Realistic New Year’s Resolutions for Expecting Moms
December 16, 2020Are you one of those people who feels like they can conquer the world on January 1 but are burned out by the time March rolls around? Forget the lofty New Year’s resolutions, mama. This year, make the simple things a priority and focus on caring for yourself and your little one on the way.
Make Rest a Priority
Getting more rest isn’t just a feel-good method of self-care. It can actually help you have a healthier pregnancy. Lack of sleep has been linked to a higher risk of pregnancy complications such as preeclampsia, gestational diabetes, more prolonged labor, and higher cesarean section rates, particularly among women who get fewer than six hours of sleep in 24 hours.1
If you want to add more rest to your routine, try setting a bedtime alarm on your smartphone and spending a few extra minutes doing something relaxing, such as listening to soothing music, meditating, practicing mindful breathing, or reading. Remove devices with screens from your bedroom to eliminate the temptation to watch TV or scroll social media before bed. The blue light from these devices is proven to inhibit your body’s production of melatonin, the sleep hormone.2
Exercise Regularly (Even if it’s Just a Little)
“Next year, I’ll go to the gym every day.” Sounds a bit unrealistic, doesn’t it?
Be realistic when it comes to your fitness goals and ability. If going to the gym every day isn’t realistic, don’t push yourself to do it. If going to the gym once a week isn’t realistic, don’t make it your goal. Figure out a way you can add more regular exercise to your lifestyle – and be honest about it. Even if it’s as simple as, “Next year, I will go for a 10-minute walk on Wednesday mornings.”
You can also set a goal for yourself that doesn’t put restrictions on certain days. For instance, if you don’t really like the gym or you don’t want to invest in the financial commitment, but you do want to exercise more, you can make it a goal to try a specific number of online fitness tutorials. For example, “I will make it a goal to watch and follow along with 100 home exercise videos on YouTube.”
Try a New Hobby
Don’t get so wrapped up in maintaining a healthy pregnancy that you forget to provide for your own emotional and personal growth. One way to keep yourself entertained and mentally stimulated is to try a new hobby. Make it a resolution to try something you’ve always been curious about but never actually attempted, or to pick up a hobby that interests you. If you try it and find out that it’s not your thing, you’ll know you at least gave it a shot and probably learned something new. If you’re intimidated about dipping your toes into new territory, get a friend to try it with you. Here are a few ideas:
- Take a beginner’s art class. Creating art can be soothing, cathartic, and even therapeutic. And by the way, scientists have found a possible link between motherhood and higher levels of creativity.3 You may not even need to invest in supplies. Most intro art classes include the cost of everything you’ll need in their sign-up fees.
- Try being your own boss. If you’ve got a few extra bucks and have always wanted to start your own small-scale business, now might be a good time to give it a shot! You could try starting a cottage business where you make something in your home and sell it online, but don’t get in over your head. If you aren’t crafty, you could try joining a direct sales or multilevel marketing company such as Mary Kay, Usborne Books, or Pampered Chef, where someone else makes the products, and you simply sell them from the comfort of home. Although working with these companies probably won’t make you rich, it can be a fun hobby that helps you earn a little extra money. At the very least, you’ll get a discount on their products.
- Learn a new skill. If you’ve ever said to yourself, “I really wish I knew how to_____,” well, what are you waiting for? Want to learn how to sew? Or speak a new language? Or maybe master hand lettering or calligraphy? The internet is an endless library of virtual information. All you need is a healthy curiosity and a Wi-Fi connection.
Treat Yourself to a Mom-to-Be Makeover
With coronavirus still persisting, political and social unrest, and economic woes, 2021 will likely go down in the books as one of the most challenging years in recent history. If 2021 has taken its toll on you (or even if it hasn’t), one resolution that may be easy to keep is to treat yourself to a mommy makeover. It’s no surprise that hormonal changes, physical changes, and changes in how you feel during pregnancy can affect your emotional well-being. Your body is changing, and you may feel tired more frequently. You might have new features you’re not crazy about, like stretch marks or hemorrhoids. Use the new year to promote a new you – with a customized plan to help you look and feel your best. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Amp up your hair care. Schedule a professional cut and style and invest in some quality hair care products. You might have noticed your hair looking and feeling thicker than usual since you got pregnant. Why not take advantage of the situation and flaunt what you’ve got?
- Get a facial. Basic facials (without lasers, electric currents, or harsh chemicals) are generally considered safe during pregnancy. Plus, they can help alleviate skin issues that are commonly associated with pregnancy such as dry skin, acne, or puffiness.4 Don’t feel like going to the spa? Save time and money by pampering yourself at home! Here’s a list of easy to make face masks using ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen: https://www.thehealthy.com/beauty/face-body-care/homemade-facial-masks-recipes/.
- Put together an awesome maternity outfit. Treat yourself to a gorgeous new maternity gown, some cute accessories, and maybe a sexy lingerie set. Yes, you can still wear lingerie when pregnant – and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise! Get some inspiration from thebump.com: https://www.thebump.com/a/best-maternity-lingerie
Staying healthy throughout your pregnancy should always be the most important resolution, but looking and feeling great can certainly contribute to your overall well-being and pregnancy experience. Don’t forget to discuss any concerns with your doctor and take good care of yourself in 2022!
Prenate® Vitamin Family
This post is sponsored by the Prenate® Vitamin Family, a line of prescription prenatal supplements designed to enhance preconception, prenatal, and postpartum nutrition in women. Talk with your doctor about how taking a daily prescription prenatal or postnatal vitamin could help support a healthy pregnancy and postpartum wellness.