I loved chatting to Madeleine Shaw, nutritional therapist, author and mother about:
-The pressure to always do MORE
-Top foods to eat and avoid for anxiety
-The daily practise that GIVES you more time
-IBS – how common it is and how to start managing it
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TRANSCRIPT OF THE PODCAST
Chloe: Hello, and welcome to The Calmer You Podcast. This is your host, Chloe Brotheridge I am a coach and a hypnotherapist and an author of the anxiety solution, and the new book Brave New Girl, which was out a couple of weeks ago. This podcast is all about helping you to become your calmest, happiest, and most confident self. And this week, I am interviewing someone that I have basically followed for years and years, Madeleine Shaw. And it was such an exciting thing for me to speak to her because I remember something like maybe five or six years ago even having to go on a specific diet where I had to cut out certain food because I was having loads of, you know, food intolerances and IBS. And her website and her recipes was something that really helped me at the time. And it was amazing to find someone that was making healthy eating cool. So, I love this conversation with Madeleine. We talked about the pressure to always be doing more. And Madeleine talks about this really candidly, about how it can sometimes seem as though no matter what we’ve achieved, and matter how successful we are, we never feel like we’ve done enough. And we really talk about this phenomena and some ways to start to stop that from holding us back. We talked about the top foods to eat and avoid when you’re managing anxiety. And she also shares with us her top tip for a daily practice that gives you more time. Now, how many of us would like more time in the day? I know I would. This is amazing. And we also talked about IBS. Now it’s incredibly common, and not that much talked about. But we talk about it and talk about how common it is. And she has some ways that we can start to manage it.
So, the reviews have started to come in from Brave New Girl for those that have read it or listen to it on Audible. Just going to share with you a couple of reviews from Amazon so you can learn a bit more. K said, “Reading Brave New go I can relate to everything and felt as though Chloe had access to my brain. I had seen all my doubts and issues I have with myself. I love the way she explains and gives you an exercise to do which really helps you to understand.” Donna said, “I absolutely loved Chloe’s new book and read it in a matter of days. At times it felt like Chloe was reading my mind. As someone who has suffered from my own incompetence and imposter syndrome, there was so much in this book to take out of it and put into practice. My journal is packed with ideas, thoughts and inspiration.” And Anna said, “I feel so refreshed after reading Brave New Girl. It was by far one of my favorite self help books and I absolutely loved every page of it.” So, you can check out Brave New Girl, it’s on Amazon. It’s in all good book shops. It’s on Audible read by me, and I would love it if you left a review if you have enjoyed the book. So, let’s get into the episode with Madeleine Shaw. Thank you so much for joining me. I’m really excited to speak to you. How are you today?
Madeleine: I’m really good, thank you. I back from quite a wild weekend which is quite unusual for me, but it was one of my best friends 30th. So yeah, had no baby with me so let loose and had a great time.
Chloe: Amazing. Amazing. Can you tell us I’m sure everyone who’s listening does know who you are and what you do. But can you for people that maybe don’t, what is it you do and how did you get to where you are today?
Madeleine: So I’m a nutritional therapist, yoga teacher, chef, blogger, few little slashes in that. But it all started for me, I moved to Sydney when I was 19 years old. I went that traveling on my gap – off to school, kind of fell in love with that. For me, it’s like my spiritual home. I was always obsessed with Australian since I was like little. I like arrived there on the plane and I remember I was like this is it for me, I’m going to live there. I called my mom and my mom was like no, please don’t go. And yeah, when I was over there, I had really bad digestive problems. I was diagnosed with IBS and I was trying to figure out what was causing it and that sort of led me to change my diet. I went to see a naturopath and she helped me with like changing my diet. I mean I was eating quite terribly, quite un-nutrient, a very deficient kind of diet of like fruit, rice cakes and a lot of alcohol. [crosstalk] Exactly. So, it probably wasn’t the best for me, let’s say that. But yeah, just really started to learn more about nutrition and health. I was eating in a cafe so much they gave me a job and work there for a few years cooking. And it was a very like creative space in terms of like it was very local produce they got in each week and it was kind of like whatever you want to meet with this make it. And we would make our own kefir or fermenting milk to make yogurt would be great you know, and coconuts. We would make like more cheesecakes with nuts but so with like whey and it was very sort of experimental and very back to basics. And it was really, really cool. It really opened my eyes and I was always one of those people that was like, who am I going to be in life? And I would go – and be like, what am I good at, what job should I have? And they’d be like I don’t really know. But the minute I started cooking and working in food, I was like this is it for me and I had no idea. I wasn’t like I’m going to be a chef or I was just like I want to do something and health and food. And a girlfriend of mine called Melissa Ambrosini, I don’t know if you know her.
Chloe: I know her. She’s been on this podcast, actually. I love her.
Madeleine: Oh. So yes, we both worked in the cafe.
Chloe: Oh, wow.
Madeleine: It all began from this one cafe. She had started her blog. It was called Path to Wellness at the time and she had done like the health coaching and course. So, she caught me on that and kind of helped me and really inspired me definitely to start up a blog and to see that, that could potentially be a business. I moved back to the UK because I needed the support of my family to start my newfound business. And my family are from New Zealand originally, but live in London. So, I grew up in London my whole life. And yeah, just kind of started doing like odd jobs from like, cooking for family friends, to I started doing supper clubs quite early on, which is how I met my boyfriend, a tweet out. It’s been like I want to have these supper club in London. Does anyone know of anyone? They were like this guy, he’s got this restaurant, you should meet him. So yeah, it was business and pleasure. So, that was I think a really key part of my– the beginning of my career was having these monthly supper clubs where, you know, this is London, six, seven years ago, we’re talking, no fermented foods on the menu, or kind of – puddings, all the sorts of things we see in like, everywhere nowadays. You know, it was really unusual. So it was really fun. I kind of bought 40 people together every month. And I did it for about three years to share kind of my philosophy in foods. I had people that came every month. So that’s kind of how it all began and I guess I’m still here, still doing it which is good. And I’ve written three cookbooks and work with lots of brands and yeah, doing lots of different things, studying nutrition as well to become a nutritionist and had a baby as well. So, that’s a summary of the last six years.
Chloe: Yeah. And I must have followed you, since I don’t know, maybe even six years ago. I remember being aware of your – ages. And it has an amazing how you’ve just created all the creative and all the ways you’re helping people. So, so good. Have you ever struggled with anything like I don’t know, anxiety, or stress or anything like that, anything you’ve ever struggled with?
Madeleine: I think so I would say anxiety for me, which is only been a recent thing. And I would say it’s 100% correlated to the time spent on the phone and social media. And you know, when I first started, Instagram was like this kind of fun thing. Like it was not a business for me. Yeah, I put a few recipes up. But it was never like, this is a business platform and I’ll take it very seriously. I was just like having fun and sharing things like cauliflower rice on it. But then as times gone on, and there’s been more pressure to do well, perform more, post to do well, spend more time you know, liking and beating the algorithm or whatever. I think it’s definitely been something that makes me anxious. I would say the thing that makes me anxious is not doing enough. So for me, it’s like I can see someone, they don’t even necessarily have to be the same industry with me is like putting more recipes out or putting more posts or working with different brands. And I’m like, oh my God, I’m not good enough. So, that’s my like, weak – is social media, seeing other people’s success and not feeling that my success is good. And I remember speaking to a woman about this, a woman that’s how I call all my friends.
Chloe: I love the way she’s a woman.
Madeleine: She’s a little bit older than me but we’ll call her a wonderful friend. And she was like, it is crazy because to me, you are so successful beyond your years of your age. And like I would never imagine that you would think that way about yourself. But that definitely for me, is where my anxiety comes from, is that kind of not doing enough within my workspace, even though I do heaps.
Chloe: So, interesting that you say that because that’s what I hear all the time from people is not doing enough, or I heard someone describe as fear of missing goals. If I work hard enough, you’re going to miss that on this goal, you’re going to not reach your potential. Time’s running out, this kind of way we can build this up into something. And it’s kind of a thing of like models are the most insecure about the way they look. You know, successful people can still be, you know, feeling like they’re not doing enough, and not achieving enough and it’s something that is almost universal amongst us then I think. I hear it so, so often. Do you have any tips on overcoming that? What have you done to try to overcome that?
Madeleine: Well, I think a lot of it is for me is awareness and acceptance. So, I think it all stems back from me from growing up at school not doing very well. Like being very average if not kind of below average at school like never won prizes, B team or quiet down below. So academically, I was never that good. And I would just come home to my mom and be like, oh, I’m not very smart. And I went to a private school and it was an amazing school, but they are very, like, if you’re good at something, they love you. And if you’re not, you are so forgotten. And that is just the kind of way it works. And I think because I found this identity of like, doing well and you know, family friends coming up to me and be like you’re so successful, you’re doing so well. And I’m so– it was never something that very came naturally to me because I had what, however long you’re at school for 14 years of never having that. So, I think there’s a little bit of like, this sense of achievement, past school and being like, oh, my God, I am quite good at something and you know, going for it. And I think so awareness of it, and then setting healthy boundaries. So, switching my phone off in the evenings and on weekends has been more of a recent thing for me. But something that has really helped so that I do have downtime where I’m like, not working because the way that we work now and the way I have worked in the past is like from 7am to 10pm. Sometimes every day of the week and that’s not healthy. It’s not consistently all those hours, obviously. But you know, that’s the reality of what’s possible and I’m quite addictive to work. I love what I do. I could keep going and going and there’s always something more to do. So, I think that it’s for me, it’s switching my phone off on a Friday, or at least deleting Instagram because for me, that’s the main trigger. And then like uploading again on Sunday evening, or Monday morning or whatever. So, just having that time away, where I can just focus on my family, myself, my friends, rather than seeing someone else do something and that voice creeping in. So I think the last time I have that voice creeping in the bathroom for me.
Chloe: Yeah, that’s really interesting. I think often it’s, if we get praised for something, it reinforces it. So, you might get praised at work for having a really good work ethic or praise for the way you look. And then that adds that pressure that you got to keep it going or you kind of create an identity around that. And then that drives, you know, overworking, potentially or over worrying about things. So yeah, having boundaries and just being aware of that is a really good, good idea. Can we talk about IBS?
Madeleine: Yeah, of course. I’ve had times in my life when I’ve experienced that. And again, it’s something that is very linked with anxiety, very linked with kind of the stress of modern life.
Chloe: Do you help people in your clinic with that, or I know you put in The Happy Gut Guide as well. So, I want to hear about that. But yeah, can you tell me a bit about what is IBS for the people that don’t know what we’re talking about.
Madeleine: So IBS is a syndrome so it’s different to a disease. A disease is something you have and you can cure it. Whereas a syndrome is something that you often just live with, and you have to manage. So IBS, it’s a sort of umbrella bracket term, but it’s sort of symptoms involving discomfort of your digestive system. And people experience it in all different ways from lots of diarrhea, constipation, to cramps, to pain, to belching; all sorts of different ways of managing it, but it is incredibly linked with stress. So, it’s the catalyst that got me into what I’m doing and I’m forever grateful for it. However, anyone that has IBS knows how difficult it is to have because it could get triggered when you’re feeling nervous before an event. And that’s not the time you want to [??? 14:30]. But for me kind of management has been from a mental side and also food side. So, this year, actually, we launched The Happy Gut Guide, which is a 12 week like online program. So, I linked up with a woman called Laura -, who I like, I’m obsessive. She’s an amazing dietician who specializes in IBS, and specifically the low format diet, and has had years and years of clinical experience. And even though I know a lot about it, and I’m trained and I understand that. I really wanted someone who had already done the work one on one for years and years with clients and seeing how it works. So at the moment, if you have IBS, often you go to the doctor, you tell them your symptoms, and you get diagnosed, and you might get a leaflet, you might not. And you kind of go off into the world and jump on Google or you know, all these sorts of things and it can be quite scary. And obviously everyone experiences it in different ways. So, we just basically wanted to create a platform for people who are struggling with IBS to come and to feel handheld through this program, which basically helps you figure out what causes your triggers, how to manage them, what is the best foods for you to eat because you might get a flare up from raw onion, I might get a flare up from chickpeas. And you know, it’s about understanding what your kind of foods are, that might flare them up. And it might be no foods at all, it might be totally stress or kind of lifestyle related. And then you know, figuring out what they are, and then how to sort of live life afterwards. Because again, and I know I’m repeating myself, but it’s a syndrome. So you can’t cure it, you don’t leave going, I’ve cured my IBS. You hopefully, will be symptom free, but you’ve learned the tools to manage it. And that is I think a lot of the problem that we have around gut health and IBS and things it’s like buy this pill a newer – or eat this fermented food and you have great gut. Like that’s not the way it works. So, I think IBS has its own sort of spokesperson because it’s very different to any sort of diseases or other sort of health related things.
Chloe: Yeah, yeah. And I’ve seen quite a few clients with IBS over the years because it’s hidden therapy side recommended for IBS because of the link to stress and anxiety. And they – kind of shame and not be able to tell people about it because they’re embarrassed. And, you know, I’ve heard people say that they can’t leave the house on certain days. It’s horrible, horrible, you know, it causes stress in itself, you know, as well as being caused by stress. So, it can be like a real cycle. And I think, yeah, just to have more people talking about it and offering support and solutions about – so, so important. And because isn’t it something like 20% of women have IBS?
Chloe: It’s just like, incredibly high number of people.
Madeleine: It is, and it’s common in men as well. And as women, we’re probably a little bit better at speaking about it. And we also created a private Facebook group, which is basically just talks about poop and farts all day long. And it’s just, we made it private because we want people to feel very comfortable, to speak about what’s going on for them. And it’s really nice to read that someone else is going through something similar to you because then you don’t feel alone. And you might have some tips that really work for you that you can share with the other. So, we wanted that kind of community aspect to be quite an important part of it.
Chloe: Yeah, I think knowing that you’re not alone, that is the key to so many things; anxiety, IBS, anything. It just takes the shame away from it, when we’re able to get help. We don’t beat ourself up about how we’re feeling if we know this incredibly common things. When it comes to nutrition and staying calm, are there certain things that people should avoid or should eat, or certain principles that can help with anxiety from your nutritional perspective?
Madeleine: I would say probably, you know, calming your blood sugar levels would be the number one because we all know when we eat like loads and loads of sugar. Like I always think of Halloween, it’s like this massive heart attack from sugar, that you know, it can affect our mood. So, I’d say balance your blood sugar levels, like throughout the day. So, that’s trying to have some protein and fat with each meal. So, let’s kind of talk through a typical day. So, wake up for breakfast, if you’re going to have porridge try and add some nuts and seeds in there. Even you know protein powder porridge is really – or you’d like to have a smoothie in the morning. So adding that protein powder to that or its eggs with – bread and spinach or something like that. But having a bit of protein and fat and each meal will make a big difference, especially breakfast, because it’s the thing that sets you up for the day. And I know a lot of people skip it and they feel bad. But often it means that you’ll then reach for that croissant or the coffee or the other sorts of things that give you that little high and then you drop down and you feel like you need more. Coffee is another thing that we probably have to speak about. Everyone metabolizes it differently. And I think on the whole we’ve got this like, you can have one or two cups a day. If I drink one cup of coffee, I am like jittering. If I drink it 7am I’m still jittering till 8pm I don’t metabolize coffee at all well so I just avoid that. Even though I love the taste of it. It’s really delicious. But I just find like a really jittery.
Chloe: If I were to have a coffee, it would ruin my day. If I were to have caffeine in that level for about five years, if I were to have one, it would be a nightmare. And it is a testament to what a powerful drug it is. So it’s all the coffee lovers. I know everyone’s like don’t take my coffee away from me. But it is a powerful drug, I think.
Madeleine: It is. And I do think people metabolize coffee differently. Like you know, there’s people have espressos before dinner and things like that. But I think you can’t rely on your energy from coffee. I think you shouldn’t be like I can only get through the day from coffee. No, it’s a stimulant, your energy should be coming from good food and good sleep like that is really the most important thing. So, really try and limit your coffee as much as possible. Keep it before 12pm so it doesn’t affect your sleep. And you know, really try and cut it down as much as possible. I know it’s delicious. So again, for your lunch and dinner, doing that sort of protein and fats, trying to up your nutrient content. And the easiest way to do that is to put vegetables in to try and get like two three portions in each meal. And that’s going to make a big difference because your body will feel nourished. You know, we can be overfed but undernourished very easily if we’re not eating like diverse foods. And I think that when you eat vegetables, we all know it makes us feel better, more alive, more natural energy from that food.
Chloe: Do you get like a vegetable box delivered? I imagine you might be the sort of person that will do that or like do you…like a farm, how do you get your veggies?
Madeleine: I do a bit of both. So yeah, I do get like a river food vegetable box. However, because I cook for my job, I’ve got an organic market to grab bits and bobs for specific recipes. But I do think having vegetable works fantastic. It gives you a vegetable target for the week. You know, you don’t want to waste food, so you get X amount to get through and often they’ll mix that up. And that’s really important is that kind of diversity and variety for nutrients. Because often we get in a bit of a vegetable rut of like getting tomato and lettuce or whatever. And just eating that as our only vegetable source. So it’s really good to have the kind of abundance of different vegetables. And then again, on food, I would say sugar is a real trigger for a lot of people’s anxiety because it spikes our blood sugar levels. It gives us kind of that sort of adrenaline, tons of energy, amazing if you’re going to run or something. But if you’re not burning it off in that way, it can be very stimulating. So, if you are eating something, sweet try and have a little bit of, you know, say it’s a cake or whatever, have some yogurt with it to add in that fat and protein, just to kind of, you know, lower it and not overindulge. And like I love sweet things. Last night, I made craps for dinner because I really felt like it, and I love craps, you know, and that is not something I do all the time. But it’s really nice to eat kind of sugar and not so healthy foods. But I think it’s about having the motivation, and knowing that they might have an effect on your sleep and your sort of overall mood as well.
Chloe: I think that’s just so good to be aware of because a lot of people in my experience aren’t even aware that your food will make any difference to mental health, to anxiety levels. But you know, you only have to get that kind of low blood sugar feeling that can almost make you feel panicky to realize that it could affect that your blood sugar level can affect how you feel in terms of anxiety. So, definitely recommend that people pay attention to this and experiment with it. You know, see oh does make a difference. Get curious about whether having those vegetables or having protein and fat with your carbohydrates could make a difference.
Madeleine: A 100% and I think nutrition is such a tricky subject because everything contradicts everything. And you know, there’s always some sort of new diet coming out or whatever that says that it will, you know, maybe more beautiful than you ever were. But I do think that it is really about listening to your body. And I think we’ve lost that sort of ability to go, I’m hungry, you know, we’re eating for boredom, or stress or all these sorts of things. So, it’s like tuning in what foods feel right for you? What digests the best? How do you feel after them and really having that kind of communication and that relationship of what food does to your body and what works best for you.
Chloe: Yeah, absolutely. And I want to ask you about meditation because I don’t know if this is on your website ages ago, but it was something like meditation doesn’t take up time, it gives you time. And that really stayed with me. I was like, this is so amazing and so true in my experience, and yeah, what do you think about meditation?
Madeleine: Yeah, I really love that quote as well, because it is the number one thing I think people say when they go, oh, I don’t have time to meditate, I’m a very busy person. I’m also a very busy person. And again, you know, I don’t do it perfectly or twice a day every single day, but I definitely am much clearer headed and I don’t kind of get distracted easily. So, I try and do my 20 minutes meditation in the morning once I’ve dropped – at the nursery, that’s kind of my routine. Actually, I dropped – at the nursery and then exercise, I shower, and then I do my meditation. That’s my kind of thing. So, I do 30 minutes of just, I’ve now not going to the gym, I just put something on YouTube or something. It’s much more efficient.
Chloe: What kind of exercise?
Madeleine: So I really liked doing online workouts. She’s very cool. She does a lot of booty like building. I like having a nice bum.
Chloe: She’s amazing. She says, “Put your mind in the muscle.” [crosstalk] …mind in your muscle. Yeah, that’s helpful.
Madeleine: So, yeah, back to meditating. So, giving myself those 20 minutes, it sounds quite luxurious. I’m definitely much more efficient, like more clear, headed, less tired because it’s incredibly restful. It’s like having like a two, three hour nap, meditating. I don’t know what it is, it makes me more laser focused. And I just feel like I do achieve more on days that I meditate than on days, I don’t. I’ve definitely noticed that about myself and I think it’s difficult to get your head around it and it does sound like a lot of time. And you don’t have to do 20 minutes at the beginning. You know, that’s only if you do the Vedic or the transcendental meditation training. Even if you’re just trying like a – or something like that might only be 10 minutes. But I think if you want to be efficient at work, meditate. And I don’t feel like any book that is written by someone who is a leader or, you know, smashing it in their workplace doesn’t meditate. I feel like anyone you speak to who is successful in life, meditates. Like it just seems to be like, the sort of thing that everyone does because they’ve learned this amazing tool that makes them better at life. And that really is the kind of purpose of meditation is to be more present, less stress more focused. So yeah, I love it. I really, really enjoy doing it. I don’t struggle to do it. There are times when it is a struggle, but on the whole, I do enjoy it.
Chloe: …and have that. Okay, so remember, it’ doesn’t take you time, it gives you time. Do you listen to the Tim Ferriss podcast?
Madeleine: I don’t actually, but I do really like his philosophy and his books.
Chloe: Yeah. Because he interviews like billionaires, athletes, like all the highest performers. And he said, 80% of them meditate and say that is a very important part of what helps them to be successful. So, even more confirmation that we should be meditating. I am wondering about your self care routine, can you tell us a bit about that? So, you do exercise meditation and other things that you do to to stay calm or to look after yourself?
Madeleine: Yeah, I would say kind of that morning routine, for me is my dream. And it doesn’t always happen every day because – goes to nursery on three days. And it is a lot harder to do that whole shebang with a one year old because, you know, they’re quite needy, and they want your attention and they’re not interested in staying in the house that long. So it doesn’t always work every single day. But on the days, I can, I will do that. But other things to me like I would say the things that light me up. And I work this through with a life coach. I did some work with a life coach maybe four-five months ago, which really helped me and we got like, clear on like, what are the things that really made me happy and like, light me up and look after me and stuff. Because I think a lot of people just get a bath or this or this. Okay, so the meditation nature is really important to me. So, every day just walking through the park or, you know, if I’m lucky, going a little bit further out to slightly more countryside. When I’m in nature, I just feel better, I feel happier. I like the freedom of just like walking wherever you want to do. Freedom is a big word for me. So like, I like the freedom of my job. I like the freedom of walking aimlessly. And another thing that is self care for me is like having time of doing whatever I want. Which sounds kind of strange or sort of like a teenager-ish, but like mapping an afternoon where it’s like, if I want to go to -, walk the streets, I’ll do it. There’s no like appointment in my diary or like to do list or whatever. And I can do this with my family on the weekends as well. But just that sort of freedom of doing whatever I want feeds me really well. And what else do I do for self care? I think yeah, it kind of we spoke about before but presence and family time and quality time as well. I did you know the languages of love book?
Chloe: Yeah, yeah.
Madeleine: The five languages of love, which I really recommend as a book. And it kind of teaches you what love means to you and how you receive love. And one of them is like quality time for me. So I really like make sure that that’s like built in with the people that I really care about as well. And you know, baths and yoga and all these sorts of things also make me feel good. But I would say those are like the things that really get into my soul.
Chloe: Amazing. Just to say a bit more about the five love languages, there’s a quiz you can do. Did you do the quiz online?
Madeleine: So yeah, you can get the quiz online before you buy the book. Yeah, you can to find– and you can find that quite a lot from the quiz to be honest.
Chloe: So yeah, you can if you just Google the five love languages, and you can get your partner to your friend and find all this information about how you can show them love. So, my boyfriend really likes words of affirmation.
Madeleine: My boyfriend’s gifts [crosstalk] constantly. I know it’s like the most shallow one, isn’t it?
Chloe: That’s a tricky one, though.
Madeleine: I’m always like buying something online for him.
Chloe: But at least you know that because he might not had even known that. Or…how to ask that necessarily.
Madeleine: I totally agree. I wouldn’t have even picked it. When we did our test we got results. I mean, I knew he liked presents, but I didn’t realize because mine was so low on gifts. I have no interest in gifts. It doesn’t mean anything to me really. I mean, I do love a gift every now and then, but it’s just not something of importance to me. Where as it was really strong for him. So yeah.
Chloe: I suppose I don’t actually think it is that low, it’s about the thoughtfulness of like– [crosstalk] My sister’s, the same actually…saying this, but yeah, we always had laughs about how she loves gifts, but she does love gifts, she just loves it.
Madeleine: Yeah, you know, and it is so nice by a gift. And you know, I would prefer buying someone else a gift, I get way more pleasure buying someone. So, it’s fantastic that I’ve got away from the lights gift.
Chloe: Amazing. And I love that you spend some time really thinking about what are the things that light you up. Because it’s really just easy to not do that and just to go through your life. Not prioritizing, doing nice things yourself or not even giving yourself a time to think oh, what do I really love to do? Yeah, just suggested that everyone does that, you know, write down what are 10 things that light you up and just you know, whatever it is, it doesn’t need to be the classic thing or like a bath or you know even nature. Maybe you, you know, love walking around museums or something like that. But it is just identifying it, and then building that more into your life. I love that, I do.
Madeleine: I think we’re sort of used to someone else telling us what we like. You know, we read the five tips to self care or whatever and they are all lovely. And they’re all very helpful. But actually, do they care for you? Isn’t it? It’s like that in a connection of like, what I like we almost have lost because we’re being told so many different things at all times of the day.
Chloe: That’s really interesting. Yeah, or just overwhelmed by all the possibilities or the things that you could do. I could do anything in London on a Saturday, but I’m not going to do anything…. So yeah, I love that. I wanted to ask you about how your life has changed as a mom, and how I think that’s a common question that moms get asked like, how do you fit in? Because I’m thinking about having children I don’t know, a couple of years at some point. And when I think about it I think how the hell am I going to find all that time to raise another human being? Have you been surprised by it? How have you coped and managed it?
Madeleine: I feel that it’s going to really annoy people hearing this, but I find it really not hard at all. I find it quite easy.
Chloe: Oh my gosh, this is so good.
Madeleine: I think you are capable of so much more than you ever think that you can. I mean you look back when you’re like a school student or a teenager, and you think all my day was literally just like going to school and that was it. Like all my food is made for me if you were lucky enough to have parents that did that for you. But you know, and then as you get older, you take a little bit more, a little bit more on you’ve got to cook for yourself. And that comes into your routine. And it goes on and on. So, I think it’s a process of life kind of taking on new challenges, and I think you’re capable of more. And then I guess you just have to sacrifice a few things. Maybe it’s more like social engagements, you might not be able to go to as many of them. You know, maybe you have to work a little bit less, or maybe, you know, I think moms on a whole are incredibly efficient because they’ve got less time, you know, no kind of flicking through Facebook, get what’s needed done, and do it quickly so you can get back home to your kids, you know. So, how things changed for me? So I would say I have a new– a much more appreciation for my family and my mom and my dad. I think they’re amazing. Not that I didn’t think they were amazing for but you know, you just go wow, you did all these things for me and more. So, a massive appreciation for them. I think from a work perspective, I’ve not felt as connected with the industry that I have always been in, the wellness industry and have felt maybe more that it’s not as possible for people to do, you know, the sort of elaborate morning routines even though I just said I have one. Or you know, always be able to go to – classes or these sorts of things aren’t always possible for everyone. So, I don’t know, reframing that conversation around really simple wellness tips, whether it’s exercising at home on YouTube, you know, or different ways of self care that you can do around having a family. So, I guess this is why I started my podcast, Get Your Blowback was to have that conversation. I feel like I’ve been welcomed into this new club, you know, this parents club that you never knew was there and you connect with people, even though you have nothing in common, but you have something in common, which is that you’re parents. And my brother also had a little girl recently, and I think that I am much closer to him now. We’re very different people, but I feel like our relationship will get better and better because we’re kind of connected in this special way. So yeah, I guess lots of different that it’s changed me. I think I’m probably more patient, I have felt I have more purpose, and definitely feel more connected to my boyfriend in this kind of family unit of raising our son together, which is really nice.
Chloe: I loved hearing that. I think there is a lot of talk. I mean, I hear from people a lot that they don’t want to have kids because they’ve heard so many bad things about it. Like you get told, like horror stories or like, you hear about the sleep and the birth and actually, it’s so good just remember the good things, the really good things, the reason that people have children in the first place and you know, it doesn’t have to mean that, you know, give up on your whole life, you know, they can fit in around you….
Madeleine: A 100%. And yeah, you’ve got to adapt to different challenges along the way. And yes, the beginning bit is hard with the lack of sleep. But it’s very short, you know, is a short period of time and I think, yeah, just get support from around you, and I think you have to be okay about letting things go from the past. You know, don’t try and cling on to the person you were before you had children, like just embrace the person that you are now and all the things that you can do. I think that that’s definitely something that’s helped me.
Chloe: Yeah, fascinating. Is that something from the podcast guests that you’ve had, that you think is a really good tip that you want to share with people who’ve got kids?
Madeleine: Gosh, I feel like everyone on there has given different words of wisdom from what to eat, to how to sleep as a parent to, you know, coping with anxiety. So I don’t know if there’s one particular thing. I guess, the underlying theme of the podcast is to look after yourself because I think as mothers and fathers of course, you give, give, give. You know, you give everything that you have to this little human if not more, and it’s kind of bringing that back to like time for you. So, that’s the overall theme of it.
Chloe: Amazing, amazing. What are you working on at the moment?
Madeleine: You know what, nothing like massive, which is really unusual. For me, I think I’m having this– I think I’m evolving as a person, which is really good. Because I say a year or so ago wouldn’t have coped with the lack of achievements that I probably have at the moment. So, I’ve got a lot on– I’m working on my podcast, which is fantastic. I’m wanting to create like a little toddler meal plan ebook for mums who need inspiration on kind of what to feed their kids. Because I mean, they’re obviously great recipe books out there, but they’re not very modern than the way that we cook now. You know, we Indian one night and Chinese food the next and Mexican. Whereas we kind of give our kids like pasta or like baked potato or something, which is fine and kids love it. But I think it’s maybe getting a little bit more modern with our kids foods and making it work for the family as well. So, those are probably my two projects, and then working with brands on different kind of collaborations, which is really fun. But yeah, nothing kind of huge, which is really– I’m really enjoying I think, since becoming a mom and maybe just over the last year. I’m not sure if it’s even related to being a mom or not. But I don’t know, I haven’t had this massive message that I used to have. So, when I began my blog, I was like, why are we not talking about kind of food in this positive, healthy way? We’re always talking about diets and deprivation. And now you know, you can buy sterilized [??? 40:52] from Tesco you know. Not that I’m saying I did that, but with a collective of other people in the similar space. The way we eat has changed hugely. And for the better, I hope. Although, I’m sure there’s heaps more to do. So, I don’t know, I feel like I don’t know what my voice is at the moment and I’m okay with, I’m not freaking out. But I don’t have that same like, I am here to talk about this and you must hear me, which I a 100% had. And it fueled me through the first five years of my career. And now I’m like, I’m here and I’ve got a few things to offer you. But I don’t have that same inner calling and spark that I used to have, which I battled with a lot at the end of last year, and now I’m much more accepting of it. And I know I will find my mojo, again, my Austin Powers.
Chloe: Yeah, well, maybe it’s nice to kind of have something come from a place of not having to like push and strive and stress and like the pressure that we put on ourselves and always need to have a complete project. Because like, I’m sure you’ve had this with writing a book. Like you write a book and you also have your other job like that you’re still doing full time. So, it’s like this big project also, like all your extra– all the same work. So, it’s not like necessarily that fun to do but doing that all the time and kind of constant cycles of having like – projects. And maybe it’s nice to like take a step back, recalibrate, decide what you know–
Madeleine: Yeah. 100%. And I think I’m being like, kind of appreciative of all that I’ve done. Because I think I did three books in three, and you don’t really like you don’t step back because the second your book gets published, you do a book tour. And then you’re like, they’re like, okay, wait, what’s your next book? And then you’ve got to do it all over again. And I think whether you’ve written a book or not, you know, actually going oh yeah, I’ve done this, that was really cool. And like, oh, yeah, I did that and that’s really cool. And I think otherwise, you’re just constantly writing books until you die.
Chloe: Gotcha. We really need to just take stock, recognize how far we’ve come, yeah, slow down a bit. That’s good message for us all, yes. Thank you so much for talking to me. I loved this conversation. Where can people find out about you? Where do you hang out the most?
Madeleine: I’ll probably say Instagram is where I’m hanging out the most which is just Madeleine_Shaw_ so any Madeleine shows up there when they do it. And then also my podcast, which is called Get Your Glow Back.
Chloe: Brilliant. Thank you so much.
Madeleine: Thank you.
Chloe: So, thank you so much for listening to this episode. I would love to hear what you thought of it. Come on over to Instagram, and find me @ChloeBrotheridge and let me know. I’ll be so grateful if you have enjoyed this episode, if you left a review in iTunes, and make sure you subscribe and give it a rating. It help so much to spread the word about this podcast. And I’ve had so many amazing messages from people saying how this podcast feels like therapy, how much it’s helping, how you listen to it on your way to work, and it helps you to have a better day. And I’d love just to spread the word about it and help more people to access this free resource. So, please do help me spread the word. So, I hope you have a great week. I’m sending you loads of love and hopefully, you’ll tune in again soon.