We all love our children dearly, but the lack of sleep can catch up with us. Night after night of interrupted sleep can have us struggling with fatigue. I know; I’ve been there.
Here are 12 tips to help you cope with fatigue:
1. Nap whenever you can. Studies have shown that naps of even as short as 6 minutes can have a dramatic effect on our levels of tiredness. Nap up to 20 minutes but not beyond. Naps don’t really benefit you over 20 minutes until you reach 90 minutes. So basically, a 20 minute nap is as beneficial as an 80 minute nap.
2. Ignore the chores. Yes, there are a 101 tasks that need doing around the house. Balls to them all and the 102nd task as well! When you get the chance, take a nap. When you wake up you’ll be so much more productive that you’ll get as much done as if you hadn’t napped! This is a temporary stage of your life, taking care of you is more important than taking care of dirty dishes in the sink!
3. Don’t try to do too much. There may seem to be an unending list of things that need to be done but you need to limit yourself. Challenge each of the things that you have to do. What happens if you don’t do it? Is the sky going to fall in? Is someone going to die? For the vast majority of us the answer is going to be no. Take your list of things to do and cross off the ones that don’t really matter. Take a break, you deserve it!
4. Be kind to yourself. It’s not ideal but some things just aren’t going to get done. You’ll sleep just as well in a bed that hasn’t been made as in one that has been made! Some messages will never be written, some tasks will go undone. You’ve been through the grinder, give yourself a break and don’t bust a gut trying to do it all. You’ll have time to get to it all when you’re sleeping better. For now, take a step back from your life and just relax a bit.
5. Eat energy-boosting foods. The type of food you eat can have a major impact on your energy levels throughout the day. The truth is some foods drain your energy and some boost it. We’ve all experienced this. Ever had a big heavy lunch that left you desperate for a nap afterwards? Ever felt chirpy and light after other meals? Some foods drain more of your body’s energy resources just to digest and a few foods actually make you sleepy (we’re looking at you Turkey meat!). The In Shape Mummy Health Shake is quick and easy way to boost your energy and health.
6. Eat more often. Eating smaller and healthier portions more often throughout the day will help maintain your blood sugar levels at a consistent level. Blood sugar surges give us a quick boost of energy which is quickly followed by an insulin let-down which causes us to “crash”. Large, infrequent meals cause sugar levels to spike and then we suffer an insulin let-down. It is much better to have smaller quantities more often to avoid the ups and downs. In Shape Mummy Meal Plans are based on breakfast, lunch and dinner plus 2 snacks in between to keep your energy more consistent and reliable.
7. Drink peppermint tea. Peppermint tea can offer a quick pick me up. Even without caffeine, the mint in the tea can help wake you up. Look for caffeine-free peppermint tea at the shop. If your energy is flagging, grab a cup of peppermint tea to give you the boost you need!
8. Connect with other mums. You’re less likely to feel as tired and stressed when you speak to other mums who are in the same boat. Catch up with mates, Google your local playgroup, call a friend or share your experiences on our In Shape Mummy Instagram or Facebook page. However you do it, catch up with other mums to share in your experiences. You would be surprised at the amount of support you get and at the amount you can give! Even just hearing that you are not alone can be a surprisingly big boost!
9. Go for a short walk. The last thing you may feel like doing is exercising when you’re tired, but it actually gets the blood flowing through your body and makes you feel more energised. If you’re flagging, just start going and you’ll be surprised at how quickly your batteries recharge!
10. Keep hydrated. The vast majority of Australian adults are chronically dehydrated. Not drinking enough water can zap energy and decrease alertness. For the average person they recommend drinking 2 litres of water a day. If you’re in the heat and/or losing water to sweat, you’ll want to increase that consumption. Drinking cold water actually burns calories and drinking water approximately 30 minutes before meals reduces the amount we tend to eat. So drink up! Not only is it calorie free, it comes out of the tap basically free!
11. Some aromatherapy oils help with fatigue and exhaustion. Speak to your local health food store about which ones are best. They may seem expensive but the amount you use is so small that they last for ages. If you’re struggling with fatigue, check out aromatherapy oils.
12. Look at your beautiful baby and remind yourself they’re worth it. This is just a phase, you’ll get through it. Think of what is really important and concentrate on that bundle of importance in your arms!
Whatever you do and whatever you need, know that you will get through this stage of your life. You are stronger than you can imagine. You will get through this as all of the mums have before you!
I understand, I'm a mum too! I want to provide you with the support you deserve to claim back your life. Join us on Instagram and Facebook to connect with our community of like-minded mums or join our Free Support Program for the full-fledged privileges. Whatever you do, be well and get some rest mummies!