5 Parenting Tips to Cope with Mum Stress: First Time Mothers

By Arnold, Hessel Group

It can be overwhelming being a mum for the first time. It feels like your whole world is flipped upside-down then back up again, only to leave you wondering where did all my free time go? But keep going, girl!

We at Hessel Group understand the stress involved, so we decided to talk to mothers who have been through the same stressful experiences and collected a full crib of parenting tips from them.


Make Time for Yourself: Me Time

Taking some time off for yourself shouldn’t be seen as selfish. Self-care should be one of your top priorities. If your child doesn’t have you, who else can they rely on? That’s why scheduling a piece of the day to yourself to enjoy something you truly love, should be one of your top priority. Imagine you’re cooking lunch, ironing clothes while your baby is crying constantly. You’re freaking out… but then you realise ‘Wait! I’m going to watch my favourite TV show tonight, or go to this amazing yoga class’. Having something to look forward to helps take your mind off stressful situations, and doesn’t make taking care of a child or newborn baby seem like it’s an apocalypse.


Healthy Eating and Drinking: Boost Your Energy

Snacking on junk food constantly -- full of fat and sugar can be so easy, especially if you’re stressed up to your stomach from parenting. But stop! It’ll just make your stress worse. Now eating fresh veggies, lentils and salads may not be the most appealing thing out there. But hold on! There’s a simple fix for that. You can start by cooking healthy and actually tasty home-made meals here (http://www.eatingwell.com/recipes/18702/mealtimes/dinner/family-kids/). Now we know cooking a healthy home-made meal can take some time, but it’s well worth the effort. Eating these nutrient-rich foods can help improve your mood, reduce your stress and just fill you up with a bucket load of energy! Energy you need to take care for your child.

Also! You can save time by cooking the same nutritious meal for your whole family, instead of just yourself. Think about it, your child and you are eating healthy. Both full of energy. Your child will be less moody, because they feel good. You feel less moody because they aren’t throwing a tantrum every 20 minutes, making you feel even less stressed. It’s a win, win!


Sleep When Your Baby Sleeps: Embrace an Unclean House

You’re in a deep blissful sleep. It’s 3am and… ‘Wait. What is that noise?!’. Your baby is doing its nightly scheduled 3 am cry. Parents know the struggles of trying to fight for enough sleep while taking care of your young one. The best way to get the most amount of sleep possible? Sleep when your baby sleeps. The moment your baby sleeps, either at night or afternoon take advantage of that moment to get the most rest possible. Your dirty dishes or unfinished housework can wait, you can always do them after you wake up. Having a baby shouldn’t mean you have to stay awake with only 4-hours of sleep for the next 4-5 years., because the worst thing you can do is run half-asleep with a baby constantly demanding your attention, there’s no faster way to get stressed.

Having little sleep causes your body to raise the level of a hormone called ‘cortisol’ in your body. A high-level of cortisol can raise your blood pressure, increase your heart rate making you feel stressed. That’s why your beauty sleep is essential to feel good.


Taking up Support from Friends and Family

Sometimes you may feel guilty asking friends and family for their time to take care of your child, but that’s no reason to push yourself to the limit. Some of them, especially your parents will be glad to help or actually want to help you! You can use this time away from your child to recharge, de-stress and actually live your life.

Hiring a babysitter or nanny could be another way to take time away from your child. If you’re looking for those services, we at Hessel Group can provide that. We offer other helpful childcare articles like this and a large range of other childcare services you could use to help free up your time to recharge and live a little. Come check us out! (https://hesselgroup.com.au/care-support/)


Being Aware of What Stresses and Relaxes You

Emotional triggers. These are triggers which causes you as a parent to become stressed. Certain situations such as your new baby crying, even smelling particular odours or words can evoke stress in you. Simply being aware of those triggers can help you make a ‘coping plan’ and/or avoid them.

So, what’s a coping plan? This should be a list of activities you can do easily that helps you relax whenever you feel like you’re exploding from stress such as meditation, talking on the phone with your best friend just to name a few. So, whenever can’t handle the pressure anymore, you have a solid plan to deal with it.

From a real mother’s words – “just quickly checking in how you feel emotionally every day, gives you ample warning on whether you need extra support from friends or family and help you avoid anxiety or emotional outbursts”.


The Truth…

There’s no doubt being a first-time mother can be an overwhelming, stressful experience. But it’s okay to dedicate some time to yourself, sleep while having an unclean house or ask for support from friends and family. This is your first-time and every mother was in the same position at one point in their life. Having the same feelings of self-doubt, stress and anxiety. This advice from real mothers will guide you a step closer to having a stress-free parenthood experience, and also a healthy mother and baby relationship, which you and every parent deserve.

Eating Healthy Sources:
https://www.mother.ly/child/how-my-mother-taught-me-to-eat-healthy-with-7-simple-habits
https://www.edisoninst.com/eating-to-manage-stress/

Lack of Sleep Side-Effect Sources:
https://www.sleepscore.com/how-to-rest-your-way-to-less-stress/

Emotional Trigger Sources:
https://lonerwolf.com/emotional-triggers/

Note: The views and advice expressed on this blog post are those of the author and are not representative of the Pregnancy Babies & Children's Expo.

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