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Author: January Harshe

The Harshe Podcast – Episode #18: New Year, New You Do You Boo

The Harshe Podcast – Episode #18: New Year, New You Do You Boo

January and Brandon are back with their first podcast of 2018! Brandon talks about pulling the best traits from various role models and January talks about being a conscious social media user. Also, Brandon talks about how he became a new him at 12:01am January 1st!

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Click here to download Episode #18: New Year, New You Do You Boo!


We are having a New Year’s Sale at Self Love Generation! Everything is 25% off! Get a shirt, coffee mug, and lanyard today! And remember, shipping is always 4-6 weeks!


Only a handful of Find Your Village events are left! Tickets still on sale for Kansas City, Stillwater, and Portland, ME at BWF! Buy one today to see January speak live about self love, self care, and body positivity!

The Harshe Podcast – Episode #17: F*ck Luck and Screw Balance

The Harshe Podcast – Episode #17: F*ck Luck and Screw Balance

January and Brandon are back from their unexpected hiatus and they can’t remember what episode they’re on! January discusses her irritation with the words luck and balance, and Brandon talks about focusing on today. They also discuss doing horse lips and napping while getting tattoos!

Subscribe to the Harshe Podcast on iTunes!

Subscribe to the Harshe Podcast on Google Play!

Subscribe to the Harshe Podcast on Stitcher!

Click here to download Episode #17: F*ck Luck and Screw Balance!


Birth Without Fear Conferences are returning in 2018! We are holding two in the U.S. and one in Australia! Register now at! 

Motherhood Temper Tantrums

Motherhood Temper Tantrums

There are times in motherhood where you will simply lose your shit. I’m completely serious. If you haven’t yet, it is coming. If you have, then you know what I’m talking about.

You’re exhausted, pulled in too many directions, and pushed too far. It usually builds up with lack of sleep, always being needed, life stressors, and trying to force things.

The bad part about losing your shit is that it makes everyone sad. Sadness is part of life though, darling. We can’t be happy 24/7. We need to learn and have growth. Like mom guilt isn’t bad enough though, a mommy temper tantrum is great at adding extra. But once the dust settles, you have a good yell or cry or both, and good things can actually come from it.

Shedding all that frustration, hurt, anger, etc. can help you get to the core of the issue. It gives you clarity to see things from a different perspective and to build the pieces back up to be better than before.

I’m not telling you to go lose your shit for the sake of losing your shit, I’m just saying that it happens and it’s not the end of the world, you’re still a good mother, and there’s always a silver lining.

Take a deep breath, try to take some time to yourself to quietly process (when you can), learn from it, and try something different!

Motherhood is the ultimate survival mode, problem-solving, multi-tasking job there is. Figure out what works for your family even if it seems completely unconventional. And be willing to leave some wiggle room for adjustments and change.

If things are really feeling out of sorts, it may be best to take a step back and just go with the flow for a little bit. Say yes a lot more. You’d be surprised how that can help.

Moms, you are allowed temper tantrums too and your family will love you unconditionally through them just like you love and support them unconditionally through theirs. That’s what family does.

The Prenatal Vitamin For Your Mind

The Prenatal Vitamin For Your Mind

I’ll never forget the day I found out I was pregnant. I was filled with a roller coaster of emotions from excitement to fear, to love and anxiety, to a sense of comfort and a waterfall of uncertainty. As my emotions went up and down, all I could think about was getting to see my doctor so he could assure me that my baby was OK.

On the day of my first doctor appointment I was overly eager. I couldn’t wait for the doctor to ease my mind and tell me all the things I could / couldn’t do to have a healthy pregnancy. After my appointment my doctor prescribed me a prenatal vitamin, gave me the number of a nutritionist and went over how to approach exercise from that day forward. Leaving his office, I expected to feel a sense of relief but even with all this additional information, I still felt anxiety. As the months progressed, my mind would often stress out about the well-being of my baby and whether or not I was doing everything right.

To my surprise this worrying started to increase rather than decrease as my pregnancy continued. I longed for my doctor visits so that I could hear my baby’s heartbeat and know that she was ok. This was a vicious cycle as every time I felt the relief that my baby was healthy, it was quickly replaced with the fact that I wouldn’t be back to hear her heartbeat again for another stressful month.

It was during this time of worry and uncertainty that I was laid off from job at 7 months pregnant. This, as you can imagine was a very difficult thing to go through at an already highly emotional time in my life. The day after my last day of work I awoke to an email from my good friend who knew what I was going through and thought I might benefit from Expectful – a new digital meditation platform that’s empowering moms and moms-to-be to give their babies the best start in life.

I hesitantly signed up and decided to commit to meditating every day for one month to see if it had any impact on me. In just three days I noticed an increase in my energy, in one week I was noticeably less stressed and at one month I was happier and more relaxed. Meditation had clearly helped me through losing my job but what I was even more surprised to realize is that when I started meditating I also started worrying less and less. The random negative thoughts that led me down a rabbit hole of stress and anxiety about the health of my baby were no longer able to affect me as they once did. Instead I was filled with gratitude and an abundance of love for my baby.

This shift transformed my whole pregnancy and I couldn’t help but wonder why my doctor never talked to me about the health of my mind during such a challenging time. Just as exercise kept my body feeling strong, Expectful’s meditations helped my mind feel more focused and energized. Just as my prenatal vitamin gave me the vitamins and minerals my body needed, meditation gave my mind the ease and self-assurance I desperately yearned for.

This brought me to the obvious conclusion that as a society we are missing one key “prescription” when it comes to approaching a healthy pregnancy; the importance of a healthy mind.

The benefits of meditations are well known; decreased stress and anxiety, increased immunity, more focus and better sleep. All of which complement pregnancy in various ways. Not to mention that meditation helps with pain management which is obviously helpful during birth and labor.

Perhaps even more interesting is that research shows that pregnant women who meditate have babies with healthier birth weights and are more likely to go full-term. This shows that when women meditate during pregnancy, there is some kind of connection that is happening between themselves and their babies.

As if that wasn’t enough to get your mind spinning, meditation also helps you to recognize emotions in others and to practice compassion which can help you to feel more connected to your partner during this big transition in both of your lives.

With my own personal experience with meditation and with all the science that proves how meditation can support pregnant women, I can’t help but wonder why we aren’t talking more about a women’s emotional and mental health during one of the most mentally demanding times of their lives. I hope that within the next few years that when women walk into their doctors’ office looking for the tools that can support them, that meditation be right in line with prenatal vitamins, nutrition and exercise.

Editors note: This is a guest post by Anna Gannon from Expectful.

Self Love Movement is Not an Excuse…

Self Love Movement is Not an Excuse…

self love, self acceptance(Editor’s note: This was originally posted on March 14, 2014.)

People are talking more and more about self love, self acceptance, and body positivity. And it’s awesome. It truly is. The world will be better for it. There are, however, people who are anti-self love. Yes, you read that right. There are people who get upset with people loving themselves. Let me give you an example. This lovely person took the time in her day to private message me this…

“Seriously you have a bad attitude it’s really sad how rude and hateful you get with people. Life is about making the best of it meaning making yourself happy which no one wants a big belly hanging over their vagina no that wouldn’t make anyone happy don’t make people feel bad for wanting to change their weight because they’re not happy with how big they’re. the older we get the harder it gets to lose weight plus with our hormones we tend to find it hard to lose weight and gain more and no it’s not healthy to he skinny either but the point here is you seriously need to take a chill pill the truth can he hard to handle but we all want to feel beautiful and you can’t dare say being fat feels beautiful side IT DOES NOT it’s the hard honest truth you need to accept it everytime I see you put stuff up about self shaming all I’m thinking is how much you actually hate being big but you’re too lazy to change it so you try to make yourself feel better about the situation. I’m fat and I’m working on it I won’t let myself go but you need to support women on trying to get healthy!! I heard you talk at a bwf conference and you sounded like you were out of breath I’m sure lots of weight doesn’t help with that. Please help women want to get healthy not just deal with what they have been left with which is being overweight anything is possible and things worth getting are never easy!”

I have a few things to say about this and to all of those who get their knickers in a twist over self love.

•Are there not more important things in life to get worked up over? If people learning to love themselves is an issue for you, open your eyes. There are bigger issues you could positively direct your attention to.

•People miss the point: loving oneself doesn’t mean not working towards change. Reread until it makes sense.

•Do not judge unless you walk in someone’s shoes. For fuck’s sake. Does this person know my story? Take the time to get to know someone and what they’ve been through. We all have a story to tell. Support and love go much further than hate. Oh and guess what….that support and love help with change.

•For example, the being out of breath had nothing to do with my weight. I was literally bone deep exhausted doing four events in one month, running three businesses, traveling and taking care of five children. Yes, I could barely breathe. Maybe instead of sitting there criticizing me, you could have seen how I was and given me a hug while you watched me do that for hundreds of other women.

•Self love is not solely about weight. When we are insecure we make everything about us and our insecurities…which she did. Which I used to do. There are healthy, thin and fit people who do not love themselves. This is what I’ve come to realize and when I promote self love, it’s not ‘fat acceptance’….it’s people acceptance. None of us are perfect, however, we can work towards change, but we can be nice to ourselves in the process.

•The comment is full of hate, assumptions, and dripping with self doubt and hate from the person that wrote it. My first reaction was wanting to tell her to fuck off. Yes, I said it. This unicorn is far from always graceful. I reflect a lot of hate that comes my way. I get more ridicule and hate from people since starting Birth Without Fear than I knew imaginable. I have learned to let most of it roll off and work through things that I take more personal. This cut deep, not because it’s full of truth as she says, but because she wrote it to try and take something in my life and hurt me with it. I came to the conclusion that I am so very sad for her. Not only does she miss the point of loving oneself, but when you don’t love yourself…you can’t love others. I hope she finds peace and in a place she can do this. In the mean time I blocked her ass so she can’t send her self hate my way.

This kind of thing ends up fueling my passion to a whole other level. I will continue to promote and defend self love. I will continue to help women to love themselves and support them in doing that so that they can make changes they wish to make. Isn’t that a brilliant idea? I think so.

{January, the sexy fat unicorn}

self love

Reality of Breastfeeding…Where are the Rainbows?

Reality of Breastfeeding…Where are the Rainbows?

Let’s talk about breastfeeding for a moment. While it would be wonderful if all babies magically nursed perfectly, well…they don’t.

breastfeed without fear

Similar to pregnancy, birth, and motherhood…. breastfeeding is another life lesson that can push us to our limits. It’s a *journey* all of its own.

Out of six children, I have nursed four. I’ve also used formula, pumped (a lot), made my own formula, donated milk, and breastfed babies and toddlers. Also, out of six children, #beardbaby is the only one to come out and latch perfectly (it’s because of the beard magic).

There is no one perfect way for every person, baby, and situation. Yes, breastmilk is a perfect food and our babies are meant to have it. In an ideal world all mothers would make enough milk, all babies would have the perfect latch, and rainbows would appear when we figure it out.

breastfeed without fear

Reality is not always ideal though. What I’m saying is, work hard to give your babies the best nutrition you can, but give yourself grace when it’s hard. Mamas need to be healthy not just physically, but also emotionally and mentally. Do what is best for you, your baby, and your family. Do not care what others say or think. This goes for breastfeeding how and where you please, or if you choose to pump, use donated milk, or use formula.

What matters is you are healthy, your baby is healthy, and your baby is loved and fed. You are doing your best. You are doing enough. Feed and love without fear.

breastfeed without fear

Photography by Leilani Rogers Photographer.

Breastfed Babies are Better, Nursing a 3 Year Old is Gross, And Other Bullshit

Breastfed Babies are Better, Nursing a 3 Year Old is Gross, And Other Bullshit

When my oldest was a year old, a friend told me that my baby and I couldn’t be as bonded as her and her baby because we bottlefed and she breastfed. I wasn’t necessarily offended, as I was confused. I had a very deep bond with my baby and was madly in love her, so how could she claim that? To this day my daughter and I have a special connection.

What pretentious, judgmental bullshit that was. It is absolutely ridiculous when mothers judge each other over breastfeeding and bottlefeeding (it goes both ways). I am not talking about educating or sharing information, but flat out arguing, being snobby, gossiping, and being hateful. If a baby is fed and everyone is happy, keep your mouth shut and fingers off the keyboard.

My goodness ladies, there are bigger problems! Like hungry babies fucking dying. If you are so upset that you need to tear another mother down, get on a damn plane and fly somewhere and nurse those babies. Or feed people in your community because there are starving children right in your neighborhood!

You don’t think women who feed their babies formula know breast is best? No shit. But you know what? You aren’t living their life. You aren’t dealing with their past abuse issues, or postpartum depression and anxiety, or cracked bleeding nipples, or whatever else led to their choice.

A woman wants to cover or not when she nurses, that’s her choice. She wants to nurse her two or three year old, not your problem.

NEWS FLASH: You don’t have to always share your opinions. <— Read it again. Wish I realized that in my 20’s.

So, let me tell you about these two pictures.

january harshe fed is best

Both are same mom, same baby, same day. Both are of a mom who loves her baby with every fiber of her being. Both are of a baby who is loved, fed, sheltered, and adored. Both are of a mom and baby bonding. Both have a baby’s tummy getting full. Both are of a mom doing what she feels best at the given time. There are more similarities than differences.

Mamas, you do you and let others be them without your opinions. Breastfeed without fear, bottle-feed without fear, pump without fear, just feed those babies! We are all in the trenches of motherhood together and we are all going through our own struggles and journeys. Remember when we take a stand to take back postpartum, we also embrace variations of normal. So be a nice fucking human and raise kind people, because that’s what our babies need.

Ordinary is Amazing, Even in Motherhood

Ordinary is Amazing, Even in Motherhood

january harshe peaceMotherhood is beautiful, worth it, amazing, the most joy you’ll ever know, and the most important work you’ll ever do. Isn’t that cliche? Yet it’s 100% true.

It’s also hard. Really fucking hard.

Some days you nail it. Meet all your expectations. Even the hardest ones. Perfect non-GMO all organic meals served in BPA-free bento boxes, activities with enough outside time and everything child led learning. No media because you care about your kids brains, everyone naps at the same time, and you get your house cleaned like rainbows blessed your tile with sparkly rainbow glitter. Dinner is served while you wear AND breastfeed the baby, and you all eat as a family laughing and bonding over the days adventures. No hard liquor needed to survive the witching hours and bedtime goes without a hitch. Gosh you’re doing everything right and have perfect children. Angels, really.

You spend time with your partner and have amazing intimate time. You now have amazing post orgasmic energy, so you make sure the sink is empty, emails answered, and a list ready for tomorrow. Nailed. It.

Can this happen? Yes. Everyday? No. There are too many variables… the first being that you are HUMAN. Team No Sleep is a real thing, not just a fun hashtag, and toddlers can be assholes. Not to mention life is unpredictable.

Do your best, but know this: If today your children are loved, fed, and have a home, they have MORE than they need. If you sit on the couch and nurse your baby while the toddler watches every episode of Daniel the Damn Tiger while eating Frosted Flakes, then your kids are safe, loved, they aren’t hungry, your toddler or preschooler is learning something from that adorable pant-less tiger, and they’re eating vitamin fortified food.

My point is stop beating yourself up for not living up to unrealistic expectations. Stop the mom guilt. You’re already doing more than enough! Let go and enjoy all the little blessings you take for granted and savor each moment you can. They may seem ordinary but they make up what happens to be your life and that is miraculous. The ordinary moments end up being some of the most amazing memories.

gentle adulting, january harshe

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