Let’s face it: pregnancy is hard. Your body is going through significant—and often uncomfortable—changes, your life is in transition mode and chances are everybody everywhere wants to hear how are things going?and how are you feeling? Not only that, but your health suddenly goes under a microscope, so you find yourself questioning every decision, evaluating every outcome and making changes to your lifestyle you’ve never thought of before.
There’s no way around it: pregnancy is definitely a difficult time for many women. It’s not all sunshine and flowers; there can be quite a lot of stressful moments. And, like many health professionals will tell you, a lot of stress during pregnancy is not healthy for you or your future child. So, how do you combat these stressors? By treating yourself and embracing “me time.”
“Me time,” unlike “you time” or “we time,” is all about focusing on yourself, taking some time to relax and truly treating yourself during your pregnancy. Not only does this help women to destress, but it can also be a calming process that allows women to feel more confident about pregnancy overall. Like any stressful situation in life, pregnancy requires time to decompress, unwind and focus on the positive. What are some ways you can treat yourself and embrace “me time” during pregnancy? We have some ideas.
1. Exercise. Exercising is a great way to relieve pent-up stress during pregnancy. Not only does exercise give you endorphins that help improve your mood, but it can also give you an outlet to release anxiety or frustration. If you didn’t exercise regularly before you were pregnant, now is a great time to start. Gentle exercises like swimming, walking or yoga are the perfect way to release stress, stay in shape and get into healthy habits for you and your future baby.
2. Refocus. Sometimes the best way to destress during pregnancy is simply refocusing your mind and body on a center purpose. For example, yoga is a great tool that can not only exercise your body, but also your mind, as you take time to focus on breathing, relaxation and meditation. Try setting aside time each morning to focus on having a calm, quiet time of reflection. Whether you choose to meditate, journal or spend time in spiritual thought is up to you, but giving your mind a chance to breathe and refocus is the perfect way to eliminate stress throughout the rest of your day.
3. Rejuvenate. Sometimes, the best way to relax is to sit back and have a spa day. Take a nice, long hot bubble bath that relaxes those tight muscles. Or, get a professional massage done to work out all the kinks and knots from built-up stress manifesting in your body. Or, go to a spa and pamper yourself with a day of facials, manicures and pedicures. Think about this: you are literally growing a human inside of you. You deserve some time off to go to the spa and rejuvenate.
4. Date. During pregnancy, it’s easy to feel like less of a person and more like a container carrying a person. Everybody wants to ask about the baby, how the baby is doing, plans for the baby, etc. This constant bombardment and lack of autonomy can result in a lot of pent-up stress for some women. So, take some time to just be yourself for awhile.
Go on a date night with your significant other and agree to not talk about the pregnancy the whole night. Or, go to a movie with friends and focus on current events in their lives. Try going out and about to different activities within your community, and take time to focus on yourself rather than the pregnancy. Getting those opportunities to go out, feel like your old self and not think about all the changes in life is the perfect way to destress.
5. Talk. Finally, if you feel stress and anxiety building up, treat yourself by talking to someone else. Find a close personal confidant and confide your feelings in him or her. Remember: just because you are pregnant does not mean you have to be happy all the time. It’s okay to not be okay. Talk out any stress you may be feeling and work through it with someone else. Getting emotions out will be one of the best ways to release stress and feel better during the pregnancy.
Pregnancy can be a very stressful time. During your pregnancy, it’s important to prioritize yourself and your own mental, physical and emotional wellbeing. Treat yourself and embrace the “me time” by trying out some of these tips to destress before baby comes.
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