re so much more aware of these things, I think we’re making a conscious decision to actually create the change that we want for ourselves, but also for them as well.

KATH BAQUIE

It’s really interesting. And what you’re saying I reckon, personally, again, is there’s a big mindset shift, or a big change that happens when you first have babies, because obviously your whole world is different. But now I’m noticing because my youngest is three turning four and I’ve got to it school. So getting towards all three kids being at school and I’m noticing amongst my friends, there’s another shift happening now that I guess all the children, you know, care like some five days a week, and maybe the mums are going back to work more. And it’s really interesting seeing a new shift happening. So I think yeah, it’s fascinating. I guess that probably happens throughout life, doesn’t it?

KRISTIN LAFFREY

It does. And that’s right. I love that you brought that up. Because I think sometimes we think that it literally just is in that moment of becoming a mum. And every woman is different in terms of this shift. And it is just really questioning, like, who am I? And what do I want with my life now, and for a lot of women, that is when they become pregnant, for me even thinking about having children, there was a huge shift there around like, what does that look like? What does my career look like? But then having children but then so many stages throughout motherhood, you’re right, like there are so many times where there’s significant external change, which then creates some sort of shift internally as well.

KATH BAQUIE

What do you feel are the main issues that women are coming up against when it comes to mindset, and that sort of things?

KRISTIN LAFFREY

I think the biggest issues that I see is, like we spoke about the identity shift. But also on top of that I briefly spoke about this calming yourself, right. And I don’t think there’s any other experience in life that tests your emotions, like being a mum, and I talk about emotional triggers. And our children are in some way, like our greatest emotional triggers. Because what it does though, is it gives us insight into what is happening within us. And this is where the beliefs come into it. And the mindset side of it is that, you know, sometimes it might be as simple as your toddler asking for water for the third time that absolutely just break through your head. And it’s the simplest thing, and this is what we need to realize is that sometimes it’s not what’s actually happening externally. It’s what’s going on within me that’s actually causing this reaction. So I definitely feel that calmness is a really big part of this, connecting to your emotions. And even just being able to feel emotion and navigate that connection as well, I think is a really big one. I think that a lot of mums’ experience loneliness, on the journey and motherhood. And a big thing for me in terms of loneliness was realizing that it wasn’t just about how many people I had around me, it was also about the depth of my connection as well. And a really big part of that being able to connect with other people is to understand who you are, as well. So it does kind of come back to you once again, who am I, and then being able to connect with people that have similar interest to you. And yeah, I guess that’s what really creates this, this connection that we crave in motherhood.

And I’d probably say the final one would be confidence. This is something that I see so many women struggle with, they become mums, and maybe before they became a mum, they had this successful corporate career, and then they become a mum, and they’ve, they’ve read all the books, they’ve tried to do everything that they possibly could to be, “the best mom possible”. And it doesn’t work like that sometimes, you know, and I think we need to recognize that this journey of understanding ourselves, understanding our children, and not allowing ourselves to lose their competence, because we don’t know how to do things, right.

KATH BAQUIE

I love the fact that you talk about it as a journey. Because you know, one day things might not go according to plan, and I say plan with inverted commas. But then you know that it’s the journey, and there’s always tomorrow and try again.

KRISTIN LAFFREY

Absolutely. And it is and I think like you were saying before, I mean, we’re also growing and evolving over the course of motherhood, which could be 10 years, 20 years of that, like really being in the depth of motherhood, right? And I think that’s why we need to recognize is that there is no real end point. It’s just this journey along the way, and just continuing to grow and evolve and step into how we want to live our life as a mom.

KATH BAQUIE

So let’s say we’re recognizing that we perhaps need to pay some attention to this area, what are our steps? What can we do?

KRISTIN LAFFREY

The best bit of advice I can give is that if you’re navigating this journey alone, the best advice I can give you is to get curious, because we don’t ask ourselves a lot of questions. Like I was saying before, if there’s something that triggers quite a big emotional response, ask yourself, what is the cause for this? Why do I feel like this? But we don’t allow ourselves to be curious and actually be in the experience, we’re so quick to kind of move through it and get on with the day. And what I just encourage you to do is allow it to be insight into your own experience your own journey. And like I said, get curious, ask questions, because I think we’d be surprised sometimes how much we can actually learn about ourselves when we give ourselves the time to actually question who we are and how we’re feeling and why we’re feeling like that as well.

KATH BAQUIE

But if you’re interested in this, check out Episode number 16 how to build a more loving relationship with yourself and your body. She’s a mindset coach as well. And then we also have “Mindfulness with Bridget Murphy”, who is she’s from the truest you so also a holistic health coach. So it’s really interesting that you’re, all three of you are echoing the same thing. So when we’re in the moment, so for example, for me, my moment is probably at the height of dinner time. Everyone’s a bit tired. My toddler is. No, she’s not really can I call my three-year-old toddler? It’s so sad. I’m nearly out of that phase. Toddler. I keep calling her toddler. And then I think, Oh my gosh, she’s no longer toddler. Anyway, she’s very good at pushing the buttons and asking, asking, asking, yelling, screaming. At that stage, I need to ask myself, why am I feeling like this? Take a pause and reflect.

KRISTIN LAFFREY

Yeah, and sometimes it can just be in that moment that sometimes we go through our days. And we’re given these challenges and these obstacles, and I like to think of it as we’re given a rock. And so we’re going through a day and we’re given a rock, the first rock doesn’t feel heavy. But then we go through our day, we collect more rocks, we collect more rocks. And we get to this point where Yeah, maybe it is the toddler asking for something for the third time that completely breaks us. But it’s because we haven’t allowed ourselves that opportunity to just release any emotion that’s built up, or really just tuning with ourselves or give back to ourselves that the smallest thing can be what triggers or what sends us over the top. And I think it’s just worth tuning in with that, that this is why it’s so important to give back to ourselves, is because it could just be the smallest thing that happens. That is just that little bit too heavy, right? But really just brings us down. And yeah, it’s a really big part of the mindfulness side, but also in terms of the mindset like you saying, questioning that, because we don’t realize that our belief systems have built in predominantly the first seven years of our life, and then influenced by experiences and trauma throughout our life. But sometimes it takes us particularly as a mom to tune in with, how will we raise what was modelled to us in terms of being a mum. And sometimes that takes digging deep, but that’s where a lot of our foundation comes from in terms of what it means to be a mom and what it looks like in terms of motherhood.

KATH BAQUIE

And what you said before about giving back to you, I’m assuming that doesn’t need to be anything major or big, but even giving us the self the chance to reflect on how you’re feeling that’s, would you say that that’s giving back to you a little bit?

KRISTIN LAFFREY

Absolutely. I feel, you know, we talk about self-care. And sometimes it actually is just tuning in with what do I need? Like, it could literally just be I need to have a drink of water. I’m feeling thirsty, or like, you know, as the mum, sometimes we don’t even take time to drink enough water or to eat healthy food or, but it is. That’s most of the time it’s tuning in with what do I need? How do I need to look after myself? And that might be taking a moment to yourself that might be putting on some music that just gives you energy, but it’s just what do I need? How do I need to look after myself? And it can it can be simple things. It can be things that involve the kids, it doesn’t need to be something where we take ourselves away, go to the day spa for half a day. It literally could be things like putting on a song you love that just really energizes you and gives you that that little bit of energy need to get you through bath time dinner time and put the kids down to bed.

KATH BAQUIE

I guess everyone will be different to what do they need?

KRISTIN LAFFREY

Yeah. And I think that’s why the question is so significant is that no one can tell you what you need. And I think this is the thing, it’s very easy to put together a list of these are all the things you should do that will make you feel good, but only you know, what brings you joy, what gives you energy, what makes you feel good? And it sounds so simple, but it’s actually just tuning in with what do I need today? How do I feel? Why do I feel like this? And if we do that more often, we’re so much more connected to how we feel. And in creating any change, we need any shifts to actually support us through our day.

KATH BAQUIE

And as a result of doing that, we’ll all be happier, nicer mothers.

KRISTIN LAFFREY

Yeah, and I think this is the thing, this is what we ultimately want. Right? And I think and this is what I love about doing I call it the inner work because it is it’s connecting to yourself is that you’re only ever going to make yourself happier and feel better by actually tuning in with yourself and what you need and everyone around you is only ever going to benefit from that. And I think sometimes we place the emphasis so much on externally, you know, how do I become a better mom? How do I you know, be better in my business in my career. When it comes back to you firstly, right and everyone else everything else is only ever going to benefit if you put yourself first.

KATH BAQUIE

Okay, so what you’ve just said is a massive one for I guess cultivating a strong mindset and laying those foundations. Is there anything else that we can do to really help our mindset and everything in motherhood?

KRISTIN LAFFREY

Like I said most importantly, get curious but also as well take the time to do this and I know it sounds so silly, but you writing down things. But it first starts with identifying what’s my challenge here that I’m facing? Is it that I don’t have confidence in myself? Is it that I’m caught up in my mind constantly feeling busy feeling overwhelmed? Is it that I just don’t have any clarity or inspiration in terms of what I’m doing now where I’m going, but really connecting with that, what is the challenge here? How do I feel? And you’re only ever going to be able to make changes, particularly in the mindset space, once you actually identify how you’re feeling, why you feel like that. And what you can actually then start to do to create the change. But yeah, absolutely. Come back to getting curious, asking yourself questions, and taking time when you can to really connect with your thoughts. Because your thoughts have such an impact on your emotion, how you’re feeling, and ultimately how you connect with other people as well.

KATH BAQUIE

So I’m putting you on the spot here. Because everything he said, like it’s great in theory, and it all sounds brilliant. Could you give us an example of a mum who’s come to see you who and let us know what challenges she’s had? What did she do and what was the outcome?

KRISTIN LAFFREY

Surprisingly, most of the women I work with have had corporate careers before becoming a mum, and really feel stuck and confused in terms of what’s next for them. The biggest challenge I see that most of them are facing is the resistance in making decisions. So there’s this feeling of feeling stuck, feeling confused, not knowing what’s next. But that resistance is ultimately feeling pulled towards something. So something you want to do, but there’s something holding you back, right, and that’s that poll there. What that is most of the time is fear. Most of the time, it’s either fear, or it’s self-doubt. And so for most of the women, I say it’s fear of being seen differently to how they were before they were a mum, right? They had these successful careers, and maybe they don’t want to go back, maybe they just want to stay at home and be a mum, maybe they want to start their business. But it means that they have to start from square one again. But most of the time, there’s fear there. They’re self-doubt there. This is something I say all the time fear of judgment, if your failure, fear of being seen differently, which is it sounds bizarre, but it is. It’s when you start to have this shift, and then you want to start to express that to the world. You’re worried about how be received, what sort of feedback you’ll get. And this is particularly what I see for a lot of women, I work with women that have had incredible successful corporate careers and don’t want to do that anymore. They want to spend more time with their family have the flexibility, and do something that’s more meaningful. And I think sometimes what we find with being a mom is that we step away from our job, and we spend this time with our children. And there’s this deeper level of satisfaction, this deeper level of love that we experience. And the contrast then to go back to a job that you don’t love seems really extreme. And yeah, this is something that I see so often. But the biggest thing there, like I said, is the fear and the self-doubt that just tends to keep people stuck.

KATH BAQUIE

So what’s the first few steps for them for that fear and self-doubt and getting unstuck?

KRISTIN LAFFREY

Yeah, I guess the biggest thing, I mean, a lot of the work I do is diving into beliefs and belief systems. And so a lot of the work I do is understanding where is this fear coming from? Where is this resistance coming from? But just ask yourself, like, what is what is keeping me stuck? If you were to think of it as this resistance, this push pulls, what are you being pulled towards? And what is actually pulling you back? Because when you start to identify that it seems like you’re stuck, but you’re not there, slight movement in every direction. And I think when you can start to separate the two and say, Okay, this is what I ultimately want to do. But this is what’s keeping me stuck. So I think if you can start to separate the two, you can start to create little cracks, I guess, in this foundation to say okay, well, this is what’s actually keeping me stuck. So how can I start to navigate this? How can I see myself differently? How can I see myself capable to actually move forward?

KATH BAQUIE

Amazing. So to wrap it all up any advice for pregnant mums listening or mums in the thick of it in that newborn haze? If you could just give one piece of wisdom? What would it be?

KRISTIN LAFFREY

I think it would just be to recognize this as a journey, we forget that motherhood really is an emotional, spiritual, mental journey that we go on. And I think it’s worth checking in with that to recognize that you just have to take one step after another. And as long as you’re focusing on the direction of where you want to go, what you want to create, every small movement that’s going to get you there is actually going to create change. So really focus on that. See it as a journey and whatever stage of the journey you’re in. just embrace that, because it does get easier. It does get better as you start to find that clarity and direction.

KATH BAQUIE

Amazing. Well, thank you, Kristen, I think no matter where you are at in your motherhood journey, I think it’s always great to come back to this topic and this question and just sort of ground ourselves and I think hopefully it’ll be really beneficial to everyone listening. So if you are listening to this, come and DM, myself and Kristin on Instagram and Kristin, where can everyone find you?

KRISTIN LAFFREY

Yeah, so I’m over at the motherhood hub on Instagram. I also have my podcast, Free Create Your Motherhood”, so jump over and have a listen to that as well. But they’re definitely my two favourite platforms to connect with people.

KATH BAQUIE

Brilliant, and I’ll be speaking to you soon on your podcast as well.

KRISTIN LAFFREY

Yeah, I can’t wait.

KATH BAQUIE

Thank you so much, Kristin, for joining me today. Love it.

KRISTIN LAFFREY

Thank you for having me.

KATH BAQUIE

And before I sign off, remember my team and I will be putting together the Show Notes for this episode with all the links at https://fitnestmama.com/podcast, including how to connect with Kristin, and how to join our Free 5 Days 5 Ways to Prepare for Labour Challenge. And lastly, if you are enjoying this podcast to be able to leave a rating and review would mean the world to me not only does it make my day, but it also really helps this podcast get discovered by other pregnant and new mums who might really benefit from listening to a few of these podcast episodes. So have a fabulous day everyone. And I look forward to you joining me next week for another episode of the FitNest Mama Podcast.

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