📸 Credit: Kohei Hara
Calling all Mamas out there! We know living stress-free during pregnancy can be difficult, and when your first child comes into the world it can feel seemingly impossible to prioritize yourself. Between sleepless nights and navigating new territories of your life, being a first-time mom can be a beautiful, yet overwhelming venture.
Self-care for new moms is extremely important, yet even more challenging to achieve when you’re busy with a newborn navigating such radical lifestyle changes. We hear you loud and clear and are here for you every step of the way.
Now let’s get to the fun part! Here are our best tips for new moms struggling with stress relief:
- Exercise Regularly
Exercise is proven to do wonders for your mental health and alleviate stress and anxiety. Easier said than done, right? If you’re too overwhelmed by setting aside time for a good old-fashioned trip to the gym, try short exercises spread throughout the day, postpartum HIIT workouts, or simply going on walks. Taking your new child out on a jog in his or her stroller can also be a refreshing addition to your daily routine; just be warned—doctors recommend only doing so when your child has reached 6 months old. Plus, your cute baby will be sure to brighten any neighbor’s day!
Regular exercise can boost antioxidants and collagen production, which leads to healthier skin; coupling this with a belly butter or stretch mark oil, can be a great way to reduce pregnancy stretch marks and empower new moms to feel confident in their skin! It can also help you sleep better at the end of the day and alleviate tension (truly a win-win!).
P.S. That “new mommy glow” may feel like a complete myth to many women, but can also stem from unbridled confidence and self-love.
- Maintain a Healthy Diet and Hydrate
Making an effort to maintain a healthy diet and drink plenty of water should never be underestimated when it comes to improving energy and overall wellbeing. We all know energy is in high demand as a parent. As a new mama, you might have an unwavering urge to resort to caffeine to help survive the often restless duties of motherhood, but water is a great alternative to stay energized. An added bonus is that water leads to lower levels of cortisol, less stress, and can also naturally aid in a maternity skincare routine.
It can be easy to throw something together for dinners or resort to fast food as a new parent, but making the effort to cook healthy meals and make mealtime more relaxed can help you decompress at the end of the day. Though a healthy and versatile diet is worthwhile long-term, it is important to find the dishes you wholeheartedly enjoy eating and indulge yourself and your cravings every so often!
📸 Credit: Granger Wootz
- Treat Yourself
One of the most crucial pieces to stress relief is being aware of what you need and prioritizing self-care. If you’re parenting with a partner, make sure you take turns with the baby so there’s still “me time” for each of you. Maybe you want to take a lesson from Parks and Rec and treat yo’ self with massages, mimosas, or fine leather goods. Whether treating yourself means taking a girl’s trip or just a minute to breathe, allowing yourself time to enjoy your hobbies can be refreshing.
Taking ten minutes to finish your maternity skincare routine, carve out some alone time, or sit down to read a chapter of a book can do wonders for your stress levels. Having a child around the house can mean that you often sacrifice the things that you used to do, but taking time to revisit activities that bring you joy will make all the difference. Trust us—you deserve it. Including your child in things that you enjoy doing, like cooking, walking, or listening to music, can also end up being a fun bonding experience.
- Communicate and Plan
When it comes to life with a newborn, there are always going to be surprises along the way. Though this will always reign true, an important part of being a new mom is to have a financial plan and anticipate some of the unexpected. Prioritizing financial goals and budget adjustments to account for your growing family, and having these conversations early, can alleviate future stress and give you peace of mind.
A good practice that you can implement is to look at ways to cut costs regularly and update the post-delivery budget which often consists of diapers, childcare, etc. As these costs pile up, it can be helpful to explore more unique ways to grow your finances. If you’re a homeowner, looking into refinancing your mortgage could be beneficial when freeing up money for future college funds or taking on home improvement projects. You also may want to consider life and disability insurance, increasing your emergency funds, getting serious about retirement savings, and writing or adjusting your will.
- Give Yourself Grace and Talk Things Out
Last but certainly not least, making sure to continuously give yourself grace during this period of your life can mean that you’re on the right road to self-care. Allowing yourself to accept every mood and realizing you are not alone in your emotions can be a very empowering thing. If you’re ever feeling consumed by stress, talk things out with your partner, family members, or friends. If post-partum life is becoming overwhelming, you can confide in a therapist or new mom support group.
Having a child is momentous and beautiful; parenting and motherhood will teach you lessons you didn’t know that you could learn, and bring you unparalleled joy. It also comes with its fair share of challenges and stress, which should be met with understanding and grace. Take a deep breath and remember you’ve got this!
Which stress relief methods work for you? Let us know below!