The general advice for being healthy goes along the lines of balanced eating, exercising every day and sleeping for six to eight hours every night. But what mum is going to be able to get eight uninterrupted hours when they have a new born baby?
To relax, you might be advised to go on a peaceful, solitary walk in nature. What about the childcare?
Listening to mums
These tips simply are not accessible for many mums, let alone those with a new born baby. So, we have compiled top five easy ways you can destress, relax and treat your body and your mind. No suggestions of hikes and marathons here!
ONE: Have a cuppa
The act of making yourself a hot, soothing drink gives you at least ten minutes of me time. It is calming, hydrating and the heat from the liquid relaxes your muscles, by expanding blood vessels and improving your circulation.
Decaf or herbal teas are most recommended, as caffeine can cause anxiousness and then a crash. However, we’re not going to stop you having the odd cup of regular splosh if you need it – and you deserve it!
TWO: Half an hour of me time
Much like the ritual of making a cuppa, making space for yourself to do something that brings you joy every day is incredibly important. For at least half an hour each day, watch your favourite show, paint your nails, lull in the bath, start a jigsaw, or have a lie down and read your book. Remember it doesn’t have to be anything productive.
Schedule this into your day to make sure you are finding time to reward yourself. If you find you don’t have time for forty-five minutes of me time, just take a five-minute breather alone in your room to decompress.
THREE: Short naps
Many forums and guides suggest sleeping when the baby sleeps, but that does not always work: it could be bright broad daylight outside, or you might want to use that quiet time to do something you have been needing to do with two hands actually free.
If you can’t sleep with the baby, take a short nap of 10-20 minutes when you need it. Any more will make you drowsier than before, as you won’t have completed a sleep cycle.
Postpartum yoga is specifically designed for mums, to address anxiety, energy levels, and decrease the development of postpartum depression. These are low intensity positions and the key is to use the yoga for relaxation and not to overexert your body.
There are many tutorials and videos online on postpartum yoga, with the biggest focus being on your breathing and meditation. Low intensity positions, such as cat-cow and child’s pose, are perfect for restoring calmness into your body, without pushing yourself too far.
FIVE: Gentle walks
If you can’t walk by yourself, get the baby in the buggy and go on a short walk. The fresh air and repetitive movement will allow you to enjoy your stroll passively, and if the baby is with you, hopefully ease them to sleep if they need it. Bring along some music to listen to, or a podcast that will help you meditate or make you laugh.
It does not need to be a long walk, and should only be as far as your body is comfortable with.
Written by Helena Quainton at Recognize
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