Congratulations on your pregnancy! Having a little life grow inside you is one of the most fulfilling experiences. Once you find out you’re pregnant, it’s time to celebrate with your loved ones. However, stress in pregnancy is also common for a variety of reasons. Hormonal changes, body aches, nausea, vomiting, and extensive planning can bring a lot of new stress into your life. If you’re feeling stressed out during pregnancy, continue reading to learn about 10 ways to beat stress.
10 Ways to Beat Stress in Pregnancy
Positive support system
Having a positive support system is one of the most important things in a person’s life when it comes to managing stress levels. This is even more important in pregnancy, because your mental health will affect the baby growing inside of you. If you have people in your life who are negative or stress you out frequently, it would be a good idea to keep as much distance from them as possible. Understandably, there may be some people you can’t avoid completely who raise your stress levels high. However, for the negative people you know of that you can avoid, stay clear of them to help you beat stress in pregnancy.
Say good-bye to stress in pregnancy by listening to music
Music is a great way to help you manage stress during pregnancy. I usually don’t recommend specific music genres to people for relaxation, because every person reacts differently. Some people feel relaxed and de-stressed when they listen to soft and slow music. Other people feel their stress melt away when they listen to a hard rock song. You can listen to music in different ways including going to concerts, playing music during a relaxing bubble bath, or working out with your Ipod.
Doing different art projects can help reduce stress in pregnancy. Painting, pottery, and drawing are all fantastic options to help remove distractions, feel relaxed, and de-stress. I once had a supervisor who took one-week vacations every year to paint in natural settings. Whenever she returned to work, she always appeared happier and relaxed. I also love using art to help relieve stress because there is no right or wrong way to do it. You express yourself without judgement. Some mothers I have spoken with love doing pottery, because of how soothing it feels on their hands. It’s a great way to relax and beat stress.
Laughter is one of my favorite stress management techniques. I attended a stand-up comedy show several years ago and found myself laughing throughout the performance. I instantly felt better. If you are pregnant, going to a stand-up comedy show is an option to help you get laughter in and reduce stress. However, there are other options, such as watching comedies on television, hanging out with a funny friend, or reading funny books.
Reduce stress in pregnancy with prenatal yoga
Yoga has been known to have stress management and health benefits. According to the Mayo Clinic, prenatal yoga can help improve your sleep, reduce stress, increase your flexibility, and help reduce lower back pain and nausea. If you’re pregnant, prenatal yoga can be a great way to manage your stress levels in pregnancy. Check with your OG/GYN on prenatal yoga classes he/she may recommend.
Start getting organized
It can feel overwhelming when you need to plan for your baby’s arrival, because there are so many different things to think about and do. However, once you start organizing everything, you can start to beat stress in pregnancy.
One of the things that helped reduced my stress in pregnancy was creating a baby list of essentials and non-essentials. I added my wish list items to my baby registry and purchased the essentials that were not already given to me for gifts. This was one way that helped me get organized, so I wouldn’t need to do a lot of last-minute scrambling once the baby was born.
If you live near the water, try going on a boat ride to help reduce your stress levels in pregnancy. When I was 5 months pregnant, I took a boat ride in San Francisco. Going on a boat ride instantly reduced my stress. I was able to breathe in fresh air, watch the beautiful sights around me, and spend quality time with my partner.
Exercise in water to let go of stress in pregnancy
I first learned about water therapy when I met a physical therapist who told me he teaches physical therapy exercises to patients with different medical conditions and chronic pain. Exercising in the water is a great pain management tool, but it also is a great stress reliever. I tried some of the exercises he taught me in water and it was very relaxing.
Last week, I was trimming and watering my plants in my mini-garden. At the time, I was thinking about how relaxing it felt. Then I thought, “I should have done this while I was pregnant!” Gardening has a lot of benefits, including managing stress. It reduces distractions, helps you stay fit, and gives you the opportunity to spend quality time outdoors. Gardening also helped my stress levels go down, because I was able to look at different and beautiful plants and flowers.
Try something different
When was the last time you tried a new restaurant or tried a new hobby? If you’re feeling stressed during pregnancy, try doing something different to help manage your stress. Check your local listings for meetup groups or classes that you can attend. Examples of different things you can try are:
- Going to an exotic restaurant
- Participating in a new meetup group
- Trying a new hobby, such as sewing
- Attending a cooking class
- Shopping at a clothing store that is different from your typical style
Many mothers needlessly suffer in silence during pregnancy. If you are a new mother with added stresses, know that you are not alone. Pregnancy can be stressful, so be sure to spend time with positive people and take care of yourself. You and your baby deserve it!
Joyce is a mom blogger that writes at Celebrate Moms Forever. She writes about parenting, motherhood, pregnancy, and stress management for moms.