Friday, February 8, 2013

Ways to Avoid Mommy Burnout

If there is something I've learned (the hard way) it is this:

If you can't take care of yourself,

there is no way you can take care of your child.

The demands of being a mother (especially  a new one, or one with infants and toddlers at home) can be intense.  You are the one to get u in the middle of the night to feed them and comfort them.  You are the one that gets up early with them.  You clean up after them, you change them, feed them again, you are constantly at their beckoning call.  It is an exhausting job.  You don't get a break from being a mom.  It is not a 9-5 job, but a 24/7 kinda job.

After a while, if you don't take care of yourself, you become overly tired, extremely cranky, you can't think straight, and your patience runs thin.

Here are some ways to avoid what I like to call Mommy Burnout:

  1. Don't neglect your body. If you eat junk food, you will feel sluggish.  Add some healthy fruits and veggies to your diet, and you will feel all the more better.  Get your exercise in.  don't think you can do that with a baby?  I'll be writing another post later this month all about doing exercise with your kids.
  2. Acknowledge that you are a good mom.  Don't be so hard on yourself if you see another child knows their ABC's before yours does.  You and your babe are just focusing on different tasks right now, and I'm sure your baby can do something that the other child doesn't grasp just yet.  It doesn't mean that your child is slow, or that you have failed as a parent.  It just means that you are both learning something else instead. 
  3. Don't expect perfection.  If you have kids, you are not going to have a spotless house, every meal made, or any numerous other things that are on your list of perfection.  It is okay if once in a while you need to order dinner, or you wait a day to do laundry.  Kids grow up quick, so make sure you are spending your time with them creating memories, instead of worrying about the cleaning and the cooking.
  4. Ask for help.  there are days that will test your patience, and you will feel that you are about to snap.  that is when you absolutely should ask for help from a friend.  Ask if they can come over and help you watch your kid so you can get some time for yourself, or ask if they can tag along on a shopping trip or other errand run to make it easier for you to get things done.
  5. Change your perspective.  Instead of thinking how difficult it is to be able to take a shower without someone walking in on you, think about the big picture: the joy that comes with becoming a mom, and all the fun you have with learning from your children and watching them learn from you.
Take some time for yourself mommies!  One of the best ways to take care of yourself, is to get a massage.  You de-stress, which allows you to clear your mind to make better decisions for yourself and your family.  Visit me at Melrose Muscle Therapy.  We even have infant massage classes, where you can connect even deeper with your newborn baby.