Managing Your Energy after Childbirth
Make Rest a Priority
Managing your time to make rest your top priority usually means a total reorganization of your normal routine.
- This must be planned well ahead of your delivery. Building a network of friends and family to whom you can assign tasks (household chores, baby-sitting, shopping/cooking/washing up after a meal) ahead of the baby’s birth is the most important step you can take. The secret to surviving the postnatal period is to delegate, delegate, delegate, and to forget about what you cannot delegate.
Tips to Fight Exhaustion
- Give your partner a list of daily responsibilities and leave him to do them at his pace and in the way he wishes to. Babies have an amazing capacity to adapt—and to express dissatisfaction. Rather than criticize, encourage the baby’s father to think about how happy he makes you when he helps you.
- Don’t assign yourself more than two tasks a day beyond those required in looking after the baby. Face each problem one step at a time. Your self-esteem will grow with each small solution.
- Keep at least one room in your home tidy and looking nice. You can go there when your spirits need a lift.
- If exhaustion threatens, get help! Ask your partner, mother, or hire someone (a student for example) to come for part of the night or every other night to feed your baby expressed milk, so that you can sleep at least six hours in a row. Although it is not advisable to skip a night feeding when nursing, an exhausted mother’s urgent priority is to overcome her sleep deprivation.
- Go to bed very early. When trying to make up for lost sleep, it’s better to go to bed early rather than plan to sleep late.
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