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How to Navigate Your Career During Pregnancy

Expecting a baby is one of the most exciting times in a couple’s life. However, moms-to-be who are working while pregnant may feel some additional stress about how the new addition will impact their employment situation. But, when handled correctly, announcing a pregnancy should have no impact on how that person is viewed at work, or their ability to do their job. If you’re going to break the big news soon, keep these tips in mind:

Make the announcement carefully

Blurting out a pregnancy announcement in the middle of the break room may feel like the best way to let everyone in on your excitement, but this could ruffle some feathers. Instead, go directly to your boss first. They should hear the news from you as soon as possible, and shouldn’t have to find out after everyone else is already excitedly planning your baby shower and talking about names.

Though it may seem scary to go to your boss with this news, it’s a necessary part of preserving your reputation in the office. Schedule a time to chat, and then reveal that you’re pregnant. Let the manager know when you’re due, but don’t immediately launch into plans about maternity leave. Those details can come later on.

Also, do not get too personal during this discussion. While announcing a pregnancy is exciting, save the ultrasound pictures and thoughts on baby names for your family members and close friends. Keep your boss on a “need to know” basis.

Learn how to manage appointments

Pregnancy can feel like a full-time job when you factor in the various doctor’s appointments necessary to keep you and the baby healthy. However, if you use your time wisely, you should be able to take care of your health without dropping the ball at work. Plan appointments for your lunch break. If you know they’ll be extra long or that this doctor typically runs late, schedule them before or after work.

If you do find that heading to the doctor frequently is causing you to fall behind at work, come prepared for the waiting room. Instead of staring mindlessly at the TV as you wait to get seen, bring work to do. This keeps you productive and on schedule, without causing you to risk your health.

Help your colleagues adjust to your absence

Handle your maternity leave carefully and with your colleague’s needs in mind. If you just disappear for six weeks and leave no indication about when you’ll be back or what needs to be taken care of in your absence, you’re leaving your co-workers in a tough spot. Instead, carefully map out all of your projects (both long and short-term), and daily tasks. This helps your replacement to make the transition seamless, without irritating clients or other members of the staff.

With careful preparation and plenty of communication, your pregnancy will allow you to continue working and enjoying a career without sacrificing your health to do it.

How did you navigate your pregnancy while working?

Lauren Levine

Lauren Levine is a copywriter/blogger who contributes to a number of magazines and websites including The Frisky, USA Today, and others. She also authors her own blog called Life with Lauren. She loves cooking, anything on the E! network, and is trying to convince herself that running isn't so bad.