Tips on dealing with Mummy Sleep Deprivation

Ah so you finally got your little one off to sleep BUT you toss and turn for the next 2 hours and then the sun comes up! Here are some sleep tips for MUM to get you sleeping like your baby is.

If you wake in the middle of the night- don’t look at the clock. Your baby does not know and do not care what time it is. Keeping a track of the number of hours that you sleep, does not make you any less tired. Calculating how many hours to you need to get up, just adds to frustration. Sleep experts know you don’t need to replace lost sleep hour by hour- just deep sleep (REM sleep)- the state of sleep you easily slip into when you are very tired. Practice progressive relaxation techniques. These work for releasing tension very quickly. If possible remove ALL electrical devices from your bedroom (excluding clock). Less temptation to check emails/facebook/twitter/pinterest in the middle of the night!

Keep lists: shopping lists, lists of chores you must absolutely do, and lists of other help to delegate if someone offers. When you write everything down, you free yourself of having to remember details at a time when you are most apt to be forgetful and preoccupied.

At night, do as much as you can to get ready for the next day. Set the table for breakfast, lay out clothes for yourself and baby, restock nappy bags etc Any nuisance chores and decisions you can handle ahead of time make the day start that much better.

Cut down on time-consuming trips around town pre-planning by phone, internet, or through catalogues whenever you can. Try to do several errands whenever you are out, and plan them so you waste the least possible amount of time driving around. When you are exhausted the thought of even getting in the car seems like climbing a mountain. Plan short effective trips.

Use your multi-tasking skills effectively-Practice doing two things at the same time: for example, make out a grocery list or do your exercises while you talk on the phone; fold the laundry as you watch television; or clean the bathroom while the tub fills.

Above all, do not rush. “Haste makes waste” is a cliche, but it is as true today as it was when it was first uttered by someone who knew the faster he or she tried to do something, the more likely it was an accident would occur.

Your social life: Recognize that you do not have to uphold your former standards of hospitality for friends and relatives who drop in to see you, unexpectedly or by appointment. Put a sign on the door during nap times so you can rest or even nap. Wary is the door knocker who sees a sign (Baby sleeping- do NOT knock). Refuse to let anyone who has a cold or other illness into the same room (or house). It is ok to say “we will catch up when all is well”. The parents among your visitors will understand all this perfectly, and if others do not, don’t worry. Your baby’s health and well-being, and your own, are of primary importance always. This certainly does not mean you must — or should — give up seeing friends and going out altogether or never do the things you enjoy. It only means your priorities have changed when you have a baby in your household, and you’re not required to continue any old habits you’ve outgrown or you wish to put aside for a time.

There are some awesome playgroups. The juggle is nap times. Find one that suits your schedule.

You time– There are many ways you can reorganize your schedule to allow time for yourself, and your social life, even if the time allotted is much less than it was pre baby. By making a conscious effort to schedule these periods, you’re giving yourself much-needed respite. Caring for yourself is just as important as caring for your baby — like they say, if mummy’s happy=baby’s happy=Happy mummy=happy household!!

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