For many women, excelling in the professional realm means gracefully balancing motherhood with proper planning at work. Get started with your plans as soon as your pregnancy is confirmed. This will help you set the stage for a smooth future through each stage of the experience. Read more to learn some helpful tips on how to manage a full-time job during pregnancy.
Breaking The News
- Even if you’ve already decided to tell your friends and family, it’s often best to wait until your second trimester to announce the news at work.
- Gather as much information as you can from your doctor about when you might need to start maternity leave. If you’ve been pregnant before and were put on bed rest or otherwise had to start your leave earlier than expected, be prepared to discuss this with management.
- Start by telling your direct supervisor and management in a closed-door meeting. If you’d like, you can ask them to keep the news confidential. Otherwise, give them permission to share with the whole team.
- Confirm details of the company’s maternity leave policy ASAP. Ideally you should do this before the meeting. Share your expected timeline and, if your employer isn’t being flexible or is showing signs of frustration with the news, make it clear that you know your rights as a working mother in your state. In most states, this does not include mandated paid time off. But it does often mean that you can’t be fired. Know that some employers are quite selfish with this kind of news and will even try to break the law. That does not mean you’re wrong. They are.
- Update your employers or managers every month or so with how your pregnancy is progressing . This includes if your expected due date changes or it’s seeming likely that you’ll be on bed rest, when you may need to take time off.
Taking Care of Yourself and Your Little One
- Stay connected to your body and be mindful of what your hormones are up to. If you’re experiencing nausea at a certain time of day, bring ginger ale or anti-nausea medication to work. This way, you can fight those yucky feelings. Wear comfortable shoes and ask your employer to temporarily relax the dress code if your comfy shoes don’t match.
- Schedule appointments around your work schedule as much as possible. This is even if everyone at work is being super supportive. If your direct management isn’t being understanding of your completely reasonable need to take time off for doctor’s check-ups, consider talking with their higher-ups.
After you welcome your new baby to the world, be prepared to wear compression garments and ask for permission to extend your maternity leave if you won’t be able to perform your regular job duties due to doctor’s orders. If you’ve already planned and prepped your work crew before your left for leave, a few extra days off shouldn’t be a big deal.