10 Tips for Tired Mamas + free printable to get rid of Stress
How wonderful it’d be if your kid looked at you and said something like: “Mom, you’re tired, take a break!“. But you and I know too well that that’s just a dream happened between the hungry screams at 2 am and the nightmare cry at 4 am, or the wet bed or ear infection, or.. Well, feel free to add to the list your personal experience. That’s why sometimes it’s necessary to stop the clock pendulum and read these 10 tips for tired Mamas. Treasure them Mama, because yes, you deserve it!
Because we all know that we’re not just talking about night watch. No, no, no! Besides the sleep deprivation, we have to add the million daily commitments and duties. As taking care of a toddler weren’t enough, there’s your job, the house, the husband, grocery, errands, extra activities aaaaand your grandma’s sister’s cousin’s birthday party that you can’t absolutely miss, right? But don’t you feel slightly like Voldemort, ready to shoot Avada Kedavras against anyone who dares to make eye contact with you? Yes? Then keep reading.
10 tips for tired mamas
There’s hope out there and you probably already know all these things but it’s hard to give yourself permission to do them. Sounds familiar? But remember, if you burn out all your resources, you won’t be able to do anything. So it’s time to recharge your batteries, Okay? Let’s go.
1. Rest anytime you can.
Of all tips for tired mamas, this is definitely my favorite. It might sound redundant but it’s easier said than done, right? Wrong!! You won’t be a better mom cleaning your house every single day. But you will be if you use that time to close your eyes and rest. Being a mama is probably the greatest joy but also the greatest challenge of all. Don’t underestimate it and face it with a rested mind anytime you can. I assure you that nobody will dare to think that you’re being lazy. And if they do, tell them to go have a barefoot walk on some Lego. You don’t need people who bring negativity in your life, especially in this moment.
Once rested, you’ll have the clarity to face this issue with them (if you want to. Or, for how I see it, you can leave these people there where they are). But never, and I mean never, apologize for needing to sleep. And use all the bonuses you have to swap with your husband, for example for Mother’s Day or your birthday, etc.
2. Identify and handle priorities
Now that you’re a more rested, we need to make sure this physical and mental exhaustion will happen less and less in time, right? The first step is to get better organized and put down a priority list.
There are things that you can’t say no to, but there are others that you can delegate or organize them in a way that allows to save precious time. As they say here in the US:
“Work smarter, not harder”
and I LOVE this saying, becauseorganization allows you optimize your time in a very effective way.
To help you do this, I created for you a very simple worksheet that I use on a weekly basis. I know, it looks like an extra thing to do, but I assure you that dedicating 5 or 10 minutes a week (no longer than that) to this simple routine will save you hours of extra fatigue. It’ll all go to your advantage, I promise.
These tips for tired mamas are just the beginning. You’ll then have to put them into practice. It’s not a coincidence that I called this worksheet “No-Stress Week” 😉 and you can download it for free filling out the form at the end of this post.
3. Calm your nerves
Sometimes exhaustion makes us say or do things that we eventually regret, adding guilt to the already existing frustration. When you realize that you’re becoming intolerant towards your toddler or baby’s requests, or that your husband says something that really really irritates you, step back and take a deep breath. If necessary, step away from everything and everyone and go to another room for few minutes. When you come back, if your kid look at you with big question-mark-kinda-eyes, don’t be afraid to clearly explain to her that mama needed a peaceful minute to calm down.
Try to get back into your best mood or have a good laugh. There are way worse things in life, but this doesn’t mean that you should stress your nerves until they slowly start to disintegrate inside your head. Don’t get to that point, Okay? Trying to resist or to power through ignoring the issue will only pull the rope until it breaks. Learn instead to recognize the break point in time and don’t be ashamed to run away for few minutes. That’s the whole point of these tips for tired mama.
4. Talk to someone who understands you
Whether it’s your husband, your mom or a best friend, choose someone that won’t judge you and will listen whatever you need to vent out to lighten the burden on your chest. If you’re talking to a friend and she doesn’t do anything but judging or compare yours to her “perfect life”, then take this note: friend X not right for confidence during stressful time. Maybe she’s good for a night out, but not for listening.
With this, I’m not saying that the person you chose can’t give you different or better tips for tired mamas or maybe some constructive criticism (for example that you’re burning out and you need to let something go). Be ready to receive words that you might not like at the moment, but that deep down you know to be true.
So leave alone those who judge you with no other purpose rather than make you feel even worse. There’s a huge difference. But trust me, opening up with someone who understands you is a real treat. And maybe, who knows, they’ll offer help saving you from the next point of this list (but don’t make this the purpose of the whole conversation, Okay?)
5. Ask for help
Sounds like another redundant thing? But how many times did you actually ask for help? Sometimes admitting that it’s too much, is the first step towards salvation. That doesn’t make you less capable. There’s no shame in asking for help to grandparents or uncles or, if you have the chance, some real trustworthy friends. Remember that your parents have been there before you did so they’ll be very supporting. If you prefer to personally take care of your kid, ask for help on other errands or chores such as cleaning, grocery, etc.
On the other side, if you feel good about leaving your child for few hours, use them to rest, get out or whatever you know it’ll help you recharge your batteries. Remember that your mood has a fundamental role for your family’s happiness. Even if things don’t get done exactly as you wanted them to be done, don’t hesitate to delegate some of these things to your husband, your mom, sister, whoever.
You’ll find a specific spot to fill out on the worksheet I mentioned you earlier, where you can put into practice these tips for tired mama and more.
6. Give yourself a night out with friends
I separated this point from the talk to someone point on purpose. The reason is very simple: if you decide to go for a coffee to poor your soul and problems out, I’d suggest to make it clear since the beginning. If you invite some friends out, they’ll most likely expect the usual fun and cheerful hangout, not a tearful confession of a breakdown.
I’m not saying that you’re not allowed to talk about it, but hanging out with friends must mean pulling the plug, forget stress and
laugh… A LOT!
Then, if it comes up and you want to thank your friends for helping you to relax in this stressful time, go for it. But the whole things should spin around fun and relaxation. The outburst I mentioned above can be over the phone or in person, but clarify that you need to talk to someone in order to not explode.
Put yourself in your friends’ shoes: they finally see you after God knows how long and it’d be very sad to spend the night cursing on how stressed you are. Not to mention that it might make you feel worse. Don’t get me wrong here: the last thing you want is to pretend that you’re on top of the world when in reality you’re totally burned out. Be yourself and honest, but try to enjoy the moment, okay?
You know what they say: laughing is good for the soul 🙂
7. Take a mental (and physical) break
If you can take a couple of days off from work, I strongly suggest to do that. You can’t really go on vacation from being a mama, but as a worker there’s nothing wrong in using sick or vacation days to recharge. Sometimes when it’s too much, it’s just…Well, too much. I know, you wanted to keep those days for a summer vacation, but does it really makes sense if you get there completely exhausted? That’s what they’re there for, use them. And if your toddler goes to daycare, you’ll see how much you’ll gain from a day at home by yourself. You can rest, practice your favorite hobby and also get back on track on some things that you wanted to do. That peace of mind and accomplishment will pay back for the (non-sense) feeling of guilt for using those vacation days.
8. Poor out all your tears and restart with a smile
Now, I don’t wanna hear it: no shame for pouring out a big fat liberating crying, Okay? Whether in company of the person you chose to vent with or by yourself for 5 minutes, just let it go!
Sometimes we keep everything inside. And then it becomes too much and somehow it all explodes. Better a big fat cry today than a wrath tomorrow.
You’ll definitely feel better and you can start smiling again. Out of this list of tips for tired mamas, this is maybe the hardest for me because, for some stupid reason, I compare crying to reaching the bottom. But it’s a big lie. It’s totally Okay to vent and there’s nothing to be ashamed of. Not to mention that you don’t necessarily have to do it in front of others if it makes you uncomfortable. You can always sink your face in the pillow and cry your exhaustion out of your system. And since you’re there… Nap time!! 🙂
9. Enjoy every moment with your partner
Think about when your toddler gets a boo boo or she’s in a bad mood for any reason. What do you do then? You give her a hug, offer her comfort or you push her to play with her friends to distract her. Why should it be any different for you? A hug from your partner, some intimacy or even a dinner & movie date will probably do the job.
Enjoy the moments you have with your spouse or partner and don’t be afraid to let him know that you need some woman time besides being a mama.
I recommend once more to dedicate 2 minutes to the vent phase and the rest to pure fun, relaxation, cuddling but without any shame about your situation. If he’s not the first to realize that, try to explain to him what you’re going through.
10. Reserve some me-time.
Going back to the worksheet, you’ll see that there’s a specific section where you can reserve an appointment with yourself. Stop that bad habit of putting yourself AFTER everyone else’s needs!
If there’s one thing (not a thousand, just one!!) that you like doing or relaxes you, make it happen on a regular basis. It could be a half day or even just a couple of hours, but you’ll see that, by organizing better everything else, you’ll be able to commit to it consistently. Blocking that time means giving it the same importance that you give to any other commitment. And it’s important that you do that. The expectation of that me-time will make the rest of the week way easier to deal with. It needs to be something that makes you feel good.
If you feel confused
Think of these tips for tired mama as your weekly routine (or monthly). You don’t necessarily need to put them all in practice at once. You could start from what you feel it’s the most urgent (in my case for example, sleeping and taking a mental and physical break, followed by spending some time with my husband) and add these couple of things in your weekly worksheet.
Then you can add another couple of options in the following week (such as going out or asking for help for instance). But keep the list handy because sometimes a good nap solves most of the problems, but it doesn’t stop exhaustion from coming back.
As mamas we know very well that it’ll happen over and over again, so keep this list of tips for tired mama (you can find a recap below) in your bedside table drawer or on your fridge, along with the worksheet. Just a reminder that you can download it for free filling out the form below.
Fit the habit to fill out the worksheet in your life to save time and stress and you’ll be surprised on how fast you’ll get rid of nerve breakdowns and exhaustion. They will not ruin your days ever again.
Remember that Supermoms don’t exist and that there are many fun activities that you can do with your kid that will put both of you in a better mood. They don’t fight tiredness, but sometimes a good laugh with your little one makes the miracle happen.
Repeat after me: I’m a good mama and I deserve a break!
10 tips for tired mamas Recap
- Rest as much as you can
- Identify and handle priorities
- Calm your nerves
- Talk to someone who understands you
- Ask for help
- Give yourself a night out with friends (different from talking to someone)
- Take a mental and physical break
- Poor all your tears out and restart with a smile
- Enjoy every moment with your partner
- Reserve some me-time
With these simple tricks you can say goodbye to the Voldemort that was hiding inside of you! 😉
PS= if these 10 tips for tired mamas were helpful to you or could be for anyone you know, don’t forget to share this post 🙂