Mum confidence

Overwhelmed or uncertain? Try these easy ways to return to the top of your game.

Along with a good night's sleep, many new mothers also wave goodbye to that confident self who, pre-baby, could run to work in wedges, pitch an idea to her boss then whip up a 3-course dinner for friends. It's not unusual to feel insecure when you're still trying to find your feet. Here are 5 ways to revive some elements of yourself that have been lacking.

1. Rediscover self-esteem

Often a woman's self-esteem is bolstered by her work and suddenly she's with a new baby and out of her comfort zone. Ask yourself, "What gave me my sense of self? Was it being successful at a certain thing?" Then try to reintroduce those elements into your life. So, if you enjoyed a creative career, you could join an evening art class or book club.

2. Have an adult conversation

It can feel like you'll have nothing to talk to other people about besides nappies and babies. But that first adult conversation is an important step to take. If you find yourself over-sharing tales of life with a newborn, never forget the power of asking questions. You'll encourage people to open up and interesting conversation should follow.

3. Talk about sex

It's important to have an honest conversation with your partner even before the baby is born positively reinforcing your physical affection. After that, discuss your self life and accept it might be on hold for a while. Take the emphasis off penetrative sex and discuss what else you might try. It might be just a cuddle. But whatever happens, be honest, be loving and share the experience.

4. Eat positively

It's crucial your diet includes plenty of good oils: salmon, avocado, flaxseeds, nuts, olive oil. Keep blood sugar stable by not reaching for sweet stuff, and stick to a low-GI diet with wholemeal pasta and bread instead of white. Have protein with every meal, a regular intake of beans and pulses and lots of vegetables. It'll get you in the habit of instilling a healthy attitude in your children, too.

5. Work smarter

Many new mums want to prove their performance will not be impeded by having a child, so they go into over-compensating mode. When you return to work, be open about your expectations. Use this as an opportunity to look at ways to work smarter, not harder. Make it clear you'll be leaving on time and plant the idea that productive working means you can do this.