Hello, self-care.

By Kate Naranjo 3/25/2020

When everything around us seems uncertain, we at Bird & Bee are certain self-care has never mattered more. We know, we know. The buzz word gets a lot of hype, but what does self-care really mean? And more importantly what are some strategies to create or add to a self-care routine that actually make you feel your best? What about if you’re trying to conceive or already pregnant?

Glad you asked! We compiled a quick list of strategies we love that help us feel our best no matter what stage of life we’re in, but especially surrounding pregnancy. The list is certainly not all encompassing, but we feel it is a nice holistic place to start. We honor the fact that self-care is entirely unique to the individual - hence the whole “self” part of self-care. You get to determine what strategies feel authentic to you & contribute to your overall sense of wellbeing. Take what you like, leave what you don’t & reach out on instagram or email if you have any questions. We love talking about self-care!

This list is not medical advice nor should it be construed as such. We always encourage you to check in with your doctor before making any changes to your health & care routine.

Self-care strategies for feeling your best
For all stages of life, especially those surrounding pregnancy

1. Eat foods that nourish you, keep your blood sugar balanced & incorporate a variety of nutrients throughout your meals & snacks. Supplement with a high quality prenatal vitamin (4-6 months preconception and then throughout pregnancy & breastfeeding). When possible, shoot for an option with methylated folate versus folic acid to support the body’s efficient use of this key nutrient.

2. Get outside go for a walk. This form of movement is not only good for our bodies, but also our minds. Win-win!

3. Try to get 8 hours of sleep a night. To optimize sleep quality try eliminating night lighting (we <3 you, blackout curtains), screen time before bedtime & keep the bedroom cool in temperature.

4. Experiment with adding in meditation, breath work and/or yoga. Find a practice that allows a few moments of stillness everyday to clear the mind and fortify the body’s ability to be resilient & handle the stresses of day-to-day life.

5. Minimize the exposure to chemicals in personal care products & home cleaning products. This is a great “get the house baby-ready” activity! Create a personal care routine with clean products that you can feel good about & have a mini-spa day at home. We love the Environmental Working Group’s app Think Dirty for checking which products are cleanest to use.

6. For those trying to conceive, consider downloading a cycle tracking app, like Kindara or using a paper journal to track your basal body temperature (BBT) and cervical fluid. This method takes the mystery & stress out of which day(s) in the month is best to try and conceive. This method of tracking, called Fertility Awareness Method (FAM), is most successful when taught by a FAM educator, but can also be self-learned from books like ‘Taking Charge of Your Fertility’ by Toni Weschler.

7. Lean on your support system. Identify the relationships that fill you up and prioritize spending time with those people. (We think it is important to note that in these unprecedented times, spending time with loved ones will look different. Get creative & have coffee dates over FaceTime or host a virtual book club to get friends together - just a few options we have loved.)

Bird & Bee’s self-care wheel below is a great representation of how self-care revolves around what makes YOU feel your best. Big thank you to our lovely artist & friend, @lizzkelley for illustrating how we work with our clients in establishing self-care routines for their various health goals. Caring for ourselves has truly never been more important. Sending you an abundance of light & health along your journey.

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Kate Naranjo

Kate founded Bird & Bee after observing the gap in the healthcare system during certain phases of women’s lives. Bird & Bee was born to fill those gaps and replace confusion and frustration with education and empowerment.