Motherhood is an incredible experience, and if you ask most new moms they wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. But it’s also a stressful, demanding process. Newborns take an enormous amount of energy and attention, and for most new moms that means basically giving up all of their free time for at least the first six months. It’s certainly worth it, but it also takes a serious toll. Perhaps one day you wander by your hallway mirror and notice that you’ve been wearing the same clothes for five straight days, and your hair hasn’t seen a brush in even longer. At some point, you’ve got to take some time for yourself. If you’re completely exhausted and stressed you won’t be able to be there for your baby. So consider gifting yourself one of these five relaxing and recharging activities for new moms.
First of all, reach out and reconnect with your friends. Your social life is one of the first things to fly out the window after your baby is born. You’re just too busy, your hours are completely all over the place, and you can’t go out and do many of the things you and your friends used to. But the people who care about you the most will make an effort when you meet them half way. Start out with something simple, like having a girlfriend over for a cup of tea when the baby is napping. Perhaps your significant other can watch the little one for an hour so you can go out and grab lunch with the ladies. Whatever it takes is worth it, as you’ll be able to unwind with people who don’t care if you’re wearing makeup or not.
You might also want to consider adopting a meditation practice. This can be quite difficult at first, especially with the baby up and crying at all hours of the day and night. But it’s crucial that you give your mind some time off from all of your worries. Find a quiet corner, or head outside and sit in nature. Grab a comfy spot, close your eyes, and just concentrate on your breathing. Start with ten or fifteen minute increments, so you won’t be worrying about what you’re missing at home. Try to clear your mind, or focus on a single point, thought, color or image. After a few minutes you’ll find the tension leaving your body.
Another great idea is to embrace some hobbies you used to enjoy. Again, these were probably one of the first things to go as you got busy with the baby. But now that the birth is behind you, perhaps you can find some time to do something fun. You don’t necessarily have to go anywhere for this, either. It could be something as simple as reading, knitting or putting together a scrapbook. As long as you find it relaxing it will do the trick. Getting your mind off of your concerns and on to a simple task is crucial.
You probably don’t have many chances to go on a date night, but spending some time with your significant other away from home will surely give you a recharge. Look for a friend or family member who is willing to watch the baby, and give yourself a date night. The first time leaving your child will be the toughest, but it’s a crucial part of the process. If it’s too soon for you, create a date night at home. Once the baby is asleep, put candles on the table and enjoy a nice, quiet meal for once. You’ll both be happy you made the effort.
Finally, schedule in a little pampering. Do something girly, that makes you feel fresh and beautiful. There might not be any good massage in Lexington Massachusetts, but what about a spa manicure or facial? Go out shopping, even if you don’t buy anything. Take in a nice meal, or find an overnight retreat somewhere. It will all take a bit of coordination, but you’ll come back relaxed, refreshed and ready to be the best mom you can be.