Design Your Dream Life with Natalie Bacon | Mom-To-Be Mindset Tips

The news is out—I’m pregnant! And with that, has come an entirely different experience than I imagined (spoiler alert: it’s been a lot harder for me than I could’ve ever known).

This led to so many mindset shifts for me during my first trimester that I’m delighted to bring you here today.

So much of what I’ve discovered applies regardless of if you’re pregnant or whether you’re going through a different type of physical change or transition (like a broken leg or a diagnosis).

So, if you’ve experienced a recent physical change and you want to know how best to think about it, this episode is for you.

In this episode, I’m sharing some mom-to-be mindset tips that will be helpful if you are experiencing a challenging pregnancy or going through a challenging time physically.

If you’re a mom, you’re in the right place. This is a space for you to do the inner work and become more mindful. I can help you unbusy your time, reduce anxiety and overwhelm, and live every day a little more soulfully and purpose driven. Click here to learn more about Grow You, my virtual life coaching program.


What You’ll Learn from this Episode:
  • What the “messy middle” is and how to work through it.
  • Specific mindset tips if you are a mom-to-be.
  • How to change your capacity of what 100% looks like.
  • The importance of making sure you rest.
  • How to honor what your body needs.
  • Some questions to ask yourself to give yourself what you need regardless of your circumstances.
Listen to the Full Episode:


Show Resources:
Full Episode Transcript:

Welcome to the Design Your Dream Life Podcast where it’s all about designing your life on your terms and now your host, Natalie Bacon.

Hey there and welcome to the podcast. I am so excited to share the big news I’m pregnant. How fun is that? I’m so overjoyed. Steve is thrilled. We will be expanding our husband, wife, and two puppies to a family of five with our sweet one who is due this winter. So fun.

We have wanted to get pregnant and we got pregnant. It has been pretty horrible for me. And it’s really led me to this podcast episode. And I’m going to give you some mindset tips for moms to be. So if you know anyone who is pregnant, please send them this episode. It feels like everyone in my life is pregnant. Now it’s like that phenomenon where your brain just notices the car that you’ve been shopping for all over the road. It’s like that like everyone in my life is pregnant. So I’ve had so much support, which has been amazing.

I have had doctors, I have amazing support with Steve and family and I’m taking medicine and all of the things. So I’m really well supported here, but I just want to talk about how hard it has been for me up to this point. This airs, it’s coming out the end of July, middle end of July, third week of July. And, I’m into the second trimester now. And it’s still really, really hard.

I think it was a little bit harder than it is now in the beginning, but it’s still so relative that I feel very uncomfortable standing and walking, unless I’m like hunched over, I can only do it for a very short time. My main sort of pain would just be nausea. So it’s like 24/7 nausea in the stomach. Like I imagine getting punched in the stomach and it just feels like that all day.

And it’s so fascinating to me to have wanted this so badly and have it be so hard. So of course I don’t wish it were different. Of course I want to be going through this. I want to become a mom. I want to grow our family. And yet it is still hard. And I was thinking about the things that have been pretty easy for me to do. Like I quit drinking. That was pretty easy. I lost 25 pounds. That was pretty easy. Built my business. Of course there are failures along the way, but generally pretty easy, but then there have been the other things that have been really hard for me. I think dating and really choosing good, healthy partners who are a good match for me, that was something that was so hard and took me a decade to figure out. And this, this is really hard.

Being pregnant is so hard. It’s for sure the hardest thing I’ve ever done physically. And I sort of give you those examples because I know for so many women, I have a really good friend shout out to Tiffany. Hi Tiffany. She has a little one who’s just under a year old and her pregnancy was incredibly easy from what she said, right.

She just felt so pretty good most of the time. And it was easy. And the same with my hairstylist in Chicago, she had a pretty easy pregnancy, but I remember getting my hair done and my stylist talking about how there was another stylist in the salon who had the complete opposite experience and how hard it was for her. And she was really nauseous, just like me. And then my brother’s surgeon friend’s wife who’s a professor also reached out to me and she has had really extreme nausea as well.

And she’s on her second pregnancy. And so I sort of lay out those examples because I love that for all of our journeys. Some of the things that we set out to do are just naturally easier for us. And some things that we set out to do are naturally harder for us. And I truly believe that you feel so much more satisfaction from the things that are hardest.

So when I think about building my business, I’m so proud of it, but it seems like the very obvious thing for me to have done once I stumbled upon entrepreneurship, I’m like, yes, of course I became a lawyer that was really hard for me. And now I’m going to build a business and it was just about as good as done as soon as I decided for dating, I had so much doubt that it would ever happen.

And so it was so much harder for me to shift my belief. And it was so much harder for me to have that transformation that I really appreciate it in a different sort of way than I do the business. And that’s not to say that things need to be hard for you to appreciate them. I just really want you to know that for whatever you’re going through, that’s hard for you.

Oftentimes that’s what makes us the strongest. Like I feel so solid in my marriage with Steve. I feel so confident in us and myself and him and I earned that. That was not my natural mindset. And so what I’m, what I’m realizing is that I had doubts about being able to get pregnant. I always knew I would be a mom somehow. Like, I didn’t know how I was open to all of the ways.

Like it didn’t have to be natural. I didn’t know just how it would happen. Right. Whether that was adoption or IVF or who knows natural. I just knew that eventually I would be a mom somehow. Okay. So there was sort of like a little bit of doubt. Like maybe it wouldn’t be just the traditional way and of course it was, and we got pregnant relatively quick. And so what’s interesting is that I, I spent a lot of time thinking about being able to get pregnant ahead of time.

I never once thought about being pregnant, not once, like literally never. I even remember thinking like, oh, well, I’ll worry about that when the time comes and, and thank goodness because it’s one of those things where I don’t know if I knew what I know now, if it would have been helpful. In fact, I think it wouldn’t have been because there would have been so much angst about it.

But it was best to just jump right in and be here sort of in the, the challenge of it. And I’m so I’m so grateful for this challenge. So it’s interesting is like feeling physically, like you got punched a whole bunch in the middle of the night and then waking up and just feeling like the aftermath of that all day and sort of wanting it. It’s fascinating. It’s like, of course I want the pain to go away, but I want to be pregnant.

And so it’s like that messy middle that I talk about with any sort of deep desire that you have, whether that’s a goal, like losing weight and you’re in the messy middle of, you know, trying to come up with your food plan or whether it’s the business or whether it’s, you know, something else. I don’t think it being hard is a good reason to give up on your desires.

I like to think that this was always going to be hard for me. I just didn’t know it. And that’s okay. And now what that means is I learn to become stronger. And my, my physical tolerance for pain is increased tenfold. And really what this episode is going to be about. I’m going to get to fill the mindset tips here in a second is about any time that you have a physical change.

So it really doesn’t have to be for mom to be mindset tips. Although I’m going to obviously be using that as the, as the main example here, but I coach a lot of women as well and Grow You who are going through diagnosis or some sort of physical change where their bodies have changed in a way that either they, you know, chosen wanted like pregnancy, or maybe it’s a diagnosis in a way that they didn’t choose or want, but it’s sort of like, okay, now what we have this thing going on with our bodies, what is the most useful mindset to have here?

It took a while for me to get here. And of course, it’s only been several months now, but it, it really, you feel like it’s been years. Cause you know, it’s, it’s 24/7. So I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about it. And I came up with several sources, mindset tips that are going to be helpful for you.

If you are experiencing a challenging pregnancy or you are going through a challenging time, physically in a different way, it doesn’t even have to be a diagnosis. It could be that you broke your leg and you have surgery, but the surgery is not for a few months. And so you’re sort of dealing with this physical change that really alters how you’re living in, like how best to think about that. So the first tip is to change your capacity. What this means is that instead of comparing yourself to your old 100%, you decide what your new 100% is.

So for example, with me being pregnant, my old 100%, you know, most recently was I’d get up at 6:00 AM. I would do my morning routine. I would work, I’d have lunch. I take the dogs out; I’d work some more. I would work out; I would have dinner with Steve. We’d take the dogs for a really long walk. Then we might do an evening routine. We might either read books separately or watch a movie together, or I might see a girlfriend, something like that. And then go to bed. I don’t know, between nine 30 and 11, somewhere in there, depending on the day or I’d go to a workout class or something like that. Right. So that was my very easy 100%. Okay. Now were there days where I did less than that and more than that and sort of for that totally, but for me was my capacity.

That was my 100%. Now, if I continue to hold that as my new standard or as my continued standard in this phase of life, I would be failing every single day. And so the mindset shift is, okay, I have this new thing, like I’m growing a human in my stomach. And so my capacity has changed. My career 100% is not what it used to be. And so it’s redefining that instead of saying, well, I’m just going to give it 40% or 50% every day. Which to me that doesn’t feel very good too. Me, I am giving a hundred percent every day and you know what, my 100% every day is I get up around 8:00 AM and I have some Cheerio’s and my medicine and some water and some crushed ice. And I stay in bed for about an hour and do, and sort of get some food in my system.

I might check a couple of emails on my phone, but really, I’m, I’m playing with the dogs on the bed and just sort of getting something on my stomach, seeing how I feel waking up pretty easily or easing into it, I should say, then around nine, I’m going to shower. And from nine to 10, I’m going to shower and I am going to get ready and getting ready, even looks different.

My 100% is sitting on the floor because I feel most comfortable sitting or laying down. So I sit on the floor and I do my hair or my makeup on the floor in the bathroom. Okay. And I might have a snack there as well. Currently eating a lot of dried food that I used to eat when I was about 10 years old. So we have Cheerios and pop tarts and anything like, you know, bananas and fruit that will, that will just go down and stay down basically.

So I get to work by 10:00 AM ish, sometimes 10 30 and I work till about noon. And then from noon to one, I take a break for lunch. I go on the couch; Steve makes me lunch. And I work from about one to five. I was taking a nap there in the middle of the day during the first trimester, but I don’t really seem to need that anymore.

So I’m adjusting my capacity again. And I find that if I stop work between five and six, I’m fine. And then I just go right back to the couch. I’m not doing a lot of exercising or walking right now. It’s pretty uncomfortable for me to do that. I feel extremely comfortable laying down or just releasing my stomach muscles. Like you don’t realize how much tightness you bring to, to standing. You have to hold up your stomach.

So when I sit and lay down, I feel better. So at the end of the day, I immediately go to the couch and sort of lay down and get a little snack. And we talk about dinner and that’s pretty much it like I’m on the couch for the rest of the night. And that is my capacity. I do not have guilt about that. I don’t think I should be going to the gym. I don’t think I should be more productive. I really settled into this being my new 100% capacity.

So I know when I’m like telling the truth to myself or when I’m lying to myself. So if I just stayed in bed all day and I didn’t work, I know that for me at my level of capacity, now that it would be sort of a lie to myself. Like I don’t need to be on bedrest.

I don’t need to be to totally, you know, laying down, not looking at a computer. I actually feel okay sitting. So you know, this tip is for you to decide what your new 100% is and it may change. So for me, in the first trimester I found like I really needed at least one nap every day. And I totally loved giving myself that nap. It was kind of fun to go from someone who’s so highly productive to someone who takes snaps and rests. And I didn’t feel any guilt about it because I really made it this intentional choice. And I think, you know, feeling how I felt my body sort of required that, but it would have been so much worse if I was comparing myself to my old capacity and saying, oh, well, you know, I’m only giving 50% because I’m not getting up at 6:00 AM.

Right. Well, whose capacity are we talking about here? Are we talking about your capacity, someone else’s capacity? You know, I hear crazy things all the time about people getting up at 3:00 AM and you all know, I used to get up at 4:00 AM. So if I was comparing myself now to that capacity, you know, I’d be operating at like 30%.

So it’s a total mindset shift. So if you, you are pregnant or you have anything else going on, physically decide what your new capacity is for or whatever it is you want to do, whether it’s work, whether it’s, you know, whatever you’re doing during the day, like, what’s your new capacity? When do you need to rest? When do you need breaks? I talked about this when I, I was studying for the bar and how going through law school, studying, taking and passing the bar, increased my capacity to sit down and work like without it being a problem.

So in my normal non-pregnancy life, I can sit down and work for like cut at least 12 hours, probably more than that, really, without a bunch of a problem. Like I need to use the restroom, get some water, have some snacks, but like, I’m not going crazy. My mind isn’t a problem like it, but it’s because I’ve increased that capacity so much.

So pay attention to where you’re at and increase your current capacity as you grow it. And then so as you change physically or at a stage of life or whatever it is, decrease it and do it consciously and say, okay, this is my new 100% and it will help you feel so much better about what you do. And don’t two in a day. The next tip I have for you is to make space for rest. Okay. So you might think that your capacity is a certain level and requires, you know, a break for lunch and, uh, uptime at 6:00 PM or something like that.

But consider if your capacity also intentionally rusting. So for me, I was actually able to produce at a higher rate and coach my clients and to show up for my Grow You calls only when I gave myself rest and naps ahead of these calls. And it was something that I figured out really early on. Like, I like the rest still, like, need a good night’s sleep and I need rest. A little rest at lunch and after work, but I don’t really need a lot of naps during the day anymore. But in the beginning, the first trimester, I really needed about a nap a day especially to be sort of on my, a game for coaching my clients. So really ask yourself and ask your body how much rest you need right now. And how can you get it and make that a huge priority.

Regardless of if you have little ones at home, if you have a business, if you have a job, you getting rest is the most important thing for me, it’s like, oh, I’m growing a human in my tummy. And yes, the girl next to me may not need any rest. And she may not even notice that she’s pregnant because her body’s reacting differently, but that’s like her business with her body. Like I can listen to my body, which is the next mindset tip to listen to your body.

So people are loving giving me lots of tips and advice, and it always comes from such a sweet place. And in the very beginning, it was extremely helpful to get all the like different nausea tips. I am 35. So I have a lot of women in my life with little ones. And I was seeking so many different tips and pieces of advice and I loved, loved, loved it.

And I would try these different things, but I would always listen to my body. So if I tried something and it didn’t feel right, I stopped it without question, here’s an example. So in the beginning I was doing a lot of ginger stuff, whether it was ginger ale, ginger chews, ginger tea, all the things ginger, right? Because ginger sort of known as being something that settles your stomach.

For whatever reason, I got to a point where ginger was one of the food aversions that I had and really became something that was just not appetizing at all to me and my body just said no more ginger. So I listened to my body just because ginger is supposed to help settle. Your stomach does not mean that it’s right for me at this time. So for you, are you listening to your body as like the number one authority and of course getting advice, particularly from professionals who are the most qualified and then from anyone else who you think might be helpful but giving priority to what your body is telling you.

Like when my body tells me I need to sit down or I need to excuse myself, then I do it. I can’t tell you how many calls I’ve been on in the last few months where I eat snacks. And prior to being pregnant, I would have never eaten a snack on a call. I don’t do it when I’m coaching my clients. But if I am on a call with my CFO or I’m on a call with someone who’s helping me with copywriting.

You know, anytime we’re, I’m the client basically, or, you know, I’m in an advanced coaching certification. Right now, I eat snacks on there. I would never have done this previously, but it helps me so much. It helps my body feel better and just stay a little bit more grounded. And so I do it right. It’s something that, that I’m not judging myself for.

And I really want to encourage you to do that as well. The next mindset tip is to be really curious about all of it versus being judgmental. I think this is the most helpful in the beginning. When you find out you broke your leg, or you got the diagnosis or you find out you’re pregnant and, and before you know it, one week later, you’re incredibly nauseous.

It can be easy to just jump to being judgmental, which usually shows up in feeling like frustrated, like, you know, kind of being mad that it’s happening. And I can’t say that I never go to this place. Usually this happens when I’m tired and God bless Steve, holy cow, he is so patient so loving and so tolerable. Like whenever I am getting into my judgmental frustrated self, it usually shows up like in the evening or, you know, if I’m having a particularly sick day and it’ll sound something like, you know, I’m just so frustrated.

I’m so over this, you know, this is horrible. And he just listens and lets me and sees if he can get me any different type of fruit or water or, you know, that crushed ice that I love to sort of chew on and having that support has been so helpful, but how I can even help myself. And I’ve been pretty good about it, except for those times where I, I basically have the thought, it shouldn’t be this way.

So if that’s at night or if it feels disproportionately worse than it has been for the last week or something like that, that’s when I sort of go into judgment, but you want to watch yourself because you make it so much worse. So there’s nausea. And then there’s the resistance of the nausea. So I can open up to the nausea and really like, I’m doing it now, like release my stomach.

And it really doesn’t feel as bad as it can be. Particularly if I am mad about it or frustrated about it or sort of judging it, or, you know, what that does is it adds resistance to the nausea. So then there’s the nausea. And then there’s like the tightness and the resistance to it. So whatever it is for you, like, see if you can really be curious about it, like where is it in your body? And just notice what it feels like and really open up to it.

And you’ll actually end up feeling better, even though it won’t totally be gone. It will like to flow a little bit more in your body versus like the tightness that you might feel if you’re in judgment. And again, that’s not to beat yourself up. I already told you, I am not perfect at this, but I noticed that it’s so much more manageable and tolerable and fine.

If I am curious and open and really prioritize what I need. So I’ll give you an example, you know, we’ll go on a walk on the weekends too, at a dog park. Steve will be like, I need to get out of this place because pretty much I live either in my bed, in my office or on my couch, because I just can’t do that much right now. I get so tired. Or nauseous.

So we went to this area that we love and we took the dogs on this walk and we normally do this sort of loop. And we got like a third of the way through. And I was like, I can’t go anymore. It’s like, you can’t go around the loop. I was like, no, I can’t. And it, it was a moment where normally, you know, no matter what’s going on in my life, if I had cramps or I had a bad day, like I’m going to finish the loop.

Like my body is generally very capable. I’m going to, I’m going to do the thing I set out to do, but this is so different because of the physical discomfort. And so I really have to prioritize what my body needs and knowing the difference is so important and you know, the difference for yourself and it’s honoring that. So for me, I said, you know, I can go to the stop sign and we got to go like back to the car. I can’t go all the way around. I need to like, sit down, I’m getting out of breath, I’m getting more nauseous and more tired and honoring myself in that way.

And of course, Steve is amazing and perfect. And we did that and, and that was all fine, but I know it can be really tempting to either go into judgment and be mad at ourselves or try and hide it and push through.

And I think sometimes the strongest and most important thing we can do is listen to our bodies, be really honoring to it, like honor what your body needs. Like, I didn’t know it was going to be this way. Not know, but here we are. And I’m really allowing that and honoring it and just being in it. And it feels messy and hard and challenging. And I don’t like it. And I’m also so incredibly grateful that I’m going through it.

So the last mindset tip that I have for you is to join a really supportive community. So this might look like joining Grow You where you have someone who is leading you, right? Like me, who has the mindset tools that I can help you with. Here’s why joining something like some sort of support group or Grow You or something where there’s a leader is really important.

So I joined this app for mom friends, and I did it to sort of meet other women who were also new to the area and pregnant, and I love the app for that purpose. Okay. So it’s like amazing to meet other women kind of going through what you’re going through. But the app also has this feature where they have forums and the forums are not monitored. There’s no leader. And my mind was a mess after sort of scrolling through what was in those forums, because there isn’t a coach. There isn’t someone who can help. And I sort of give this example because you’ll know the difference in how you feel.

 So if you join something like Grow You and you get to look at your mind and you’re learning all these tools, you’re going to feel better contrast that with, if you go and binge on social media or you join this community that you think is going to be supportive, but actually you get off of it and realize how terrible you feel.

That’s a cue that that is not the supportive community. And I think that there are so many different ways to connect, to get help, to have a community that you just want to make sure that for you, it is actually supportive. It’s not something that’s going to sort of feed into your fears, your doubts, that any sort of scarcity thinking, anything like that. That’s why I’m so passionate about Grow You and about having like a personal development community, where you can get the sort of support and help that you want.

All right. My friends, shout out to all the moms to be listening to this. I love you. And I am sending you so much love and support on your journeys to

Create the next generation. We’ll talk soon.

If you loved this podcast, you’re going to love Grow You. Grow You is my virtual life coaching program, where I take everything on the podcast to the next level. I invite you to join our amazing community of women and moms and deepen your own personal development head on over to to learn more.

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