How Your Home Life Affects Menopause

How Your Home Life Affects Menopause

menopause perimenopause stress housework second shift mental load

 

Years ago, when my husband and I were expecting our first child (who is now a high school freshman), we decided that I would be the primary parent.

Let me be clear: there was absolutely nothing pejorative about this term.

We were living abroad, and I didn’t have a work permit. I also really wanted to nurse my baby and be his primary caregiver. At the time, it was a lovely life, and our family of three was quite content.

Fast forward to 2018. We now have three kids: one in high school, one in middle school, and one in elementary school. Both my husband and I own our own businesses. I am still the primary parent.

It’s a familiar tale, right?

Studies show that women do three times the housework that men do. That’s a visible inequity of labor.

This set up is known as “The Second Shift” , a nod to the fact that even though women are in the paid workforce at higher-than-ever rates, the bulk of childcare and domestic duties are still theirs.

But that’s not all…

There are also all of the less visible tasks that also usually fall to women.

Birthday parties. Registration dates for piano lessons and ice skating classes. Dentist appointments. Annual well checks. PTA lunches for teachers. Which friend is currently persona non grata.

Once we understand the mental load that women carry, it’s much easier to understand how exhausting it all can be.

 

Let’s face it: we all have a certain amount of bandwidth. And if my bandwidth is being taken up by the minutiae of logistics for three other people—plus family functions—that’s a lot of bandwidth!

Many husbands are certainly participatory in kids’ lives in a way that men weren’t a generation ago. Both dads and kids benefit from the active fatherly presence in the kids’ lives.

But for women who are juggling work, raising children, aging parents, and managing the symptoms of perimenopause, the mental load can be crushing.

It is futile to try to address the stress that exacerbates the unpleasant symptoms of menopause without acknowledging the mental load. When we learn strategies to decrease the mental load, we can begin to develop systems of meaningful self-care. One such strategy is educating ourselves about the realities of perimenopause and the role stress plays in how we weather the storm.

Survive & THRIVE Perimenopause is a six-week ecourse that includes educational information about the physiology of hormones and bodily changes that happen between ages 40 and 55. Furthermore, we take a deep dive into the psychology of why women feel the burden of the mental load at this time. Finally, Survive & THRIVE Perimenopause offers you the opportunity to create a road map to a happier, healthier, more balanced life.

Not sure if you’re in perimenopause? Check out this video….

Did you know that the "second shift" work of chores & childcare contributes to menopause symptoms?

Am I in Perimenopause?

Am I in Perimenopause?

am i in perimenopause

Am I in perimenopause?

Why is my body doing this to me?

Will I ever feel like myself again?

If you’ve ever asked any of those three questions, you’re not alone. For women 40+, not knowing what is normal and what isn’t **is** normal!

But if you’re not happy living in the dark, it’s time to educate yourself about what perimenopause is. It’s good to know what you can expect. It’s empowering to know what questions you should ask your health care provider– and what to do if the answer doesn’t seem right to you. And it’s a great relief to know that there is a new normal on the other side.

Not only that, but there is opportunity and a new sense of balance.

So don’t be afraid of perimenopause. Be informed!

If you’ve ever asked “Am I in Perimenopause?” check out the video below. It will help you answer that question– and a lot of other questions, too. And I truly hope it will put your mind and heart at ease.

Good health and great happiness to you!

 

So, did that sound like you?

If you’re sick and tired of being sick and tired– or you’re just ready to be better informed about your body– NOW is the time.

Join the community of women who are ready to become informed citizens of their own bodies. These are women just like you who have a million competing priorities.

But they are ready to say YES to better hormone balance, increased energy, bolstered moods, and a body that feels fit and at ease.

 

I invite you to check out Survive & THRIVE Perimenopause to see all that is on offer:

Educational videos— each short enough to watch in those precious spare moments of your day

A Specially-Designed Workbook— take the information from the course and, with thoughtful self-reflection, actually apply it to your life

Community— like-minded, action-taking, intelligent women

Weekly Q&A Zoom Sessions— ask **YOUR** questions & get answers from a certified women’s wellness coach who specializes in perimenopause, share your insights, know that you aren’t going at it alone

And SO MUCH MORE!

Brain fog? Weight gain? Body gone all wonky? Check out this 15 minute video about what perimenopause is-- and isn't!

Complimentary Coaching for Small Business Saturday 2017

Complimentary Coaching for Small Business Saturday 2017

It’s the end of Thanksgiving week here in the US, and I have so much for which I am grateful.  I have a loving husband and three quirky kids, good health, and the freedom to craft a life I truly enjoy.

I never intended to own a small business. But when your passion intersects with the reality of your life, amazing things can happen. And as life changes, my business has adapted. I’m amazed and thrilled to be on the cusp of ten years of coaching women to lead more fit, healthy, and whole lives.

In the spirit of Small Business Saturday, I am offering a pre-sale of the next session of my Survive & THRIVE Perimenopause course which kicks off  January 15th .

 

(Yes, I know that’s a long time to wait…but you and I both know that you’re not going to have the time or energy to devote to yourself between now and then anyway.)

Besides, you already know how January is going to go….

You’re going to resolve to take better care of yourself. Get more exercise. Eat more nutritious food. Actually go to sleep on time. But somewhere along the way, you’ll get derailed.

Survive & THRIVE can help you make those resolutions a reality. Even better, it can also help you finally figure out how to balance your hormones, shed the belly fat, build your bones, and get more restful sleep.

And if you can truly understand how doing those things really makes a difference to your body, you might find yourself better at sticking to them.

I know, too, that a little accountability through one-on-one support is a rocket-launcher to making real, meaningful, and sustainable changes.

So here’s the deal:

As a BONUS for registering now, you’ll receive a COMPLIMENTARY 30-minute one-on-one coaching call during the Survive & THRIVE session. {VALUE $50}

But it’s not just a call…There are pre-call questions you’ll answer so we’re both prepared to laser in on what you’re biggest wellness issues are. That means we can laser focus our time together on what will move you forward most productively.

So take yourself and your resolutions seriously, and register for Survive & THRIVE—and your BONUS Coaching Call—today. This offer is valid only through Monday, November 27th. (That’s Small Business Saturday through Cyber Monday 2017.)

Thank you for being a part of my small business as you help me fulfill my mission to support Well Balanced Women.

Creativity as Self-Care: A Prescription for Fun

Creativity as Self-Care: A Prescription for Fun

Does your day-to-day life make you feel like you’re stuck in a rut? Do you have the desire to try something different but don’t want to change your whole life? Maybe a creativity infusion is what you need!

Think of creativity as self-care.

It has benefits that are good for brain health, body health, and it’s just plain fun! And who doesn’t need more stress-busting, brain-boosting activity?

Increasing the amount of creative activity in your life often involves some creative thinking. Real factors like time and money are often what keep people from exercising their creative muscles.

But with a little self-assessment and a bit of planning, you can get your creative on like crazy!

Getting started with creativity as self-care

How much time do you have? How much money can you invest in your creative endeavors? What roadblocks are in your way?

Understanding what your limitations are from the start is important. It lets you know that you’ll be able to keep up with whatever creative endeavor you undertake. And it will keep it from being disappointed, too.

As for WHAT creative endeavor to try, start with thinking about things you liked to do as a child. Maybe you could always be found with a pile of colored pencils around, drawing your world as you saw it. Or perhaps you were known as a fantastic storyteller, weaving tales to entertain friends and family. Or maybe you were the girl who loved pretend play.

(I was the latter. My whole childhood was made up of me being the teacher and my friends, brother, or stuffed animals being my students. Sometimes creativity and reality are tightly intertwined!)

You can also explore creative outlets that you wanted to do as a child but never could. Perhaps you dreamed of learning a musical instrument or taking dance lessons, but your family couldn’t afford it. Of maybe you grew up in a home that didn’t tolerate mess making. If you’re idea of getting creative involves lots of materials and a messy process, enjoy being in charge of your fate now!

How creativity bolsters brain power

Especially for women in perimenopause and beyond, engaging in creative activities fires up the brain centers to keep memory fog at bay. For most people, undertaking creative action– whether its writing or knitting or dancing– uses parts of the brain you don’t use in the rest of your daily life.By learning new things and asking your brain to work in unusual-to-you ways, you’re exercising your brain. Laying down new neural pathways is excellent preventative healthcare for your brain.

Creativity also reduces your stress levels. Lower stress has a cascade of positive benefits. For the brain, lower stress means less risk of dementia. For the body, lower stress means less risk of high blood pressure, weight gain, and heart disease.

Creativity as self-care is a can’t-lose experience!

Self Care Creativity
Survive & Thrive Perimenopause ONLINE is Here!

Survive & Thrive Perimenopause ONLINE is Here!

Are you a woman over 40 who is searching for answers to why you’re feeling like you’re feeling and wanting to know what you can do about it?

If you’re in the thick of perimenopause, with all of the hormone ebbs and flows, and you’re ready for a life raft, I’ve got it.

(If you’re not sure if you’re in perimenopause, the course helps you look for signs, too!)

Survive & Thrive Perimenopause ONLINE is a women’s wellness workshop in ecourse format. The ecourse teaches you what’s going on with your body and offers strategies for better wellness.

We’ll discuss how to find the root cause of your symptoms so you can feel more like yourself again, how to nourish your body feel satisfied, and designing a life that works WITH your body rather than against it.

The online workshop is six-weeks of education and coaching about all aspects of being a woman over 40. We’ll cover:

  • How to know when you’re in perimenopause or menopause
  • Seeking out root issues of hormone imbalances
  • Bone health and aging
  • Pelvic health (and what it really means)
  • Fitness over 40 to rev your metabolism and build lean muscle
  • Quality nutrition that is easy and delicious
  • Self-care as it relates to your overall wellness
  • Building a healthcare team who will support and guide you

At the end of Survive & Thrive Perimenopause ONLINE, you’ll have a clear roadmap for the happy, healthy, well-balanced life you crave.

I’ve been offering this type of coaching in a live setting for more than a year now, and it fires me up to know how much women just like you have gotten out of it. As trite as it sounds, knowledge is power!

(And, hey, if you’re already post-menopausal, there is still tons of content in Survive & THRIVE Perimenopause ONLINE that will help you make the most of your golden Third Age of life!)

 

Perimenopause symptoms and relief online workshop.
The Incontinence Myth

The Incontinence Myth

 

Picture a group of women sitting around a table, drinking wine or coffee, chatting and laughing.  One women gasps and says, “Oops!  I think I just peed myself a bit!”  Her friends chime in, one by one, and say, “Oh, that happens to me, too, when I (choose one) laugh/run/cough/sneeze.”

The Incontinence Myth

While stress incontinence is rather common, it is not normal.  The incontinence myth perpetuates due to ignorance– we believe stress incontinence is an inescapable side effect of pregnancy or menopause.  This just is not true.  It is not simply part of being a woman that we have to deal with and move on.

Not surprisingly, the manufacturers of feminine hygiene products have found a new market thanks to the incontinence myth.  Their products and advertising approach the issue, normalize it, and offer what seems to be a solution.  It is, however, merely addressing the symptom of leaking.  While these products certainly give women a way to hide their incontinence and carry on with their lives, they do nothing to fix the problem.

Unbelievably, there is a whole market of women’s t-shirts, mugs, and greeting cards to capitalize on the incontinence myth. (Don’t believe me?  Check out etsy.) These products want women to buy in to the belief that stress incontinence is normal, permanent, and somehow something we should find funny.  While I applaud the designers of the items for their creativity, I find it a misguided empowerment technique.  Sure, own your problem.  But why would you want to tell the world about it rather than fix it?

Who can help with stress incontinence?

Pelvic physical therapists have special training and are the top choice for severe stress incontinence cases.  Their education about internal anatomy and their access to the best biofeedback tools and devices will laser in on the root cause of your issues.

In severe cases of incontinence, surgery may be required.  A good pelvic physical therapist will do everything to help you avoid surgery.  Your best chances of not requiring surgery– which has fairly low success rates in terms of patient satisfaction– is to do the exercises your pelvic PT sets out for you.

Your body will not heal itself!  To break free of the incontinence myth requires your active and dedicated participation.  I freely admit these exercises are not exciting, and no one but you (and perhaps your partner) will ever notice the results of your work.  But aren’t you worth it?

If your stress incontinence issues are not severe, you might be a good candidate to work with a personal trainer who is highly educated (and certified) to work with women with stress incontinence.  A perinatal personal trainer has the training to know which exercises to avoid, as many common exercises exacerbate stress incontinence.  Moreover, a perinatal personal trainer will develop a modified and progressive workout series to help train your muscles to work together again.

While stress incontinence develops due to pelvic floor pressure and weakened abdominal integrity (as in pregnancy) or decreased pelvic floor tension (due to lowering estrogen in menopause), it does not have to be permanent.  Seek out the help you need to break free of the incontinence myth and live a leak-free life!

 

 

The truth about Incontinence.