7 Tips to Reduce Stress when Trying to Conceive

Eloise Edington  |   14 Feb 2022

There’s no denying that trying to conceive is stressful and the more difficulties we have, the more stressed we become and the harder it gets to fall pregnant.

It’s a vicious cycle and so many people in our community ask us: how can I reduce stress when I’m trying to conceive?

The Fertility Help Hub team have all been through our own fertility journeys so here are our top tips to reduce stress when trying to conceive.

Words by Holly Pigache

1) Find Your Support Network

Your partner, a good friend, your parent(s), a counsellor, strangers going through it… there are many people to support you when you’re trying to get pregnant.  (In)fertility can feel like a lonely journey but you’re not alone.

  • Find supportive communities online (like the FHH Instagram)
  • Join a community of caring people who’ve been through it or are currently going through it (like our free Fertility Squad app)

If you’re going through fertility treatment and feel like you’re not getting the support you need from friends and family, speak with your fertility clinic as they’ll have connections with fertility counsellors and experts you can talk to.

2) Disconnect From Social Media

For all the positives of social media (re-connecting old friends, seeing life updates from loved ones, sparking new relationships), we’re all aware of the dangers of social media.  It can easily become a platform for gloating and it’s important to remember that social media life is often only one side of life.  Scrolling through and seeing pregnancy announcements can be really tough and our guide to healthy social media usage when TTC will help.  Remember it’s okay to unfollow friends if they’re posting about their pregnancy every day (but it’s kind to let them know and explain why), leave those groups that have become swamped in fertility fretting or pregnancy panic and if you feel you need to come off social media altogether, that’s okay, too.

If you’re based in the US, benefit from 15% off Beli supplements by using code FHH15 at checkout here.

3) Healthy Body, Healthy Mind

Eat well and ensure your diet is fertility-friendly.  Quit smoking, stop or seriously reduce alcohol intake, eat fertility-friendly foods, bursting with colour, reduce or ideally avoid inflammatory foods – especially processed foods, refined sugar and vegetable oils.  Nutritionist Jen Walpole (visit her website here) advises sticking to a Mediterranean diet when trying to get pregnant and following her recommended daily intake (read about it here) can help with IVF success.

For men and women TTC, it’s also important to make sure you’re taking high-quality supplements specifically designed for men or women.  Beli Women Prenatal multivitamins contain everything a woman needs when TTC; targeted nutrients decrease the chances of miscarriage, trigger ovulation, improve egg quality and boost the chances of conception.  Beli Vitality for Men contains all the nutrients men need to boost sperm count, motility and morphology and increase fertilisation rates.

When you’re TTC, men and women benefit from regular, moderate exercise.  High-intensity exercises heat up the testicles, harming sperm health and exercises like cycling can also inflict trauma upon the testicles – not ideal for optimal sperm quality.

The best exercises for when you’re trying to conceive include:

Read more about the exercises recommended for people TTC naturally or going through fertility treatment here.

Looking after your body will care for your mind, too.  By eating well, taking the best fertility supplements and exercising moderately, you’re more likely to have a positive mental attitude about trying to conceive and coping with setbacks.

4) Be Kind to Yourself (and Your Partner)

If you’re going through fertility treatment as a solo parent by choice, show yourself some compassion.  Do the things that make you happy, spend time with people who feel like sunshine and try to focus on the positives.

If you’re TTC naturally or going through fertility treatment with a partner, look after one another as well as yourself.  Whilst the struggle to conceive is something you might share, you’ll each experience different emotions and it’s important to work together not against one another during this trying time.  It’s easier said than done, but try not to schedule sex too much or become obsessed with ovulation tracking – this adds to the stress of trying to get pregnant.  Partners can look after each other in different ways, so maintain open communication and work out ways to support one another.

5) Try Not to Focus on Other People’s Stories

Ruminating about how it seemed to take no time at all for a friend to get pregnant won’t help your stress levels, nor will being caught up in another friend’s fertility struggles.  Of course, it’s important to be a supportive friend, but if you’re finding their fertility anxiety is causing you more angst, speak kindly and honestly with them – your friend might be feeling the same way!

Similarly, if it seems all your friends are settling down and having children but you don’t feel ready yet, try not to be swayed by the life stages of your friends; make decisions that are right for you.

6) Think About How Much You Want to Share

If you’re an open book and want to share everything with your friend(s), be mindful that they might be going through fertility struggles and not want to know all the details of your fertility journey.  Also be aware that telling your friends everything can set an expectation and if you stop telling them about every cycle, they may ask each month.

7) Focus on the Small Things

Worrying about the end goal of getting a Big Fat Positive (BFP) can be all-consuming and overwhelming.  At times, it can help to focus on smaller, more achievable steps: cut out alcohol from this week, next week also join a gentle yoga class, the following week also try to have a diet that is more fertility-friendly.  Breaking a goal into short-term tasks will help you focus on the positive steps you’re taking to boost fertility and get pregnant.

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