Essential Self Care in Pregnancy | Six Mindsets To Embrace
The way a woman’s body changes to adapt to pregnancy is pretty remarkable. Over the course of the 40 weeks, you are pregnant, your body will do exactly what it needs to do to nurture that new human you are growing!
However, many women are surprised at the rapid shift of emotions that they feel during this time. Even women who describe themselves as “down to earth” or “pragmatic” can be taken off guard by how pregnancy changes their lives.
Make no mistake; we believe in a little “Treat Yo’ Self” during pregnancy! Go ahead and indulge in a pedicure or a massage now and then if you can.
However, the kind of self-care we want to talk about doesn’t cost any money at all and should be practiced as often as you can during pregnancy.
You know the basics of what this looks like. A good diet, plenty of rest, and exercise is key. But it can also mean honoring your body when it tells you it needs more or less of something without being too hard on yourself.
For example, if you are a runner, your body might give you clear signs that it is not having it when you go on those long runs now. Switch your mindset; walking or perhaps swimming is less impactful and stressful on your joints right now. Remember, being pregnant is a temporary condition!
This is a big one. Being mindful of how you feel and being able to express that healthily is so important during pregnancy. If you’re feeling emotionally taxed, then your baby is too.
Setting aside time to be with positive people who support you can really help, along with mindfulness exercises like meditation. If at any time, your thoughts turn especially dark, and you feel like things are spinning out of control, contact your care provider immediately.
We are here to tell you, “baby brain” is a thing! Being more absent-minded during pregnancy does happen to some women. While there is no medical proof as to why many experts attribute it to the emotional and physical changes as women prepare for motherhood.
Activities that stimulate your brain like art projects, crosswords, or reading can help feed your mind and stimulate your brain. If at any time you feel like you are having a sharp cognitive decline, contact your care provider as soon as possible.
Pregnancy is a time where many women begin to take stock of what is truly important in their lives. The idea of bringing a child into the world can seem like a big responsibility, so it’s not uncommon to feel like you want to examine who you are and what you value before that happens.
What are you passionate about? For example, if you are passionate about eco-friendly options, you can spend time researching the right choice for your family with diapers, wipes, and clothing options for baby.
For some, this may take the form of coming closer to their faith and spending more time in prayer. Whatever it means for you, your spiritual health matters during this time because it can help ground you in the future after baby arrives.
While most women can work throughout their pregnancy, it’s not without its challenges. You may feel tired more frequently, and if your job is very physical, you may be limited to what you can do towards the end of your pregnancy. You may need to take breaks more frequently or talk to your employer about a lighter work schedule.
Being cognizant that your body is changing, and you will need to make accommodations can be easier if you see it more as an accommodation to the baby, and not as a failure of your body. Your body is going through a lot of changes in the weeks you are pregnant!
Social Life Care
Your relationships with your partner and your friends and family can change during pregnancy. The role of becoming a mother may be conflicting with your view of your “former self,” and that can be confusing.
Suddenly you’ve gone from a carefree couple out for a night of karaoke with friends to wanting to do nothing more than crawl into bed by 9 PM on a Saturday night! This can cause you to feel conflicted and maybe you’re even grieving a little for how things used to be.
Talk to the people you care about and let them know how you feel about these changes to your social life. Make sure those that are around you support spending time with you in a way that feels right for you. And most of all, realize that (yes, we are going to say it again) this is temporary. You will sing again!