When you’re a new mom, your life is all wrapped up in taking care of your new little family member. But it’s important for new moms to take some time to focus on themselves. A healthy mom is a happy mom, so be sure to take care of yourself even when it seems impossible to do so. Here are 10 ways to sneak in time just for you.
Why Self Care Is Important as a New Mom
The changes that occur after childbirth can be overwhelming both physically and mentally. When you reserve time for yourself, you’ll feel more rejuvenated and more capable of taking care of the tiny baby who is relying on you to survive and thrive.
Taking Care of Your Mental Health
In addition to taking time to eat healthy meals and keep yourself clean, it’s also important to take your mental health into account. You can do this by practicing meditation and relaxation techniques, connecting with others and getting sufficient sleep (when possible!)
Here are 10 easy ways to sneak in some alone time so you can feel rejuvenated and ready to return to your motherly responsibilities.
- Give yourself a quick foot rub whenever your feet feel achy and tired.
- Sit down and take five deep breaths. Hold each breath for three seconds before exhaling for three seconds.
- Learn how to say no when people ask you to do things you can’t handle. As a new mom, you have every right to turn down volunteer opportunities, requests for help with local events, and other things you don’t have the time or energy to do.
- Talk to people. Being a new mom can be very stressful, and it can help to get your feelings out. Be sure to talk to friends and family members about what you’re going through. They will most likely step up to help you out however they can.
- Stretch daily. Stretching can release pent-up tension and help you feel more relaxed and invigorated. You can stretch while Baby enjoys tummy time next to you.
- Write down your frustrations if you don’t want to burden others. While it’s great to talk to people who care about you, there may be times when you feel so frustrated and so sleep-deprived that you don’t want to dump all your problems on others. In those times, it can help to write down everything you’re feeling. Just getting the words out of you can be therapeutic.
- Smell flowers. Studies show a link between indoor plants and improved mental health, so be sure to buy or pick some fresh flowers and display them in a prominent place in your home.
- Give yourself daily affirmations. It’s easy for new moms to be hard on themselves, but it’s important to remember that no one is perfect and you’re doing great. Repeat positive affirmations each day to boost your mental health.
- Eat healthy meals. It’s easy to snack on unhealthy junk food when you don’t feel like cooking. But keep in mind that you can keep things simple and still be healthy. Start with small steps, such as snacking on celery sticks instead of chips or replacing cold cereal with oatmeal. You’ll feel better when you take care of your body.
- Get a babysitter. Really, it’s OK to leave your baby sometimes to go to dinner with your spouse or hang out with a friend.
Caring for Yourself & Baby After a C-Section
After a C-section, it’s important to follow your doctor’s instructions carefully. You will likely need someone with you at all times in the days following your C-section so you don’t have to lift your baby or anything heavy.