Guest Post: 9 Tips For First Time Moms To Stay Happy And Healthy

Peri-Natal Psychiatry

A guest post by Anita Petrov of mommy-do.com

I remember praying about the things I have now. A loving husband, beautiful babies and a home to raise them in.  There were times I didn’t think it would be possible to have kids…and then…my sweet baby girl came into this world, and just like that I was a first-time mom. My life was forever changed, I never experienced a love like this.

Prior to having my daughter, I was a career woman who exercised daily, made amazing healthy meals and completed tasks/to-do lists and activities in a jiffy.  I took care of myself with ease. I was organized, I felt great.  

Then I became a first-time mom and suddenly many of those areas became challenging to keep up with.  I barely took a shower or ate before 2pm. Bills were stacked high and I really had no clue what I did for the day, yet I knew it was busy. I never thought it would be so challenging and rewarding at the same time. I was in love with taking care of my baby girl, I could stare at her all day. However, I knew it was important to figure out how to take care of myself too. I needed to re-learn how to do that.

These tips helped me balance my new world!

Set a Routine:

A routine can be anything: a mix of quick chores, activities with your baby and/or things you do for yourself. The point of the routine is to make it happen and get used to making it happen daily. It feels great to know what you will do daily, it gives you purpose. Here is an example of my routine when I was a first-time mom to give you an idea.

AM:

  • Put away dishes
  • Put away clothes
  • Make the bed
  • Tummy time
  • Take a shower
  • Drink coffee, relax

 PM:

  • Put away any leftover toys/books from the day
  • Put dishes in washer
  • Ensure counters are clean
  • Wash my face, put on moisturizer and or mask
  • Write in my planner

Create a daily schedule:

A daily schedule gives you a clear picture of what the next day will be like. It allows you to prepare your mind and have focus so that you can do what was intended and feel good about it.

Jot down your to-do lists:

We all have a million to-do’s, but instead of creating a list that is pages long. Create 3 t to-do’s and stick to them. Avoid feeling overwhelmed and get them done. If you finish and feel you can handle more that same day, then add more. There might be days where you put your to-do list aside, and that is ok too.

Get outside once a day:

This is HUGE. It is so easy to get stuck inside as a first-time mom. The new adjustment of figuring out how to pack for your child, how you will carry them and thinking about when the next feed will be can be overwhelming. BUT. It’s a must, push yourself and it will get easier and easier the sooner you do it and the more you do it. Getting outside will boost your happy endorphins, give you both the Vitamin D you need and a change in scenery. Explain the outdoors and what you see to your baby. Even if it is for 10 minutes and right outside your door. Push to do more little by little. 

Go for a walk:

Exercise might be the last on your list these days, but it is also one of the most important. I’m not saying go do boot camp and run a marathon. I’m talking about simple things like going on a walk, quick little exercises with your baby in hands (ie: Lifting, squatting (if after 6 weeks and permitted by doctor) or stretching. Start with a 5-minute workout a day and increase as you feel comfortable. 

Mommy & Baby Care:

I can’t tell you how many mom’s will forget or have trouble taking care of themselves. From taking a shower to brushing your teeth. Connect with your significant other so you can ensure this is a priority. Begin first thing in the morning so that you start your day right. Put on fresh clothes, eat healthy meals/snacks and stay hydrated. Taking care of your baby easily becomes a priority, but don’t forget that in order to properly take care of someone else, you also need to take care of YOU.

Understand and get ahead of Development Milestones:

As a first-time parent, developmental milestones can be gibberish to you. You will notice that your pediatrician will start to ask questions that relate to developmental milestones. Instead of waiting, get ahead of the game and learn about the milestones. Create activity goals daily with your baby so that you can ensure they are progressing the way they should. Want to know where to find them? Easy to follow Developmental Milestones from the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) are available in the back of the Mommy-do lifestyle planner along with activity tips to help you out in this area.  

Spend some time alone = ME time

You may start to notice that ME time is a thing of the past. From getting alone time just to go pee and going to the store “quickly”. However, it doesn’t have to be. Create ME time goals so that you can have a moment to yourself. We all need to refuel ourselves in order to be the best mommy we can be. Grab a starbucks, read a book or jump on social media. Whatever sounds good and relaxing to you on your own… DO IT even if its for ten minutes a day. 

Remember your relationship

Yes, I know you are trying to juggle so many new things as a first-time parent. BUT there is one more thing you need to remember… your relationship. You will both start to notice that free time is sleep time or a time to quickly eat and then sleep 😊 BUT start small and make sure you spend quality time together. It doesn’t have to be a weekend getaway, but you can still enjoy a cup of coffee, tea or glass of wine together. Get your family involved and set goals so that you do not forget about your relationship and make the time.. Not only do the two of you need it, your babies need to see you have a relationship.

Breathe in and breathe out. You are doing an amazing job momma!

Try writing your goals down. A Daily Mommy-do Lifestyle Planner can help you make your goals happen. Paint a picture of what you want so that you can feel accomplished and feel great every day.  Remove the stress and feelings of being overwhelmed by organizing yourself. It works… you know how I know? Because I started to write everything down and created small goals here and there. As I started to feel like myself again, I added additional goals.  I finally had the balance I needed.

You can do it too momma! You got this!  

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