Crush your top pregnancy work worries with these expert tips.
Pregnant women have tons of demands on their time and energy, not the least of which is work. Day-to-day responsibilities seem that much harder when you're also scurrying to a prenatal checkup or trying not to heave because of horrible morning sickness, but everything's about to get mega-manageable: Marjorie Greenfield, M.D., author of The Working Woman's Pregnancy Book, shares smart advice that will keep you on your A game.
Preg Job Prob "I'm really not feeling great." Right now, the entire day can feel like a post-lunch 3 p.m. slump, especially if you're trying to keep your condition on the DL. To combat pregnancy fatigue, take a whiff of peppermint essential oil to make you feel more alert and invigorated. A stash of Ginger People Gin Gin chews and Tums in your desk drawer will help quell nausea and heartburn, respectively. And if you're heading into a big meeting, Greenfield recommends grabbing a seat by the door: you'll be able to dash to the restroom without tripping over colleagues.
Preg Job Prob "I have so many OB appointments." No one enjoys going to the doctor (tests! needles! scales!), but rushing to and fro in the middle of a busy day adds an unnecessary layer of stress. Not only are you concerned about the conspicuousness of being out of the office, but there's also anxiety stemming from wasting time in transit or in the waiting room. The solution? "Try to get the very first appointment in the morning," Greenfield advises. "It's more likely to run on time, which gets you into the office promptly." If that's not possible, aim for the last appointment, so there's less pressure to report back to duty. Still, you can use your waiting-room time to catch up on email, says Greenfield: "We're all so well-connected now; it's not like we're invisible or unreachable if we're not at our desk."
Preg Job Prob "I'm becoming a space case!" "Momnesia" may have been a buzzword a few years ago, but studies have yet to show that carrying a baby actually impairs a woman's thought process, Greenfield says. Still, she's heard countless stories from folks blaming "preggo brain" for a colleague's mistakes. "Most moms-to-be feel they're simply more distracted versus cognitively impaired," she says. Keep fastidious to-do lists using an app that works on both your phone and computer, such as Wunderlist, and for the odd moment you're without either, try this trick: Clench your right hand while going over info you need to remember, then when you want to recall it, repeat the action with your left hand. Research suggests this has helped with retention. It's worth a shot, right?