Tag Archives: fertility

Toxins, Preparing for Conception, and Simplicity

Do you know what's in your products

It’s really all about simplicity. When I interviewed Dr. Laurel Standley for the Creating Fertile Ground Conference, she shared that even as a scientist, she doesn’t know what all of the ingredients in our products are. After all, there are over 6000!

So what are we supposed to do?

Memorize lists of ever-changing chemicals to be concerned with? I tried that; it’s not so easy.

Ignore the issue and hope for the best? The stakes seem too high for that, as we’re talking about not just our health, but also the health of generations to come.

As I’ve learned more and more over the years,  especially when it comes to toxins and the childbearing years, I’ve come to discover a way to do the best you can without getting yourself overwhelmed by tons of information – keep it simple.

I recently had an in person session with a client. She and her husband are planning to start trying to conceive soon, and she is thinking about what’s in her products in an entirely new way now that she’s thinking about her future baby. It was a deep dive into this topic, and after our time together she said, “Thanks again! It was all really helpful and encouraging.” Encouraging. That’s key. You can gather all the information you want online, and you’ll likely find some of it to be helpful and much of it to be scary. That’s not really my idea of helpful, simple, or empowering at all.

Here’s what I taught her about simplicity when it comes to the products we’re using on a daily basis:

Use fewer products. On average, women use a dozen products daily. How many do you use? Often, many of them are ancillary to our needs, and they come at a huge price. One thing that my client realized was that she was seeing the same ingredients again and again as she checked her labels. Not only are we exposing ourselves to these chemicals, but we’re getting exposed multiple times by our products. How can you use fewer products in your routine?

Keep the ingredients list short and readable. One exercise that I have my clients do is you write out all of the ingredients that are in their products. For each one, they make two columns – the ingredients that they recognize and know what purpose they serve and the ingredients that they don’t recognize. The same reaction comes up again and again – so many of the ingredients are difficult to spell, let alone understand. Looking for products that have simple ingredients (ideally 10 or fewer ingredients and that you can recognize) is a great way to release the fear and overwhelm about your products. Check your labels. Do you know what you’re putting in and on your body?

Don’t feel like you need to do all the research on your own. We are surrounded by so much information these days, much of it full of unnecessary fear, much of it contradictory, and it can easily be overwhelming and confusing. Getting lost in a sea of information is not my idea of simplicity. Is it yours? If not, choose simplicity by starting where you can and finding support from those who have a passion for digging for the information and sharing just what you need to make this journey an empowering one. How can you reach out to get support so you can find more simplicity?

I’d love to know what was most helpful and how you plan to bring more simplicity to your daily routine. Join the conversation by sharing in the comments below.

Peace, Love, and Wellness,

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What the Process of Growing a Business Has Taught Me about Preparing to Grow a Baby

Creating Fertile Ground Circle brandedWhen I started Womb to World Wellness in 2011, I already knew the feeling of desire very well, as I had experienced it through the desire for a baby. I learned a lot along that journey, but sometimes we need to learn lessons more than once before we can fully begin to integrate them into our lives. As I open the Creating Fertile Ground Circle, some of that vulnerability comes back for me, and I wanted to share that with you today.

This is not the first time I have launched a group program. I have now run a few successful programs (my favorite until now being Growing with Gratitude), but back in 2012 I tried for the first time, and what felt then like failure left me feeling raw and unsure of myself.

I had just run I Want One (or another one) for the first time, and it was amazing. More women than I had expected joined me for that week of gentle emails, welcoming them to see what this journey could be like. I was excited at the idea of having some of them join me as we dove deeper into that content, exploring and beginning to flesh out how they could start creating these changes with ease. So I opened registration, spread the word, and waited. Crickets. Nothing. Nada. And as quickly as my excitement had risen, it deflated.

I questioned myself, I questioned the work I was doing, I questioned my business, and I looked for new paths to travel. I ran a couple of programs geared towards mamas instead of those dreaming about becoming mamas, and while they were well received, they didn’t light me up like this preconception work does.

As I just shared with my mastermind group, “we drive ourselves crazy with expectations.” This is true whether our expectations are about our businesses, our future babies, or simply our daily lives.

Everything shifted for me when I surrendered, released the expectations and let myself be guided by my passion.

Surrender means to cease resistance. Do you often find yourself fighting, struggling, and working what feels like too hard to reach your dream? That is the resistance, and I can promise you that most of the time it will keep you stuck. When you surrender to what is, you gain a clearer vision of what is possible, what needs to happen to get you unstuck and moving with flow towards your dream.

Releasing expectations means to open up and let go. Let go for a moment of what you expect this journey to look like. Let go for a moment of what others expect of you. Open up to understanding that your path is unfolding as it is for some reason. It might suck. It might hurt like hell. It might make you question what you’re doing right or wrong. And I’m sorry if you’re feeling that – I know those feelings too.  It is about trust.

Being guided by your passion means focusing your energy on what makes you thrive. When you create the space to fill your life with what lights you up, what brings you joy, and what brings you happiness, you create an energy about you that attracts what you most desire, because you are in flow.

It was awful when I put myself out there 2 years ago and heard crickets, but you know what? I wasn’t ready like I am now.

I wasn’t ready like I am now to hold space for those women.

I wasn’t ready like I am now to run a program that feels completely in flow.

I wasn’t ready like I am now to surrender to the process.

I wasn’t ready like I am now to release the expectations and enjoy the journey.

I wasn’t really like I am now to trust in my passion and let it guide me.

I just spent a day at a mini-retreat, creating much of the content for the Creating Fertile Ground Circle, and let me tell you, it’s nothing like I could have created two years ago. And I’m so excited that you’re here with me now to have the chance to experience it.

I know now that the women who are meant to Circle together in this group will be drawn to it and know that it is what is the right next step for them. If you are one of them, I look forward to connecting with you more deeply soon! You can learn more and join us here.

Peace, Love, and Wellness,

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What Can You Do to Create Fertility for Your Future Self?

In this week’s video I answer an important question – what can you do now if you’re thinking about having a baby in 5-7 years.

Check it out and be sure to join the conversation when you’re done!

If you’re ready to get started on your journey to motherhood, you can join us here!

Peace, Love, and Wellness,

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What To Do When Your Fertile Energy is Feeling Stuck

I am so excited to be bringing a new feature to this space!

Sometimes I get questions from women that I know they are not alone in wondering about, and I thought it would be a wonderful idea to share some of those questions and answers with you.

If you’ve got a question that you’d like to hear me answer, whether it’s about your own journey or you’d like to know more about my journey, please send an email to xandra at wombtoworldwellness dot com with the subject line I’ve got a question for you, and you might see it featured here!

Please join the conversation by leaving a comment below after you watch today’s video.

Peace, Love, and Wellness,

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Why Toxins are Key to Healthy Conception and Pregnancy


toxins and fertility

Peace lilies are great for cleaning toxins out of the air. Note: Toxic to cats.

There is a balance of energy in our bodies – that which creates life and that which impedes it. At the beginning of my journey to prepare myself for my future baby, I recognized the importance of focusing on the energy that creates life but I saw that I needed to clear out the negative energy, the clutter, and the toxins before I could create a sacred and luscious space where my child could grow.

Toxins can be a scary and overwhelming topic, but the risks that we open ourselves to unnecessarily on a daily basis are far scarier and more overwhelming. In fact, when we can be in service of our best health, and therefore our baby’s best health, the topic of toxins becomes one of empowerment. You learn what you can begin to control and in doing so you let go of so much fear.

So many of our fears – infertility, miscarriage, pregnancy and birth complications, birth defects and health related issues as our child grows up – are often deeply connected to the toxicity that has found its way into our bodies. By taking the steps towards learning about the connections between toxins and your health, you see what steps are in your control to reducing the risks of so many of your fears.

And it’s easy. That’s right, I’m starting off the week of the Creating Fertile Ground Virtual Conference with the easy first step. That’s not to say that it’s easy to eliminate all toxins from your life – that’s impossible. It’s easy to begin to take the steps that fit into your lifestyle and that fit into the vision of the world that you want to see flourish for your family.

In many cases, a few simple changes to the products you use can significantly reduce your toxic burden. In some cases, the changes are not practical right now, but there are actions you can take to mitigate the impact. In all cases, you step into a place of empowerment.

This is something that you can do right away, to treat yourself as sacred ground as you begin to prepare for baby. You want to reduce your exposure now so the environment you grow your baby in, from the very moment of conception, is comprised of as much energy that creates and nourishes life as possible. You can do this by reducing the negative toxic energy, both physically and mentally.

The women who will be sharing with you are going to teach you what you can be doing now and why it’s important, but you also might hear suggestions that feel like too much to implement right now, and that’s okay. You’ve empowered yourself with knowledge and you can put it into practice whenever you feel ready.

Clearing out the toxins is a beautiful foundation on which to grow everything that comes next. In order for plants to grow and thrive, they much have fertile and nontoxic soil. That is where it all begins.

If you’re ready to learn more about what you need to know and what you can do about toxins and your fertile health, join us for the Creating Fertile Ground Virtual Conference by registering here.

Peace, Love, and Wellness,

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Why Now is the Time to Create Fertile Ground

create fertile ground right nowWhen we are struggling to conceive, we show up in fear and we talk about it.

When we take that test and discover that there is a being growing inside of us, we wonder what we ‘should’ be doing or what we ‘should’ have been doing, and we talk about it.

When we feel the desire growing so strongly in us for this role of mama, but we’re paralyzed by whens and ifs and all of the potential fears, we keep it inside.

It’s time for this to change.

We, as women, have a power deep inside. I like to call it mama spirit and I believe it is never too early (or too late!) to begin nurturing and nourishing this part of ourselves.

She is our essence, full of creative capacity, and until we take divine care of her, she’s not at her best and strongest self.

This conference, this gathering of women, is just a small part of a much larger vision. It is a way to start the dialogue, to let women know that it is amazing to have this desire to be a mama and to show them how they can step into this role right now.

It is not enough to go to your doctor and say, “We’re thinking about start a family, what should we do?”

It is not enough to secretly harbor this desire as you take steps to grow your mama spirit (I did this, and I deeply felt that lack of much needed support and community).

It is not enough to say “this is a future dream, so I’ll just shut down this desire for now.”

I want you to fully awaken your desires.

I want you to begin taking steps on this beautiful journey right now.

I want you to feel empowerment and authenticity radiate through you.

I want all of this in service to your and to your future baby.

In the years that I’ve been growing my practice, I’ve heard two main things:
– Women before they conceive? That is a hard group to find!
– And from mamas, I wish I’d know about you when…

So here I am, calling you forth. Step into this dream now, claim it as yours. Know that this conference is a gift straight from my heart to you.

We can’t wait for others to call the shots, to tell us what we need to know and do. We need to find what we are searching for and dive in, heart first.

If the idea of your future baby is in your heart and on your mind, welcome to the path that will help guide you to your little one.

Ready to take that next step? We’re waiting for you here.

Next week, I’ll be sharing with you why the five topics that we’ll be covering are, to me, the foundational pieces of this journey.

Peace, Love, and Wellness,

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Yes, I’m Still Talking about Toxins and Fertility!

preparing for pregnancyI’m reading a book right now, in fact I’m plowing through it because the topic is one I’m so passionate about, and it’s making me think of one of the final points in the recent opinion paper put out by ACOG on reproductive health and fertility. The authors of the paper wrote, “When an activity raises threats of harm to human health or the environment, precautionary measures should be taken even if some cause and effect relationships are not fully established scientifically.”

In the book I’m reading, Generations at Risk, they talk about how the scientific method works (stuff I hadn’t read about since high school), and why it can be flawed when we’re making public health policy choices based on scientific studies.

Here’s the bottom line. If you can make some simple changes that have the potential to greatly improve the health of you and your family there’s no reason not to! Tweet This!

I’ve been working with women to create these types of changes for a long time, and as you know if you’ve followed me for a while and ready my story, this is where I started on my own journey because it was the easiest place to begin.

You know all of those exciting ideas I mentioned? Well a couple of them involve helping you tackle the toxins with fun and ease. One of them is a big project that you’ll hear more about in the coming months, but there’s something else that I’m going to share with you next week, so stayed tuned!

In the meantime, I’d love to know where you feel most stuck or confused when it comes to toxins in your life. Just leave a comment below!

Peace, Love, and Wellness,

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Effects of Toxins on Reproductive Health

toxin reducing plantsThere are a lot of anxious and overwhelmed pregnant and thinking-about-being-pregnant women out there right now, and I don’t want you to be one of them. If you’ve heard the recent news about the opinion paper written by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, I want you to know that I’ve got your back. This is exactly what I’m here to support you with. So take a deep breath and give yourself a few minutes to read what I have to share with you.

“Robust scientific evidence has emerged over the past 15 years, demonstrating that preconception and prenatal exposure to toxic environmental agents can have a profound and lasting effect on reproductive health across the life course.”

This was the opening sentence in the ACOG Committee Opinion NO. 575 and a concept that I am very familiar with. The fact that the evidence has been growing is a positive, because it highlights another area where you have power and control over your health and the health of your family. From the time before you conceive your baby, you can create change that will impact your health and your future baby’s health for the rest of your lives – and that may even impact your grandchildren’s health (I wrote more about that here).

Some of the key points that are important for you to know and that I want to talk to you about a bit more:

“An analysis of National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey data from 2003-2004 found that virtually every pregnant woman in the United States is exposed to at least 43 different chemicals.”

Women use an average of 12 personal care products every day, and most of them contain numerous chemicals, many of them toxic. We turn the hot water on, open our pores, and welcome these toxins into our bodies. A study conducted by the Environmental Working Group in 2004 discovered that babies still in utero are exposed to almost 300 different chemicals before they are even born!

This is important but doesn’t need to feel hopeless. Many of the chemicals can be avoided by swapping out what you’re currently using for healthier products and by learning a few key tips that will protect your family’s health for generations to come.

“Prenatal exposure to environmental chemicals is linked to various adverse health consequences, and patient exposure at any point in time can lead to harmful reproductive health outcomes.”

 The last few decades have seen a significant spike in incidences of birth defects, autism, infertility, cancer and more. In some cases, these have been linked to the chemicals in our products. I’m not suggesting that reducing your toxic exposure can completely reduce your risk of these occurrences to zero, but it will help you know that you are doing all that is within your control, and that’s huge. I wrote more about this over on mom-blog just last week. Taking action as soon as you can (whether this is before you conceive or during pregnancy) can help you and your family stay as healthy as possible.

“Patient-centered actions can reduce body burdens of toxic chemicals (ie: the total amount of chemicals present in the human body at any one time).”

This is so important! This is all about what you can do, and it’s true – there is so much that’s in your control, and that’s what I’m here to help support you with. It’s easy to become easily overwhelmed but when you have someone to take your hand and guide you through what steps you can take to systematically reduce your body burden, it becomes empowering and fun. Knowing what actions you can take and getting the support you need to make them happen is an incredible gift that you can give yourself and your family.

“When an activity raises threats of harm to human health or the environment, precautionary measures should be taken even if some cause and effect relationships are not fully established scientifically.”

We don’t need to wait until all of the evidence is in, because we’ll be waiting for a long time and by then it will be too late. When the EWG tested blood samples of the babies in utero and discovered the presence of almost 300 chemicals, many of them had been banned 30 years before the samples were tested. These chemicals hang around in the environment for a long time and the sooner we can do what is within our control to reduce our exposure to them, the better. There’s no better time to start than right now.

Stay tuned for some exciting ways that you can take action with ease and support! Be the first to know by clicking here.

Remember – “We do what we can as we move forward, and we release any guilt of what we didn’t know.” Let’s move forward together.

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What You Need to Know to Ease Your Fears about Conception and Pregnancy

I hope you had a wonderful 4th of July and that you got to relax a bit over the holiday weekend. The picture below is my view while relaxing in a hammock in my parent’s backyard.

relax 4th of julyOn the 4th, my husband and I also put to rest a question that we’ve had for the last 8 years – we discovered that we don’t have access to the roof of our apartment building to watch the fireworks (no surprise there from a liability standpoint, but we’ve been wondering for a while). We also discovered that even from the 12th floor, we couldn’t see the fireworks that we were hoping to see.

Isn’t it funny that it took us 8 years to actually check to see if we could get on the roof? It didn’t take much time or effort to uncover the answer, but year after year we put it off.  Sometimes we just don’t want to know the truth.

Truth can be scary, but it’s so important, right?

As I always seek to share with you from a place of love and not fear, I often struggle with how to share the things that are really important without making you feel overwhelmed or worried.

But here’s the thing, without the truth, you will find yourself even more overwhelmed.

You’ll be searching for answers and coming up with all sorts of information. The best-case scenarios may leave you feeling negatively about yourself if your own experience doesn’t live up to those stories.  The worst-case scenarios may leave you feeling full of anxiety and worry when there is no need for it.

Finding this middle ground can be a challenge in and of itself, and I’m here to help you with that.

In a couple of weeks I am going to be opening registration for a free video series that is going to help you be able to embrace the truth with love and compassion.

For now, here’s what I want you to know that will help make this an empowered journey:

Focus on what you can control

Release worry around what you can’t control

Find ways to bring joy into your daily life (yes, this is important for fertility!!)

Remember to be patient and compassionate with yourself

When you start with these, you are setting the groundwork to accept the truths that will support you.

I’d love to know what you’re hearing or reading that brings up more fear than you want it to. Leave a comment and let me know, and I’ll try to address your concerns in these upcoming videos!

Peace, Love, and Wellness,

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Clearing Up the Difference Between Fertility and Infertility

fertility infertility
I’ve got a really important message for you this week.

This is something that I’ve thought about for a very long time and I’ve wondered how to talk about it, when to talk about it, and finally last week I decided to stop wondering and just do it.

I think for many women reading this, what I am going to tell you will make you feel so much better. My hope is that if you have a ball of tension around your heart when it comes to this topic, that it will begin to ease a bit now (I wrote about this on the blog a few weeks ago).

This is a reframe – an opportunity for you to look at something in a new way.

This is a chance for you to feel empowered by your body instead of full of fear, anxiety, guilt or shame about what your body can or can’t do.

This will help you to embrace what’s within your control and to let go of what you can’t control.

In letting go, you free up space for the magic to happen. Tweet This!

I recently shared with someone that when it comes to fertility and infertility I think too often women get lost in the language. I told her that I think for a lot of women, when they hear “fertility” they think of struggle, of having difficulty conceiving, of not being fertile. “Oh my gosh, you’re right!” she said, “I think that’s how I’ve thought about it too.”

I raised the question on Facebook with a word association game – “When you hear the word fertility, what comes to mind?”

One woman wrote, “struggle” while another wrote “confusing, hard, mysterious, a pain, not precise, too precise…”

If that’s how you think about it too, I want you to be open to a new possibility.

What if you flipped this on its head? What if you could separate fertility from infertility? What could that open up for you?

I want you to feel empowered when you hear the word fertility, no matter what your journey has been like in the past, no matter what stories are part of your narrative.

Think of fertility as being proactive, about creating the best and most nourishing environment in your body, mind, and spirit that you can, about cultivating a space that is full of joy, love, and all that you need for growth.

Hold compassion for yourself as you step onto this path.

I want you to step into this feeling of fertility as what you can do first and foremost for yourself. And remember, fertility is not just about preparing yourself to grow a baby; it is about preparing yourself to live your life to the fullest, with passion and joy.

By thinking about fertility in this way, you prepare yourself to bring more gentleness and kindness to yourself if infertility does become part of your story. You will know that you have set a strong foundation, and you will move forward on your journey feeling more empowered than overwhelmed.

I’d love to know what fertility means for you, and what this perspective opens up for you. Leave a comment below and let us know!

Peace, Love, and Wellness,

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