By Kirsten Karchmer

Comprehensive Guide to Self-Care When Trying to Conceive (TTC)

Comprehensive Guide to Self-Care When Trying to Conceive (TTC)

Self-care is the practice of nurturing all aspects of your health, with a focus on physical, emotional, and mental well-being.

When trying to conceive (TTC), self-care becomes even more crucial as it can help manage stress, improve overall health, and increase the chances of conception. This guide will delve into various self-care strategies, supported by clinical data, to help you navigate your TTC journey with love and compassion.

Why Self-Care is Important When TTC

The stress and pressure associated with trying to conceive can have detrimental effects on mental health and physical well-being. According to the Mayo Clinic, stress can negatively impact fertility by affecting hormone levels and menstrual cycles. Engaging in self-care practices can help mitigate these effects, promoting a healthier and more balanced approach to conception.

Self-Care Strategies

1. Tapping (Emotional Freedom Technique - EFT)

Clinical Data: EFT, also known as tapping, combines ancient Chinese acupressure and modern psychology. Research at Harvard Medical School has shown that stimulation of selected meridian acupoints decreases activity in the hippocampus and other parts of the brain associated with fear. A study by Dawson Church, Ph.D., found that EFT significantly lowers cortisol levels, which can reduce stress and improve fertility outcomes.

How to Practice: EFT involves tapping on specific points on the body while voicing positive affirmations. This technique helps release negative emotions and stress, promoting a sense of calm and well-being.

Example Script You Can Try:
- Karate chop: "Even though I believe that I cannot be happy until I am pregnant, I accept myself anyway."
- Eyebrow: "I believe that I cannot be happy until I am pregnant."
- Side of eye: "It feels like my life is on hold."
- Under eye: "There is just too much to think about."
- Under nose: "All of these worrying thoughts."
- Chin: "I’ll be happy when I’m pregnant."
- Collar: "And not a moment sooner."
- Under arm: "I can’t be happy until I am pregnant."
- Top of head: "I will relax when I am pregnant."

Also, in our app, Kirsten AI there are free tapping videos you can follow along with for a more personal tapping experience!

2. Meditation

Clinical Data: Meditation has been shown to reduce stress, improve mental health, and enhance overall well-being. A study published in the journal "Fertility and Sterility" found that women who practiced mindfulness meditation had lower levels of stress and anxiety, which can positively impact fertility.

How to Practice: Set aside 10-15 minutes each day for meditation. Find a quiet space, sit comfortably, and focus on your breath. Allow thoughts to come and go without judgment, bringing your attention back to your breath each time.

Guided Meditation Programs:
- Circle+Bloom offers guided meditation programs specifically designed for fertility, which can help reduce stress and promote a positive mindset.

3. Acupuncture

Clinical Data: Acupuncture has been used for centuries to treat various health conditions, including infertility. Studies have shown that acupuncture can improve sperm quality, ovarian function, and increase blood flow to the endometrium, helping to facilitate a thick, rich lining. A study by Stener-Victorin et al. found that acupuncture treatments pre and post embryo transfer can improve IVF outcomes.

Tips on Acupuncture: Consult with a licensed acupuncturist who specializes in fertility. Acupuncture treatments typically involve inserting fine, sterile needles into specific points on the body to balance energy flow and improve reproductive health. Make sure to use our Kirsten AI, as she can provide valuable clinical insights to your acupuncturist for treatments, point selection and herb prescription. We want to make sure every aspect of your program is personalized perfectly for you!

4. Diet and Nutrition

Clinical Data: A balanced diet rich in essential nutrients can improve fertility. Studies have shown that certain vitamins and minerals, such as folic acid, vitamin D, and omega-3 fatty acids, play a crucial role in reproductive health.

How to Improve Your Diet: Incorporate a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats into your diet. Consider taking prenatal vitamins to ensure you are getting the necessary nutrients.

5. Physical Activity

Clinical Data: Regular physical activity can improve overall health, reduce stress, and enhance fertility. A study published in the "American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology" found that moderate exercise can improve menstrual regularity and ovulation.

Tips on Exercise for fertility: Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise most days of the week. Activities such as walking, swimming, and yoga are excellent options. Strenuous exercise has been shown to have a negative impact on fertility outcomes. Kirsten AI an assess your situation and create a healthy expercise program for you! 

6. Affirmations

Clinical Data: Affirmations are positive statements that can help shift your mindset and promote self-care. Research in psychology has shown that engaging in regular self-care activities, including affirmations, can enhance happiness, reduce stress, and improve overall life satisfaction.

How to Practice: Choose affirmations that resonate with your intentions and goals. Repeat them daily, write them down, and integrate them into your daily routines. For example, "I am worthy of love and care" or "I trust my body and its ability to conceive."

7. Connecting with Friends

Clinical Data: Social connections are vital for mental health. According to Harvard Medical School, spending time with friends can reduce stress, improve mood, and enhance overall well-being.

How to Practice: Make time to connect with friends regularly. This can be through phone calls, video chats, or in-person meetups. Sharing your experiences and feelings with supportive friends can provide emotional relief and strengthen your support network.

8. Walking in Nature

Clinical Data: Walking in nature has been shown to reduce stress, improve mood, and enhance overall well-being. Studies have found that spending time in green spaces can lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol and improve mental health.

How to Practice: Aim to spend at least 30 minutes walking in nature a few times a week. Focus on your surroundings, practice mindfulness, and enjoy the calming effects of nature.

9. Journaling

Clinical Data: Journaling can help process emotions, reduce stress, and improve mental clarity. A study published in the "Journal of Research in Personality" found that expressive writing can lead to better mental health and emotional well-being.

How to Practice: Set aside time each day to write about your thoughts, feelings, and experiences. Use journaling prompts if needed, and allow yourself to write freely without judgment.

10. Pursuing Hobbies

Clinical Data: Engaging in hobbies can reduce stress, improve mood, and enhance overall well-being. Research has shown that creative activities can provide a sense of accomplishment and joy.

How to do it: Dedicate time each week to activities you enjoy, such as painting, knitting, gardening, or playing a musical instrument. These activities can provide a mental break and boost your mood.

11. Practicing Gratitude

Clinical Data: Practicing gratitude can improve mental health, increase happiness, and reduce stress. A study published in the "Journal of Positive Psychology" found that gratitude practices can enhance well-being and life satisfaction.

How to Practice: Keep a gratitude journal and write down three things you are grateful for each day. Reflect on these positive aspects of your life and allow yourself to feel appreciation.

12. Mindful Breathing

Clinical Data: Mindful breathing can reduce stress, improve focus, and enhance overall well-being. Research has shown that deep breathing exercises can activate the parasympathetic nervous system, promoting relaxation.

How to Practice: Practice deep breathing exercises daily. Inhale deeply through your nose, hold for a few seconds, and exhale slowly through your mouth. Repeat this process for a few minutes to calm your mind and body.

13. Setting Boundaries

Clinical Data: Setting boundaries can protect your mental health and reduce stress. According to the American Psychological Association, healthy boundaries are essential for maintaining well-being and preventing burnout.

How to Practice: Identify areas in your life where you need to set boundaries. Communicate your needs clearly and assertively, and prioritize your well-being by saying no to activities or commitments that drain your energy.

14. Seeking Professional Support

Clinical Data: Professional support, such as therapy or counseling, can provide valuable tools for managing stress and improving mental health. Studies have shown that therapy can lead to significant improvements in emotional well-being.

How to Practice: Consider seeking support from a licensed therapist or counselor, especially if you are experiencing high levels of stress or emotional challenges. Professional guidance can help you develop coping strategies and navigate your TTC journey.

You can also use Kirsten AI as your virtual emotional support coach. You can jump in and chat with her everyday about whatever is upsetting or stressing you out. You will be surprised how beneficial people find the daily emotional check in!

15. Practicing Self-Compassion

Clinical Data: Self-compassion involves treating yourself with kindness and understanding. Research has shown that self-compassion can reduce stress, improve mental health, and enhance overall well-being.

How to Practice: Practice self-compassion by speaking to yourself kindly, acknowledging your efforts, and forgiving yourself for any perceived shortcomings. Remind yourself that you are doing your best and deserve love and care.

How Kirsten AI Can Help

Managing the emotional and physical aspects of TTC can be overwhelming. Kirsten AI, your personalized AI fertility expert, is designed to provide comprehensive support throughout your journey:

- Emotional Support: Kirsten AI offers 24/7 access to personalized emotional support, helping you manage stress, anxiety, and other emotional challenges associated with TTC.
- Personalized Recommendations: Based on your clinical history, menstrual cycle, diet, sleep patterns, and stress levels, Kirsten AI generates a customized plan tailored to your unique needs.
- Continuous Monitoring: Kirsten AI continuously monitors your progress and adapts recommendations as needed, ensuring you stay on track.
- Nutritional Guidance: Receive personalized meal plans, recipes, and shopping lists to support your nutritional needs and improve reproductive health.
- Stress Management: Kirsten AI provides stress management techniques and mind/body exercises to help you cope with the emotional toll of TTC.


Trying to conceive can be a challenging and emotional journey, but incorporating self-care practices can make a significant difference. By engaging in activities such as tapping, meditation, acupuncture, and maintaining a healthy lifestyle, you can improve your overall well-being and increase your chances of conception. With the support of Kirsten AI, you can navigate this journey with personalized guidance and emotional support, helping you feel more empowered and hopeful.

For more information and to start your personalized self-care journey, visit

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