We all have good and bad days and as a new mummy I feel that there’s so much pressure, a lot from social media, to have wonderful, joyful days with your baby everyday! Well this just isn’t life and I definitely do not have wonderful days everyday!
Some days its flippin hard and some days can feel more like work than work!!! Don’t get me wrong, I truly love my time with my boy but I also sometimes find that I’m leaping from one pick me up to another just to get through.
I decided to make a list of these ‘mummy hacks’ for myself to begin with, as I was actually curious as to what I need in a day to keep me going. So here is my list, some I use everyday, some are more if and when they’re needed. I hope that they are useful to you in some way or just make you laugh… (By the way, I know that some of these appear quite superficial whereas some are a lot deeper so I will try to alternate between the two for balance.)
- Good quality coffee– as some of you may have seen from my Instagram posts, I love coffee, black and strong. As a breastfeeding mummy, I have had to limit my caffeine intake so I make sure I really enjoy my coffee. Hubs and I even treated ourselves to a snazzy espresso machine for Christmas as he knows how important this is for me! We buy quality ground beans and I relish my cup of liquid gold usually during the morning nap! We are worth more than instant coffee mummies!
- Move – get yourself moving somehow everyday! I always feel so much happier, alert, energised and content if I have moved. 20 minute HIIT workouts during nap time (see my insta for ideas), walking around the park, dancing around the kitchen to very loud music, rolling around on the floor with baby, even cleaning the house are all good ways to move and effect my mood for the better.
- Food – as you may see from Instagram, I like food a lot and I love to look forward to meals. It can be the simplest thing to get you through a hard morning or a long afternoon if you know you’ve got something yummy to enjoy later. I don’t write down any food plans but I plan it in my head and imagine what my plate will look like. A good meal can work wonders for you both mentally and physically so get the weekly shop done and enjoy what to have with what and make it count! Hubs and I have also started having at least one meal, usually on a Friday, sat at the table, with some candles and we actually talk, this leads me nicely onto my next hack…
- Talk – by this I mean, make sure you talk to someone, anyone, at some point during the day. If I have nothing planned, classes etc, in a day, it can be very lonely and I can easily get to 6pm without having had an adult conversation. So even if its phoning my Mum, a friend, seeing the neighbour while I’m getting in the car, chatting to the barista at the coffee shop, talking to the window cleaner or the cashier at the supermarket, it all counts and can just make you think about something else for a little while.
- ‘Go to’ outfits – our bodies change so much after having a baby as we all know which also means our clothes pre baby may not look as they used to. When my body returned to a similar state, I started to reinvent clothes I already had, which also helped the bank balance as I couldn’t afford to buy clothes like I used to. Some days I just want to wear joggers and a baggy jumper but some days I want to make an effort so I’ll maybe wear a skirt or try out a new combo. I have become a bit more confident to try new clothes now, it’s the ‘I’m a mum and I don’t care’ attitude! I have some staple outfits I know make me feel good and that fit well!
- Snacks – this one is simple, I need snacks everywhere! I’m like a squirrel; I store them in every possible space. So I’m talking in the baby bag, my bag (on the rare occasions I use one these days!), coat pockets, the car, and most importantly the kitchen! I have talked on a previous post about needing food little and often especially while breastfeeding so this means healthy snacking is a must. I am a sucker for a protein bar, dark chocolate rice cake, bananas, dried fruit like dates, protein banana loaf and oat biscuits etc. My husband rolls his eyes every time he looks in the baby bag because it’s usually just a snack bag for me full of empty wrappers. For me, a low mood often means low blood sugar and a snack sorts me out, simple mood booster!
- Get out! – by this I mean, out of the house, if you can. I had my baby in the spring so it was lighter in the day but even during winter I try to get out everyday at some point! I have been known to wonder around a supermarket without buying anything (crazy lady) just to get us out but mostly we just go for a walk in the park or I find a nice area to walk in. Being cooped up in the house can really affect my mood and makes me feel very lethargic so just get out anywhere you can.
- Paint your nails – another simple one but for me it’s very effective as I look at my hands a lot in a day! I have to paint them once baby is in bed so I have longer for them to stay unchipped! They may only last a couple of days, sometimes a couple of hours, but they make me feel a little more glam. I used to get them done for me regularly but maternity pay doesn’t stretch to that anymore so I buy good quality varnish which lasts longer and a gel top coat for extra longevity, much cheaper!
- Dry shampoo – life saver and game changer! Enough said.
- Make your bed – sounds mundane but actually it’s so lovely to see a made bed when you’re so tired because it looks so inviting! As sleep is a hot topic for new mums, make it as easy as possible with a made bed that looks cosy. It also makes my chaotic mind feel more organised if I have tidiness around me.
- Compare less – I’ve saved probably the most important and hardest hack till last. I have always been a comparer and probably always will be but I am slowly training my brain to look at me and my life and not others. Our differences are what make us unique and my baby is a huge part of that uniqueness. I am learning to embrace his differences and turn them into positives, for example, he doesn’t roll, but this is actually extremely handy as he can lie there while I go to the toilet! He also has no teeth, but as I’m still breastfeeding, this is no bad thing! So let’s try to turn our negative comparisons into positive ones instead!
I would love to add more to my list from any of you lovely mummies out there who have some random or obvious hacks that we could all use to keep us going through this wonderful, enlightening, rollercoaster ride that is motherhood. Please comment and keep checking my Instagram @mummy_fuel for more mummy fuel hacks.