Is pregnancy really an excuse for behaving badly? I’ve written about my not-so-sweet demeanor during my last pregnancy. It wasn’t exactly my proudest nine months. I’ve resolved to be a better pregnant mom the next time around when it comes to the way I treat my family, more specifically my husband. But how can we put those goals into practice when our hormones are raging? What are some practical things we can do to rise above our crummy, snippy moods that seem to settle in with the rest of the pregnancy symptoms?
They say the first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem, and that’s probably never more true than when you’re dealing with pregnancy mood swings. The last thing you want to do is tell yourself (or your family) that you don’t have a problem.
Be proactive by starting each day right. Prayer, reflection, and exercise are all things that can help clear your mind and prepare you to handle daily stress. Eating a good breakfast can also make a big difference by giving you the energy that you need to get through your morning.
Keep some chocolate or another favorite sweet in your purse for those moments when you feel stressed and about to snap at someone. Instead of yelling at the incompetent server, close your eyes for a moment, count to ten and pop your sweet in your mouth. Savor it and let the urge to “let it rip” slip away.
Make a list of nice things you would like to do for the people in your life. As silly as it sounds, purposely doing kind acts towards those around you has great power to change your mood and it will also soften the blow when you do let a harsh word slip.
Remember H.A.L.T. If you are hungry, angry, lonely or tired, you are more likely to slip back into the negative behavior you’re trying to avoid. Always have a snack, take plenty of naps, have a friend on call for when you’re upset, and surround yourself with people who uplift and encourage you. Hanging out with other pregnant women can be especially helpful so you don’t feel like you are the only one suffering from mood swings and other pregnancy aches and pains.