This week on the MLN Podcast we’re going to be talking all about mindset! You guys should know by now that I’m ALL about getting you in the right headspace when it comes to birth.
Your mind is not only your most powerful tool during birth, but it can also be your worst enemy. It takes a lot of self-control, and practice, to be able to talk back to your brain during birth – and that’s exactly what we’re going to be talking about today, with my special guest, Natalie Bacon!
If you’ve been out in the blogging world at all in the past 5 years, you know who Natalie Bacon is! Personally, I’ve been following her story ever since I started blogging, and I’m a total fan-girl of her work. Natalie Bacon is a life coach who helps women, and now more specifically moms, reignite their lives.
Her coaching philosophy is based on looking into the mindset of what her clients are thinking, bringing awareness to subconscious thoughts, and then helping her clients decide deliberately what stays and what goes. She’s actually pregnant herself also, due this winter, and I thought it would be so great to have her on the podcast to talk all about mindset shifts – but let’s make it birth-related!
In this episode we talk about educating yourself, being open to change, pain coping techniques, listening to what your body is telling you, and so much more! Let’s dive right!
Education is key to eliminating birth anxiety
I loved getting the chance to chat with Natalie, a mindset and life coach expert about birth. And to kick off our conversation you’ll hear her talk about the power and importance of education when it comes to labor to erase anxiety. The fact that she started our episode this way made me feel SO good, because you know we’re all about education to erase the unknowns.
We talk at length about the power of education, research, and an open mind, a conversation every single mama can benefit from hearing!
More specifically, when you tune in you’ll hear Natalie talk about why hearing other people’s birth stories is so powerful, how education can help prepare you, and how the anxiety we feel before birth is very similar to the “performance anxiety” we might feel before a big speech or starring a play. It’s more of an exciting kind of anxiety than generalized anxiety. Understanding that difference can help us address it more effectively.
Mindset shifts to use during birth
Next, I ask Natalie if she can talk about some specific mindset shift strategies to use during birth. I wanted her to give our listeners some actionable advice of what they can when things don’t go as planned during birth or postpartum – or anytime in life really!
Here’s a bit of what she had to say:
“So I call this your inner coach and your inner critic. And we all have both, and you basically want to talk back to your inner critic. And most of us just think that whatever our mental chatter, whatever the voice in our head is telling us has to be the way it is. And instead, what I say is, that just might be your inner critic, let’s bring your inner coach out and see what she says.
And I think that this takes a little bit more thinking. So if you can do this ahead of time and kind of get some phrases, or it could be affirmations or things, how you would want to coach yourself, when things aren’t going according to plan.
So let’s say something changes, it’s not exactly what you had planned for, how do you realistically want to think and feel about it. So you might not want to be, this is the best thing ever, because you don’t really believe that that wasn’t your first choice. But you also don’t have to go where your inner critic wants to go, which is, this is the worst thing ever.
Instead, is there space in the middle for you to coach yourself and say, well, this isn’t my first choice. But I’m here, I can do this. Let’s make the best decision given what we know now.”
When you listen in, you’ll hear her expand on the importance of practicing this before you’re in it. Especially because standing up to medical professionals or having the courage to ask lots of questions can feel scary and intimidating when you’re in it.
Natalie’s birth preferences
Towards the end of the episode, I turn the tables on Natalie and ask if she’d be comfortable sharing a bit about HER preferences and mindset for her upcoming birth. It was so interesting to hear her answer!
Natalie is keeping a flexible mindset but has already changed her stance so much based on her own personal research and birth education ahead of birth. She thought she would 100% opt for a C-Section but has since swung the other way after learning more.
She is keeping a healthy and realistic mindset about what to expect and thing potentially not going as planned. It was really fascinating to hear someone so in tune and passionate about mindset talk about how they’re personally preparing, and I really think you’re going to love listening in!
About Natalie Bacon
Natalie Bacon is a Certified Mindfulness Life Coach for moms. She helps moms do the inner work to overcome daily challenges and live a more purpose-driven life. She has a five-star rated podcast and hosts an online community for moms called Grow You.
In her personal life, Natalie lives in Charleston, South Carolina with her husband and two puppies. They’re expecting their first baby boy in the winter of 2022!