The surrogacy journey is exciting, but it’s not without its stressful moments. A surrogate is balancing her normal duties and responsibilities alongside the pregnancy. Intended parents are also busy preparing, and are likely anxiously awaiting every milestone and appointment, just to hear everything is progressing normally. While all these feelings are completely natural, it’s possible to eliminate some of the stress and anxiety. In fact, using the techniques discussed here can have a positive impact on the pregnancy, and will help keep everyone working together as a team.

  1. Acknowledge and Anticipate Stressors

The first steps to managing stress is to acknowledge its presence, discover its root, and anticipate things that may trigger it. It’s easier to tackle some things head-on. For instance, if you’re worried about variables, talk with the other parties or your surrogacy agency about them. Any of your concerns can be documented in the contract, so it’s taken care of before it has a chance to become a sticking point. You may also find your anxiety rising just before appointments and milestones. Even though you can’t change the situation, you can find ways to cope with it ahead of time.

  1. Take Care of Yourself and Enjoy Life

It’s difficult to manage any kind of stress if your body doesn’t have what it needs to perform well. Things that might ordinarily roll off your back can shake you to your core if you’ve been missing sleep. Be sure to follow a routine, to make sure you’re getting the sleep, nutrition, and exercise that your body needs. It’s also important to take time out to do things that you enjoy because it will improve your outlook and set you at ease.

  1. Try Various Relaxation Methods

There are many relaxation methods that can help keep you calm and focused during the surrogacy journey. Try several of them, and go with the ones that work best for you.

Affirmations: Remind yourself of the positive things in your life and of the good things you are doing.

Meditation: Even five minutes can help. Mediation is often cited as the number-one stress-buster.

Breathing Exercises: Focus on pulling oxygen deep into your lungs for a few minutes.

Join a Support Group: Joining a surrogacy support group gives you an outlet for emotions among people who understand. Ask your agency for recommendations.

Exercise: Light exercise, like walking or yoga, can make you feel better and help you sleep more soundly, too.

Shoulder Shrugs or Stretches: Focus on how good it feels to stretch your muscles, and envision the stress rolling off your shoulders.

Take a Bath: A warm bath and some quiet time to reflect can work wonders.

Laugh: Do something that makes you laugh, whether it’s going out with friends, watching a funny movie, or just looking at silly photos online.

Distract: Sometimes the best thing to do is to draw your attention away from what’s bothering you. Find a task that will keep your mind busy.

Your feelings are absolutely normal, and they will pass as you progress on the surrogacy journey. However, that doesn’t mean you have to live with anxiety and stress. Try these simple techniques and find one that works, so you can enjoy the moment.