It can feel more than challenging to look after yourself when you’re a new mum. Before you felt like you really had no time, and now you’re left wondering what you ever complained about…! The thing is though, whilst everything can feel challenging at the start, when you give yourself 5 minutes to calm down and prepare for the day, everything starts to feel less challenging. You’ll feel more able to look after your baby and enjoy the journey along the way.
Try to maneuver even 5 minutes for yourself each day, preferably at the start but as often as you can throughout the day too. Doing this will enable you to see the good over the bad, and enjoy what you can through the exhaustion and overwhelm. You’ll notice yourself feeling less irritable and frustrated, less self-critical and more able to bounce back from the tougher days.
Read through the list below and pick a few you think you might be able to give a go, and if you start to notice any resistance or doubt, read through to the end.
How to look after yourself when you’re a new mum: 9 self-care tips
- Move as often as you can: walk around the house or do a 5 min stretch.
- Keep in touch with people: make sure you are seeing a friend or family member at least once a week
- Take as many breaks as you can: you can’t expect to work 24 hours a day, so pause whenever is possible.
- Breathe: start your morning or any routine with 3 lovely long breaths
- Keep your thoughts as positive as you can: always try to see the good in any situation. Your baby slept for 5 minutes longer today, yay!
- Accept when you feel bad and express it: write it down or tell someone
- Enjoy achieving small goals and doing just enough.
- Laugh as often as you can! Bring a little smile onto your face in the morning and throughout the day to encourage this.
- Create as much of a routine or structure to your day when you can: check in with yourself each day as to what you’re doing.
When it starts to feel hard to look after yourself
Often we’ll come up with some resistance when we’re faced with putting ourselves first, and it comes down to our self-talk. If we’re telling ourselves a story that we must first look after the to-do list, the chores, the work, the other people first then we’re only telling ourselves we’re not worthy of our own attention. And that makes everything harder. You might find there is an underlying belief that is stopping you from look after yourself when you’re a new mum. Some common beliefs are:
- I think I’ll manage without looking after myself
- Other tasks and people are more important than my needs
- My role as a new mum is to spend all my time looking after other people
- I’m worried other people will judge me for looking after my needs
- Aren’t I selfish for looking after myself first?
- I haven’t done anything to deserve looking after myself.
Change those beliefs to something that feels good
If you find yourself identifying with anything above, flip that story around whenever that feeling or thought comes to play, and replace it. Replace it with a story that says:
I will always love more, feel better and behave more kindly when I give myself the time and space above everything else. I deserve to enjoy myself and I am capable of feeling good first.
And often times we’ll catch ourselves saying unfavourable things to ourselves about ourselves and our abilities. When this happens, use this phrase to help balance things out.
I forgive myself for the misunderstanding that I am not capable. The truth is I am new to this, and I’m learning along the way.
Telling yourself this, or something similar, reminds us we’re normal, we’re capable and we’re trying our hardest whilst taking the pressure off to be ‘perfect’.
Taking care of yourself first is always going to be better for your baby and for your life – you’re able to tap into more energy, more calm, and come from a place of loving kindness and not reaction.
Above all, have patience. Try the phrases and tips above with an open mind, and soon you’ll be feeling far more in-control and in love with your life. Look after yourself as a new mum and you’ll be rocking your world.
Yoga LIVE for new mums
And if you’re needing extra support to look after yourself as a new mum, try Yoga LIVE. Each week we meet live for 3 sessions, in our own homes. We’re all there supporting and guiding each other, and our challenges are great ways to stay motivated whilst moving and staying fit. Join us here for $8 a week and get your 2-week free trial. You’re totally capable of feeling better amongst the exhaustion, and your starting point is here. Join Yoga LIVE here.
Continue learning + growing daily with Yoga LIVE
Join in our live 20 minute sessions and start to feel like yourself again. Ease achy necks and lower back so you can sleep better. Re-charge with some much needed me-time. Look in the mirror and feel beautiful because you’re glowing from caring for yourself. For $32 a month, join a group of women looking after themselves at home, and start to let the good vibes in.