Julia Jones is a heart-centred entrepreneur. She’s an Ayurvedic postpartum doula with over ten years of experience. She is a mentor and a coach to many postpartum professionals around the world, including me.
One of Julia’s most transformative offerings is Newborn Mothers Collective. This is an advanced postpartum training course for birth & postpartum professionals who believe birth is about making mums too. So if you’re a midwife, doula, yoga teacher, physiotherapist, chiropractor, obstetrician or anyone else who works with a population of newborn mothers, this course could give you the tools to support women in a totally radical and life-changing way.
Would you like to know more? You can watch my interview with Julia below. Or if you prefer, you can scroll down and read the transcript.
A: Hi everyone, I’m Antonia from Peaceful Postnatal, and today I’m really excited to be chatting with Julia from Newborn Mothers. Hi Julia.
J: How are you Antonia?
A: I’m really good. So, I’ll just tell people a little bit about you, and then you can introduce yourself. So, Julia created a new approach to postpartum that brings mothers all over the world peace and joy and now she teaches people how to do the same thing, through her course Newborn Mothers Collective. I really love your work, Julia, and I’m a big fan of Newborn Mothers Collective. It totally transformed my professional life, and my personal life, so thank you so much for everything you do, and thanks for coming to chat with me today.
J: My pleasure!
A: Do you want to introduce yourself and tell us a little bit about Newborn Mothers Collective?
J: Yes, sure. So my journey in this work started about ten years ago, when I was not even a mum myself. And actually I came across postpartum through my interest in Ayurveda, an Indian kind of natural medicine, and when I discovered postpartum care I was like, wow, I really need to know about this, I need to understand this.
And there really just wasn’t a lot of information out there, there wasn’t much that I could find out, and I was having trouble getting the answers that I was looking for. And so that sort of set me off on this journey that’s been really the last ten years of trying to figure out what these missing pieces are, what the gaps are, in our understanding of postpartum, our education around postpartum, the way that we even view and value postpartum.
And eventually I kind of felt like I figured a few of these things out. Then I started teaching. Because other people were asking me the same questions.
A: So what are the missing pieces?
J: Well, it’s so many different things. And I don’t claim to know everything yet, but certainly the things that I’ve discovered that have worked for me, and for my clients, and that I teach now – it’s really a combination of a lot of the traditional cultural care; so, nearly every culture around the world, I think nearly 200 have been studied, have very specific postpartum care practices, that now, people have no idea about. And those include things like resting, eating well, and bellybinding, and massage. And these kinds of things are really so normal, and so expected in other parts of the world, but are just completely forgotten in Australia.
A: So everything that you just described, is that included in the content of the course?
J: It is. That’s only one module. Because then the other pieces that I found that were missing, was really what is a very new understanding of women’s brains. So really over the last sort of 50 years or so, we’ve made massive developments in terms of understanding how brains work, how hormones work, and most especially, we’ve had women entering fields of science and research and anthropology, that mean that we’ve got completely new perspectives on topics that we just didn’t know about before now.
And so, you know, when you bring together that traditional medicine and also the science, then that’s when you can really start to get some big “aha!” moments. See how all these things work and fit together, and why they all exist, what’s the real meaning behind them.
A: That is so fascinating. I feel like I’m totally geeking out right now, I could talk about this kind of stuff all day. Do you find that the people who are taking the course – what sorts of fields are they coming from, and how are they using this work in their own lives?
J: So many different ways. It’s probably one of the biggest questions I get. Some people say, I’ve never done any training before, I’m totally new to this work, but I’m just really inspired, is it too early for me to do this? And the answer is: “Absolutely not.”
So a lot of people who are doing the course, maybe they’ve had their own baby, or they’ve seen friends have babies and they’ve just had this realisation that there’s this huge gap in postpartum care. And then this is their first step to looking for answers. So a lot of the people doing the course are totally brand new.
A lot of other people doing the course sometimes have been midwives, or other kinds of professionals, doulas, for 20 or 30 years, but also recognise that in their education, there has still been this postpartum gap. It’s just not something we even think of as a thing. And so even for those people who have had decades of experience, they still find it very eye-opening. They’re like, wow, I never saw things from that perspective before. And I think that’s just because culturally it’s a really big blind spot. We just don’t have an understanding or an awareness of postpartum. Even when you’re looking for answers, they can be very hard to find.
A: Yeah. Yeah, it is definitely a blind spot. And I love that you’re filling that gap. So after people have gone through the course, then what happens after they graduate?
J: Well the most obvious thing that people think about is obviously becoming a postpartum doula and doing in-home visits. Some people have other skills that they can bring to that, like cooking and massage.
But actually a lot of people also use what they have learned in their existing work. So for example, if they’re a yoga teacher they might start just planting those seeds and just introducing those ideas to their students. A lot of people are really keen to run postpartum education classes, just like people would run a childbirth education class, but there’s not really any postpartum education that you can do during pregnancy. So some people prefer to teach.
And some people are midwives working in hospitals, and still say that they’ve found it really useful to inform the way that they practice inside the system.
So there’s really a wide variety of applications, because basically what I teach is really about paradigm shift, it’s really about a new perspective and a new way of looking at postpartum. So whatever kind of work that you do, and no matter how new or experienced you are, there’s usually some way that you can find to incorporate that into what you do.
A: Yeah. I love it. Do you want to talk a little bit about the nuts and bolts of the course? I know a lot of people are curious about how does it actually work, how do you do the course, and then what happens when you get to the end of the course and graduate. So do you want to talk a little bit about how it’s all set up?
J: Yeah, a lot of people are quite scared of e-courses. They’ve maybe never done an online course, and they feel like they’re maybe not tech savvy enough. But it’s actually very easy as long as you have an internet connection at some point, and even a device like a smartphone or an iPad, a computer, any device at all. And even the internet connection, you only have to have it for a short time, because you can actually download the entire course and take it with you. Every lesson is available.
I absolutely love online learning, because it’s so accessible for people who English is their second language, or people who maybe have any kind of learning disability. We’ve had dyslexic people doing the course saying they find it really accessible. So because each lesson is available in text, in video, and in audio, it means that you can really explore it in a way that works for you, and for your brain and for your learning style.
So that’s something that I really love about online courses, and something that I’m really proud of. So it’s actually very very easy. If you’ve watched a YouTube video, if you’ve listened to a podcast, if you’ve ever had a chat on Facebook, then you can absolutely participate in the course.
So we go through the six modules. And this time, we’re adding a few break weeks, because we found that some people were getting a bit stressed and anxious that they couldn’t keep up with the six modules. So people can go ahead if they want to, but we’ll do a welcome week, and then we have three modules over three weeks, and then we have a break, and then we do another three modules over three weeks and have a break, and then we’ve got some business bonuses, and the graduation. So the course is spread out over about three months, with question & answer calls, and a lot of community interaction. And you know from the group, Antonia, it’s a really beautiful, supportive group of women.
A: It’s such a beautiful community. I think I’m on the Facebook group at least once a day, and I’ve made so many friends in that community that are all over the world, that – I’ve never met them in person, but I feel like I have met them, because we just get each other. But I love that you’re putting in some break weeks this time. Because it takes me a while, I think, to integrate new information. So I love that you’re doing that, and I think that will give people a way to process the information and start to think about how it fits into their own lives.
J: Some people worry, like if for example they’ve been out of university for ten or twenty years, or they never went to university, or they’ve got small children, they kind of worry, like, oh, I don’t know if I’m going to be ready to do study. But really there’s not like a lot of exams, it’s not about writing essays, you know, it’s just not that kind of course. But what it really is, is about processing the information and a new way of thinking about the world. And that actually takes more time sometimes, you know. It’s not like you have to have time at the computer, but you’re thinking about it a lot in your daily life and in your work. So I agree. Having that downtime to really reflect and process the things that you’re learning is actually the most critical part.
A: Yeah. And your approach is very gentle, you’re not really a taskmaster.
J: No, not at all. And some people – of the six modules, for example, one is cooking – some people go, I hate cooking, I’m never going to cook for clients, and I go, “That’s fine, you just skip that module.” You don’t have to do everything. You might just watch the videos once, but if you’re not really into those worksheets, I’m not going to force you to do stuff that’s not relevant for you.
A: I love it. I’m getting excited about it all over again. Is there anything you want to add that I haven’t asked you?
J: No, I don’t think so. I think you’ve covered everything.
A: I’ll post a link to Newborn Mothers Collective below this video. And if people want to find you elsewhere, where can they find you?
The only other thing is that the course enrolments are not open yet, they’re open around the middle of August, I think the 20th. But in the meantime, everyone can sign up for a little free introductory class. So you can pop the link to that up, Antonia, and if people kind of want just a little taste, they can learn a bit more about what I do, what I teach, and this brain science and anthropology that I’ve just very briefly mentioned, you can get introductory lessons there while you’re waiting.
A: That sounds really good. Julia, thanks again, it’s really really lovely to connect with you this way and to chat. And I’m looking forward to the next live round of the course.
J: Yes, awesome! Always a pleasure to chat with you Antonia.
A: See you soon!