When you have kids, it can be tough on your mental health. There are a lot of expectations out there about what a ‘perfect’ mother is, and if you don’t feel as though you’re keeping up with all your fellow moms on Facebook, you might feel overwhelmed and as though you can’t cope. Having a baby changes your hormones, it’s a colossal lifestyle switch from pre-motherhood, and it can change your relationship hugely with your partner. If you feel that you’re losing yourself a little after having your baby, here are a few tips that might help you out.
Have A Social Media Detox
First of all, have a social media detox. Nobody’s saying that you need to delete Facebook, Instagram and Twitter forever, but you definitely need to stop refreshing obsessively. Set yourself rules and limits about how long you can spend using social media each day, and cut yourself off if you need to. You could delete the apps from your phone so you can only use them on your laptop or tablet, or for a slightly less extreme option you could change your settings so you aren’t notified every time something happens on one of those apps. Social media can be a great way of staying in contact with people but it can also be a distraction from real life, and it can make you feel bad as you compare your life to other people’s. Cutting down your use of it is a great way to feel better.
Try Learning To Meditate
Have you considered learning to meditate? It’s one of the best ways to feel calmer and happier. Find a quiet, comfortable space and focus hard on your breathing and ignoring the thoughts that pop into your head. Start with two to three minutes, and then work your way up. If you find it hard to empty your brain, you could treat yourself to half an hour in a floatation tank – you can find advice about isolation tanks and why they’re so good for you online.
Talk To A Doctor
A lot of women have hormone fluctuations after giving birth, meaning that you may find yourself feeling completely different from usual – you may cry easily, you may be anxious. But for some people these symptoms are more extreme, and if you have mood swings, irritability, feelings of being overwhelmed, a reduced appetite, and trouble sleeping, in a way that really affects your ability to get on with every day life, you may have postpartum depression and you should speak to a medical professional about the way that you feel. Remember that there is no shame whatsoever about having postpartum depression – getting it isn’t because of anything you’ve done wrong, it’s just extremely bad luck, and the best way to bond with your baby and be the best mother possible is to get some help. Some mothers are afraid to talk to their doctors about it because they are worried they will be given antidepressants that may affect their ability to nurse their child. While this is very noble, it’s important to remember that a healthy mom both mentally and physically equals a healthy baby – breast milk has a lot of great points but fed is best, and nursing can often cause mothers to feel overwhelmed and anxious. If switching to bottles or formula helps, don’t feel guilty.
Your mental health should be your top priority – being healthy will enable you to be the best mother you can be.
Disclosure: This is a collaborative post.