Keeping a journal during pregnancy has many benefits for a mother-to-be and her baby. A journal provides a record of this sacred time that can be treasured for life. Journaling gives you a safe place to express your feelings, set your intentions, express gratitude, and connect with your baby.
It’s never too late to get started. Whether newly pregnant or close to your due date, a journal can benefit a pregnant woman and is a practice that I recommend keeping up throughout your lifetime.
Here are my seven tips for keeping a pregnancy journal.
1. Get a Journal
Choose an attractive notebook or a specially designed pregnancy journal. If you are a visual person you can decorate your journal by drawing or cutting out baby related images. If you’ve had an ultrasound you may want to use the image of the scan on the cover.
2. Decide on a regular time for writing
Decide on a time that works best for you to journal and make it a habit to do your writing at that time every day. If you feel overwhelmed by writing every day, you might choose to write every second day, or once a week. Keep your journal nearby so you can write in it at any time that you feel inspired.
3. Write about your feelings
A journal provides you with a safe place to write about your feelings. You can start your journal by freely expressing what is on your mind. When you take the time to ‘debrief’ about the day’s events, things that you have had in your subconscious mind tend to come to the surface. This is great; it means that your conscious mind can deal with the challenges you are facing. You can make decisions and choices based on what you want, not on what your subconscious mind is in the habit of doing.
4. Record what’s happening in your body
Keeping a record of the changes that your body is going through during pregnancy can help you in many ways. If you have additional pregnancies you can refer to your journal to see what you felt last time around and what you did to alleviate some of your discomforts. It also reminds you that you’ve already survived at least some of the things you’re going through now so you will be reminded of your strength.
Keeping track of what’s happening in your body can give you perspective. We tend to use the words ‘always’ and ‘never’ when in truth, we are not ‘always’ or ‘never’ feeling a certain way. For example, you may feel like you are ‘always’ tired, but your journal may indicate that you feel a burst of energy every day after breakfast. Now that you know this, you can start to schedule things that require more energy during that time period.
5. Express your intentions
Have you taken the time to think about what you would like your pregnancy to be like, or have you just learned what pregnancy is supposed to be like? Chances are you have had many expectations of what pregnancy is like from watching TV, movies, and talking to other women. Our culture tends to focus on the negative aspects of pregnancy. When we expect pregnancy to be miserable, we are setting ourselves up to experience a miserable pregnancy.
Take some time to focus on how you would like to experience your pregnancy. One way to do this is to write positive affirmations. Affirmations are positive statements that you write in the present tense, as if you are already experiencing what you would like to have in your life. Always focus on what you do want, not on what you don’t want. For example, if you’re feeling sick and miserable you could affirm “I choose to have a healthy, happy pregnancy.” You should not affirm “I don’t feel sick and miserable” because your subconscious will weed out the ‘don’t’ and will focus on the ‘sick and miserable’. It doesn’t matter if you don’t believe your affirmations at first. With repetition and focus, affirmations can help you attain a positive mindset.
Some more examples of affirmations are:
“I am confident, strong, joyful, and at peace during my pregnancy”
“I enjoy being pregnant”
“I exercise in ways that are healthy for me and my baby”
“I have the love and support of my family and friends during this pregnancy”
6. Express your gratitude
Expressing gratitude each day will help focus your mind on the good things in your life. To start with, write down three things you are grateful for. You may be surprised at how many things you are able to list once you focus on the positives. You don’t need to find something significant to be grateful for. It could be as simple as “I am grateful that my favourite pair of maternity pants was clean today”. The more ‘little things’ you give thanks for, the more you will notice the good in your life.
7. Connect with your baby
Writing to your baby is a beautiful way to connect before your baby is born. You can share what you’ve written when your child is old enough to appreciate it. Some ideas for writing to your baby include:
Remember, there is no right or wrong way to keep a journal, so just get started! Taking the time to journal during pregnancy will get you into a good habit of taking time for yourself, which is something that you will value through your pregnancy and into motherhood.
Keep up to date with changes and updates with newsletter via email . Contests, new articles and much more!