Pregnancy is an incredible experience! Everything you do for the duration of pregnancy is for two… eating for two, moving for two. It’s not just you anymore! You always have company.
It’s very important to take care of your body and mind all the time, and self care is just as important (if not even more important) than before. Protecting your well-being is crucial to the development of your little human & having a happy and healthy pregnancy (that you can control).
Yes – it’s hard to be selfish and put you above anything or anyone else. I’ve said it before here, you can’t pour from an empty cup. You will feel much better to be putting you and your little growing baby first. Take the necessary steps (and tips I mention below) to have a less stressful, healthy, and enjoyable pregnancy!
Here are my crucial self care essential tips for pregnancy & even new moms! When the baby is here, don’t forget to keep applying self care in your routine – You deserve it!
1. Manage Your Own Expectations
Give credit where credit is due – you are growing a human! This is the best and hardest thing for you – physically and mentally! It is so important to go easy on yourself & give yourself a break! You can’t do it all and you shouldn’t. Can’t make it to work? Call in sick. Too tired to do the dishes? Go take a nap! It is important to set expectations for yourself because others are already expecting you to just take care of YOU. You are taking care of yourself will in return take care of that growing human. You can’t expect how your pregnancy will go week by week. By setting expectations of what you physically and mentally can manage will help relieve a lot of stress. Even when you just can’t do it all (even if us superhero moms want to!
2. Invest in Yourself
As you read these tips below, keep one thing in the back of your mind: invest in you and baby! If it’s something you need to help make your pregnancy go by smoother, less stressful or easier, then buy it! I lost count how many days or weeks I pushed off getting a specific item I knew would help me. When I caved and got whatever it was, I said immediately “I should have done this sooner!” Times have changed. When I had my first son 11 years ago, they did not have some of the amazing items that they have now. That would have made things much easier on me. If you need it or want it – get it!
3. Rest Up!
We all know that when the baby is here, your sleep is gone. True. The postpartum sleep is practically non-existent. But what about pregnancy sleep? You’re so exhausted throughout the day (typically very high in the first trimester). Then when you actually get to bed, you can’t sleep because of your growing belly and moving baby. Take those extra naps throughout the day when you can’t keep your eyes open. Put your feet up and just relax! Invest in yourself (ahem, told you – tip number two!) – get that pregnancy pillow. I swear by it and most moms do it! Don’t struggle with the little sleep you do get. Make it as comfortable for you as you need it to be.
4. Stay Hydrated
I personally had low blood pressure during pregnancy, and was informed immediately to hydrate more and I did. I invested in a smart water bottle to keep track and remind me when I was low on water. The best thing about it? After a couple days of increasing my water intake, I could feel how much more energy I had! I didn’t feel as sluggish, and my skin was glowing even more. I felt like I was really providing my little growing human with a hydrated home. Being hydrated is very important (whether you are pregnant or not!). This is a must have self care tip for everyone!
5. Nourish Yourself
Have a healthy relationship with food. You’re pregnant. It’s okay to indulge. As you allow your body to have those treats, you build that relationship with your body and it will thank you in the long run. There are many resources to know what foods are best and which ones to avoid with pregnancy. Talk to your doctor and ensure you’re getting the right food daily and nourish that growing human! Remember, you are eating for two – your baby is getting their nutrients directly from you!
6. Keep Moving
As pregnancy is not a one size fits all experience, your ability to keep moving will depend on you and your doctors recommendations. There are a few ways to keep your body moving and stay active during your pregnancy (this will help not only your energy and body development during pregnancy, but will also help when you are ready to deliver that baby!):
Go for a small walk around the block, put on music and dance, kegel exercises, go for a swim (This is magical! Imagine all that weight of the baby being lifted!), light stretching and prenatal yoga!
7. Take Your Prenatals
If you haven’t started taking prenatal vitamins prior to becoming pregnant, start now. Your body needs additional nutrients that may be lacking in your diet that is essential for baby’s growth and development. Talk to your doctor about what you might need to look for specifically in a prenatal vitamin. I have been using these prenatal vitamins for all three pregnancies. They have worked well for me and is was easy to swallow and keep down during the pregnancy nausea.
8. Pamper Yourself
You can’t say “self care” without the idea of pampering yourself behind it. Your body is changing and growing. There are many days where you may feel defeated or not yourself. Let’s be real here. There are ugly sides to pregnancy and I have definitely not felt at my best at times. Enjoy a warm bath with salts like this to help soothe your sore body and relax your mind. Put on some nail polish or get your hair styled differently if you can. Anything that makes you feel like the queen you are – do it! Have an at home spa day and refresh your mind and body.
9. Go Offline
How many times have you had a headache and searched Google and came out scared of the results? Same thing goes especially with pregnancy! I can’t count how many times the doctor has told one one small thing but then what do I do? I Google it. Big mistake. Not everyone will have the same experience as you will. So put down google and if you have concerns – talk to your doctor. As a mom, the comparison game is absolutely brutal and draining. during pregnancy and after. Taking a break from searching and social media will be tremendously helpful to your mental health.
When in doubt, talk it out, whether that is to your doctor, to a trusted family member or friend. It is important to express how you’re feeling during pregnancy. It’s a tough game physically and mentally to grow a beautiful baby, and sometimes, you can feel alone. Communication is key and we have all heard that. Not feeling well? Tell your partner and they can help you around the house. Feeling lonely, FaceTime a family member. You’re valid in your emotional responses to everything going on with you during pregnancy – first time or fifth. A happy mind is a healthy one. Once you express how you are feeling, it will lift a lot of weight off yourself shoulders. Let’s face it – we are carrying around a lot of extra weight (both physically and mentally)
I hope you take these essential tips to self care during pregnancy and adapt them to your everyday life! When you are a new mom, you automatically put others before you. It is important to your health (especially when growing a baby too) to take care of yourself. Best of luck to my 2021 pregnant mommas!
I have teamed up with a few amazing friends that have also shared their Self Care for 2021!
To see what my friends are sharing, head to their accounts and blogs and show some love!