The Mindful Way through Trying to Conceive
Why this course?
I want to help other women to feel safe, supported and themselves as they try to conceive (TTC). It's a course I wish I'd had access to when I was trying to conceive my first child.
Like most of us, my TTC journey started out so exciting, so full of anticipation and hope. I suppose I'd expected it to happen instantly and I had no idea that my longing for a child would become so overwhelming and consuming. That every month would start to feel like a year. Punctuated by stress, anxiety, disappointment and fear.
I started to lose myself and couldn't recognise some of my feelings and behaviour as mine:
Who was this person obsessing over temperature charts and the fertility boosting properties of pineapple juice?
And how could it be that even seeing pregnant women or newborns made me want to cry?
When did sex stop being fun and romantic?
If this sounds familiar, this course is for you.
How can mindfulness help?
When I was trying to conceive, well-intended advice from friends ranged from 'don't think about it. What will be will be' to 'think positively! Will it to happen!'
The conflicting advice not only confused me but made me a failure twice over. Maybe I wasn't meant to be a mother when I couldn't even control my own mind! I certainly couldn't stop thinking about it and I obviously wasn't positive enough because I STILL wasn't pregnant!
No one said to me 'hey Jenny, these feelings are HARD. Let's explore them with kindness and curiosity'.
No one told me that our minds do crazy stuff and it's OK because I am not my thoughts.
And no one said, 'You're not alone, all women wanting a baby feel like this at times, give yourself some patience and love'.
Mindfulness will help you discover the power of turning towards your thoughts, of exploring them with curiosity and kindness. It will teach you the invaluable skill of stepping back from thoughts and feelings and staying connected to your true self, making your TTC journey one that you can navigate with ease, patience and self-compassion; whatever the outcome may be.
What does the Mindful Way through TTC include?
Using mindfulness, ACT (acceptance and commitment therapy), meditation and yoga at each stage of your menstrual cycle we'll turn towards your feelings and experiences to help better deal with the inevitable ups and downs. As a result of the course you will be better able to navigate the cycle of stress, anxiety, disappointment that can come with trying to conceive, feeling a greater sense of acceptance and ease with all outcomes.
The course is divided into 4 parts, linked to your menstrual cycle (based on an average 28-day cycle but adaptable to all). Each module will include:
- an overview video with mindfulness practices and tips for this part of your cycle,
- debunking common myths and stories we tell ourselves,
- everyday mindfulness activities to include in daily life,
- mini guided meditations,
- one longer guided meditation,
- short yoga sequence suitable for this part of your cycle,
- journaling activities.
All course participants will have access to our private online community to support you and remind you that you're not lost or insane or alone.
Will this course help me to conceive?
It is not the intention of this course. The only honest answer is 'it might'. Mindfulness and yoga have been proven to lower stress levels, which has also been linked to an increased likelihood of conception. However, the aim of this course is to make your TTC journey less stressful and isolating and more peaceful and even fun!
Unfortunately, there will always be some couples who will not become parents and others who will need help to do so.
I've never done yoga / I'm not physically fit. Is this course for me?
Yes! The yoga sequences are completely optional and you can skip them if you wish. However, they are designed for beginners, so they will be accessible for most people.
I've never meditated or practised mindfulness, is this course for me?
Definitely! You don't need any special skills or background. The course will assume you are a beginner but is suitable even for experienced meditators.
I'm going through IVF, can I use this course?
Yes. I think having a mindfulness practice can be even more valuable in the emotionally-charged experience of IVF. There are some notes in the programme about how the different parts relate to IVF cycles and you can reach out to me at any point for guidance.
I have really irregular cycles / PCOS. Can I still use the program?
Yes! Definitely. This course is for all people trying to conceive and you can stay on each part of the course for as long or as short as you need.
Want to know more? Click below to enrol.
A special thanks to Asha Phillips, fellow mindfulness teacher and psychotherapist with 35 years' experience specializing in couples, parenting, pregnancy and children, for her valuable input and feedback on this course.