How I am working towards a new self confidence

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“When a woman says, ‘I have nothing to wear!’, what she really means is,

‘There’s nothing here for who I’m supposed to be today.”

Caitlin Moran

A week today, it’s officially time for me to leave my gorgeous baby bubble, as I return to work from maternity leave.  However, unlike the first time around when I returned after Henry, there is a definite shift in my heart and a new inner confidence.

Looking back to then, I had such an incredibly low self-esteem, due to how my body had changed and how I no longer felt ‘fashionable’.  Working in the fashion industry, with an office full of trendy young woman, I instantly felt inferior.  I just wanted to snap back to my previous weight, minus the sleep-deprived bags under my eyes, oh and maybe without the hair loss (thank you very much).  But I didn’t.  I had a new body and rather than embrace it, I just started to compare myself to others.

Why do we do this to ourselves?  Why do we fill our minds with negative self-talk after we’ve birthed babies?  We should be celebrating ourselves and embracing the body that made a life.

So with that in mind, today I wanted to share with you the 5 reasons I feel like I’m in a different place 2nd time around.  These are my mini confidence boosting tips that I will be taking back with me to the office.  However, before I share these tips I have a disclaimer… I still have my hang-ups about my body and you never know, come next Monday I may just fall apart. I’m still a long way from accepting my new body, but at least I’m on the journey and if what I am saying resonates with you, I would love you to come on the journey with me.

The pressure to not look tired. Is near impossible. 

Have you ever met a mother who isn’t tired?  If we just accept it and not feel so caught up about it, it wouldn’t play such a negative role in our day.  That moment when you wake up in the morning, just get up.  Lately, Georgie has been waking around 4.30am and at that moment, I usually feel wide awake.  In the past I would settle him and go back to sleep, only waking later feeling like complete death.

I now embrace it as me time.  Those precious morning moments, as the sun comes up, is just for me.  Currently, I use it to plan my day or social media posts for Mummy Style, however, come next week, this will be my time to get ready.  Rather than having the morning rush once the boys wake, I will hopefully be ready to greet them looking a little more polished, which should give me a mini confidence boost to take on the day.  Being tired won’t look too bad after all.

“I feel like my body will never be the same”… It probably won’t. 

Finding the time and energy to exercise after having a baby can be a struggle, especially when it feels like you’re giving every piece of yourself to a little person.  Coupled with comparing your body to your old self, you are already in a negative space.

My approach lately has been to set realistic goals.  I know I can eat healthily (minus the recent Easter eggs) and I know that I can walk Georgie in the pram to the shops if I don’t have time to run.  I’ve also stopped declaring that I’ll “bounce back” to my pre-baby weight in one week and instead focus on the positives exercising gives.  Which are a clearer mind and stronger body, remember energy creates energy.

Start focusing on self-love.  You can do it.

If we are honest with ourselves, wanting to look different isn’t a new notion for us. In my 20s I wanted smaller boobs, long straight hair (still d0), slimmer upper arms, now my attention has just shifted someplace else.  So why has becoming a mother took such a dramatic change in my confidence?

I have been trying to focus lately on self-love.  If I could love myself even an ounce of what my boys love me, wow, I would feel like a supermodel.  Rekindling my old love of fashion has given me a new perspective on dressing up.  You don’t have to have a certain shape to try a new trend, you just have to seek the pieces that enhance your gorgeous bits.  Inner confidence can only come from you.  Style is my life, maybe focussing on a hobby will help shift your energy too.

Celebrate motherhood in style.  Plan your wardrobe. 

Lastly, I wouldn’t be me without returning to work armed with a new wardrobe.  First time around I went shopping with Henry and squeezed him, me, the pram and an armful of clothes into the fitting room.  Nothing fit me right, Henry was crying and I began to cry.  It was an awful experience that I have been keen to avoid.  I also didn’t have a list of what I needed, so that shopping journey was a failure from the start.

This time, I have my list and online shopping.  Last week I tackled the attic and pulled down the clothes I felt would still fit and had an epic try on.  I found some great wardrobe staples to work from and began to list what I felt I needed.  Then using my early hour morning me time, I shopped online.  I created Pinterest boards of what I love and build myself a capsule wardrobe.  I also threw in some fashion trend bits for the days when I need an extra pick me up.

My aim is to build a beautifully wearable wardrobe that I will look and feel good in.  This is the perfect opportunity to reinvent yourself, ready to the office to meet the new gorgeous and confident you.

If you have any tips on building self-confidence, particularly for going back to work, I would love to hear them below x 

Gorgeous Oriental Button Through Pyjamas at Next

Photographs by Katie Fallon Photography

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