Simple Self-Care Tips For Young Moms
Becoming a mother is a life-altering experience. Of course, it changes you physically, but it also has several psychological impacts on your mind. Carrying the child for nine months and delivering your baby after hours of pain is one part of the journey. And trust me, that is the natural part. The post-pregnancy period is one of the most exhaustive yet enriching phases of a young mom’s life. Your days revolve around the little one.
Motherhood brings with it a whole new set of activities. Regular feeding, cleaning, diaper changes take the better part of your routine. Your responsibilities grow with the child- it is a never-ending job! For first-time moms, this can get very overwhelming. Don’t ignore your mental and physical health amidst all this tumult. Here are some useful yet straightforward self-care tips that you can follow.
Pregnancy cravings are common, but what post-natal indulgence? Self-care is about treating your body right. New moms have to be very careful with their diet as it has a direct impact on the baby. The infant gets its nutrition from the mother’s breast milk. Eating spicy oily food changes the consistency of the fluid causing indigestion and gas problems. Also, hogging on unhealthy food makes you sluggish and prone to ailments. Consult your doctor and religiously follow the diet chart they prescribe. Fresh fruits, green veggies, lentils, protein and dairy products are suitable for your body.
Work on your body
You put on significant weight during pregnancy and its very difficult to shed these extra kilos. Young mothers might experience body insecurity in the post-pregnancy months. Getting back in shape is not a way to seek validation from others. Instead, it is a form of self-love where you learn to appreciate and value your body. Don’t try to lose weight only to impress other people. Do it to reclaim your desirability. Follow an exercise routine, practice meditation and yoga. It is a holistic way to empower yourself and feel more confident in your skin.
Learn a new skill
Motherhood barely leaves you with any time on your hands. With age, however, the child’s dependence on the mother lessens considerably. Why not learn a new skill in these hours that you have to spare? Complete an online course, get a diploma, apply for a part-time job, becoming a mother should never hold you back. Get back to building your career. There are multiple online portals where you can get affordable, credible courses and certifications. You are never too old to learn something new!
Journal your experience
Keeping a journal is one of the best ways to battle stress and stay organised. Record all your day to day experiences and feelings in a diary. If you have a creative streak, then express your emotions via painting or poetry. It is a great way to unwind after a hectic day. Plus, keeping a journal also keeps you more grounded. You can manage your time in a much better idea than before. Set practical goals and reward yourself with every accomplishment.
This is one of the essential pieces of advice that I can give you. Young mothers get so busy with their babies and their familial responsibilities that they forget about the other bonds. Reach out to your close friends and loved ones. Stay connected with people who support you when things get tough. Positive relationships are rare, hold on to them. Make consistent efforts to cherish these bonds. You have a life outside of household chores as well.
Also, think about ways to rebuild your career. Enroll for online classes, get certificate courses, apply for part-time jobs. There are multiple remote earning opportunities for young women fresh out of university. Financial independence is empowering.
Cut some slack
It is important to cut some slack and let your hair down every once a while. Go out on romantic dates, have sleepovers, splurge- you deserve it! You are not battling against the world. Stop trying to please everyone. Also, learn when to say no and block out ill-intentional advice. Everyone out there will try to tell you how to do things. There are several who would find faults with whatever you do. Learn to ignore the negativity in your life and go about your day. Practising self-love is easier said than done. But over time, you learn to accept and appreciate yourself.
Ask for help
As a young mother, you have little to no experience of taking care of the baby. And your motherly instincts can only get you so far. It is always better to ask for help when things get a bit too much to handle. This is where your friends and family come into the picture. There is nothing wrong in asking for a little help when things get hectic for you. Reach out to a professional if you’re feeling down in the dumps. Here is a case study on the diagnosis of depression for more information. Also, learn to rely on your partner to take charge of some responsibilities as well. Raising the child is a shared responsibility. You don’t have to do everything by yourself.
Talk it out
Young mothers rarely have the time to think about their mental well-being. Taking care of the baby takes most of its energy. Postpartum depression, PTSD and other psychological disorders are more common than you think. The pain of labour is so traumatic for some women that they cannot feel the joys of motherhood later. Some mothers are unable to develop maternal feelings for their baby right away. This leads to a tremendous amount of guilt and pressure on their psyche. If you are suffering from anxiety or know someone who’s battling depression, then get help ASAP. Vulnerability is never a weakness.
Have some me-time
Make it a point to spend an hour or two every day in your own company. Taking care of the baby is a tiring job. There will be times when you have to compromise on your comfort and desires. However, don’t make it a regular habit. It is not selfish to want some privacy and space in the house. It can be something as mundane as reading a book in a quiet corner or watching a late-night chick flick. Spend a day at the spa, head out for a walk, go party if you want to! Hire a nanny or a babysitter. You don’t have to confine yourself inside the house all day.
The bottom line
It is entirely natural for young mothers to feel scared. You don’t want your little one to come to any harm. However, you need to understand that there is no checklist to be a good mother. You won’t find a rulebook that has all the instructions to deal with an emergency. You try, make mistakes and learn from them. Don’t be too hard on yourself, and you’re doing the best you can. And it is okay to want a break. It is okay if you’re going to be in bed all day and eat junk food. You deserve a break.