7 Steps To Reducing Baby Shower Overwhelm (and have an event you actually want to be at!)
Baby Showers are fun right?! Well, that depends on who you ask. Some people couldn't think of anything worse. Others feel that pregnancy calls for the biggest shower with all the games, all the food and all the people. And you know what, however you feel about them... it's totally okay.
For some people though the baby shower (or possibly the lack of) can cause stress, overwhelm and heart ache. This can often come from others having a lot of opinion and thoughts about what kind of Shower you should be having and forget that the Baby Shower is meant to be about what makes your heart happy.
Now, I do want to point out that in the vast majority of cases these people do mean well, and they do want the best for you but their excitement about your pregnancy and baby leads to forgetting to stop and ask you what you want.
Overwhelm can also happen if you, as the pregnant one, take on the societal ideas of what you "should" have for a baby shower, and so you feel an internal pressure to keep up with this (often unrealistic) image of what a Baby Shower should be.
That's why I thought I'd share my 7 steps for reducing the overwhelm and having an event you actually want to be at.
1. Stop to think about what you want.
Before you say yes to others' ideas of what type and size Baby Shower they're suggesting (and that includes Pinterests ideas!) stop and have a think about what you really want.
Maybe you don't want one at all. Maybe you want just a few people for lunch. Maybe you want the whole shebang with all the trimmings. Maybe you want your partner and other men too instead of the traditional female only event. Whatever it is that will make your heart happy, choose that and stick with it.
2. Set boundaries before it gets organised.
Before you or others jump in to organising your Shower, think about the details and decide on your boundaries so that once the organising starts it makes it easier for you to feel confident about your decisions. This could include guest list, type of location (for example, at home, a restaurant, park and so on), length of time it will go for and the date it's held.
This doesn't mean you need to go into control mode and take over all decisions, but knowing roughly what you do and don't want first will take the pressure off you.
3. If someone else is organising it, pick someone that will respect and enforce your boundaries.
Having someone organise your Baby Shower can be great. It means you can let them know what you want and then sit back and relax. However, it's really important to choose someone who is going to listen to your decisions and enforce them for you.
For my second baby, my sister organised mine. I went through these steps and I knew that if anyone was concerned about my choices she would respect my wishes and share these with others (in a kind way!)
And don't discount professionals either. There are heaps of hire companies and event planners that take the process on board and this might be the least stressful way for the Shower to happen.
4. Let close people to you know how you're feeling and let them help you with strategies.
If you are feeling overwhelmed by the idea of the Baby Shower, don't keep this to yourself. Anxiety is pregnancy is real, and it can worsen if you don't nurture yourself and allow support in your life.
Have a chat the people closest to you about what's worrying you and ask them to help you with some strategies to lesson it. That could mean delegating more tasks, having that person become a buffer between you and your guests, scaling back the Event.
And if it's really needed, it's okay to cancel the event. Ask yourself again if this is important to you or not. And, if your mental health needs are outweighing the need for a Shower, then don't worry what anyone else thinks. Your health is the most important thing.
5. When you're asked/ expected to go outside your boundaries- stay firm!
Here's the thing with boundaries. People will push them. It's human nature. However, respecting your own boundaries is important otherwise you'll be the one feeling resentful and you won't enjoy the day.
I find the easiest way to figure out what to say no to is by asking yourself "is this something I really care about?" For example, if someone really wants to get extra balloons, is that something that will impact you and your day? If yes, then stay firm. If not, then it's okay to let that go.
6. Shower the people around you with gratitude for giving you the type of shower you wanted.
One way to encourage people to follow your wishes is to show them how happy you are and how grateful you are that you have people around you that love you. Try things like "Thank you so much for understanding that I wanted my partner at the shower. I'm so grateful to have you around me." or "I know this isn't the Shower you'd choose so I really appreciate that you're putting that aside for me."
Sometimes people just need to hear gratitude and see how happy you are when your wishes are respected.
7. Take a breathe and enjoy having others get excited for you and your baby.
Once you've go through all of the above steps all that is left to do it take a breathe and enjoy the Shower that's been created (or lack of Shower if that's what you choose!)
Not everything will go to plan, because life isn't like that, and that's okay. In the end the important thing is that you're having a baby! Congratulations!
I hope this guide has helped. If you happen to choose a beach themed Shower don't forget to grab your Mother and Sun Beachwear so that you're looking gorgeous on the day.