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It’s unfortunate that in this day and age women still receive unequal treatment in the workplace. Often having to work harder for promotions or recognition while also making less than their male counterparts, women have it rough. When you factor pregnancy into the equation, you can imagine things only get worse.

Handling Your Pregnancy

For this reason, many women, become stressed when they find out they’re expecting. They may be afraid of losing their jobs, being overlooked for promotions, or simply poor treatment in the office. At a time when a woman should be celebrating the arrival of her child with a baby gender reveal party, baby shower, or babymoon, she feels compelled to conceal her joy for fear of her career.

At a time when a woman should be celebrating the arrival of her child with a baby gender reveal party, baby shower, or babymoon, she feels compelled to conceal her joy for fear of her career.

Though it’s a shame that this type of treatment still goes on in 2019, there is a way to reduce your anxieties, enjoy your pregnancy, and complete your job like a boss. Here are some suggestions below:

  • Take Care of Your Health: Pregnancy takes your body through a lot of physical and emotional changes. As you are essentially responsible for both your health and the health of your unborn child, it is especially important that you prioritize your health. Make sure that you’re keeping up with doctor’s appointments, following the doctor’s advice, eating well-balanced meals, drinking plenty of water, getting adequate exercise, and resting at least 7 to 9 hours each night. Taking care of your health is not only important for you and the baby but it is essentially how you continue to work efficiently until it is time for you to take leave.
  • Tell Your Employer and Human Resources Right Away: Though there is a grace period in which couples like to wait before sharing the news of their pregnancy, you don’t want to leave your employer in the dark for too long. There may be certain aspects of your job that need to be altered to accommodate your needs, there are also certain rights you have as a pregnant woman in the workplace that secure your job. If your employer is unaware, they are not required to follow those practices.
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  • When you’re comfortable, ask to speak with your employer and/or HR in private. Announce your pregnancy news. If there are any health concerns or accommodations you’ll require to continue working, bring these up in the meeting. Lastly, provide them with your intentions as it pertains to your job. Do you plan on working until you give birth? Do you intend to work part-time hours in your 3rd trimester? Is your plan to return to work after 6 weeks or 3 months? This reduces any anxieties your employers may have had.
  • Celebrate: Now that the news is out about your pregnancy, there is nothing wrong with celebrating this news! This is a joyous occasion and no one should be able to take that away from you. If you want to host an its a boy or its a girl gender reveal party or an eco-friendly baby shower, feel free to do so. The best part is that since the cat is out of the bag, you can invite coworkers that you have grown close to. Getting gender reveal ideas for its a boy or its a girl is very easy! You can find tons of ideas such as mustaches or lashes and footballs or tutu’s.
  • Stay Productive: Though there are good and bad days during pregnancy (especially in the first trimester) it is important for you to maintain productivity in the workplace. Develop systems that make things easier for you to accomplish. If you need assistance (whether it’s picking up a box or completing a presentation before lunch), don’t be afraid to ask. Lastly, if there are things you can do to make working while pregnant more comfortable, try it. For example, if you need to ask for a personal printer so you don’t have to keep getting up and down to go to the copy room, see if that is a request human resources can fill.
  • Plan an Exit Strategy: You can impress your employers (and save yourself a lot of stress when you return) by having an exit strategy. As long as the pregnancy is a healthy one, chances are you have an idea of when you’ll be taking leave. Prior to that time, make sure you have tied up loose ends. Get any coworkers, trainees, or temporary employees up to speed on what needs to be done in your absence. Be sure that you have informed your clients of your leave, and prepare anything in advance that you can to make the transition easier for whoever is going to take over while you’re gone.

Finding out that you’re pregnant when you work in a certain industry or role can be intimidating. Already struggling to be treated as equals you’re not sure of what to expect once your employer finds out you’re expecting. The best thing you can do is educate yourself on your rights during your pregnancy and then educate the plans listed above to ensure these next few months are as stress-free as possible.

Anne Gibson