parents taking toddler and baby for a walk
dads & mums

the parents’ guide to unwinding during pregnancy

2 minutes

Relaxing during pregnancy is often easier said than done. Because, as much as you may love the idea of soaking in a warm bath before getting an early night, trying to fit that in amongst work, family duties, domestic chores and… well, life in general, can be hard.

‘I was racing around so much during my third pregnancy, I genuinely kept forgetting I was pregnant,’ says Shona, mum to Rosie, Ben and Lily. ‘I had work, two young children and due to some bad planning, we were moving house too. Life in general involves a lot of spinning plates and pregnancy just adds another into the mix. Every now and again I would feel guilty and remind myself I should probably be taking it a bit easier, for the sake of the baby, but it wasn’t as if I could just “drop” my responsibilities.’

Unwinding is an important part of pregnancy, but that doesn’t mean you should ever worry that you’re ‘failing’ at it. If it’s difficult to put aside much ‘me’ time, try to incorporate little bits during the day.

Easy ‘me’ time

‘I was a bit cynical about meditating but a few of my friends recommended it and so I gave it a go during pregnancy as I was feeling more frazzled than I liked,’ says Leo, parent to Rocco, 3. ‘I used a meditation app for 10 minutes a day and really felt my mind quietening down and my thoughts becoming clearer.’

If you fancy trying your hand (or head?) at meditation or pregnancy yoga, why not look into some local classes? And don’t forget, sometimes it is the little things that can have the most impact, so celebrate the small victories - a quiet cup of tea to yourself, settling down to a good book rather than scrolling through your work emails, strolling round the park and spending quality time with friends.

Getting enough rest is crucial to feeling positive, so don’t feel guilty about taking yourself off to bed early and having a lie-in if you can, and asking for some practical help from friends and family. After all, during one of the most unique times in your life, where you mind and body are undergoing enormous change, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with putting yourself first.

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