Setting yourself up for a good night's sleep: 5 strategies to try
Being exhausted is part and parcel for motherhood. The days and particularly the nights are long and seem endless. This new-found level of fatigue can be debilitating to your energy, memory, and body. There are however a few ways or habits that might help you get a little bit more sleep each day… which would hopefully help you to feel a little bit more normal. We know, we can hear you asking, ‘is that even possible?!’ Well, read on for some tips…
- Sleep when you can
If your baby wakes a lot at night or super early each day, make an effort to get to bed earlier than usual or as your friends all tell you ‘nap when you baby naps.’ It’s easy to get distracted by dirty dishes, piles of laundry or even the TV, but you need to put yourself first. Maybe consider setting a timer on your phone and sticking to it!
- Put your phone down
We know Drs Google and Facebook have lots of answers for your never-ending questions about your baby’s skin, sleep habits, and developmental milestones, but at some point you have to stop searching and scrolling. What’s proven is that screen time before bed interferes with sleep. If you’re serious about getting some more shut eye then try to avoid your computer, phone, tablet, and TV at least an hour before bed.
- Creating a good sleep environment
When life is disrupted by an ever-waking baby, you need to set yourself up for success by having the best sleep environment you can. Make sure you’re sleeping in a dark and quiet room (possibly even with white noise). Get yourself some comfy pyjamas, slippers, a glass of water on your nightstand, and anything else that will help you feel cosier when you snuggle up.
- Setting up a routine for yourself
We know that setting up a routine for your baby is a big priority for many new parents. The ability to know when they wake and sleep can help reintroduce a sense of normalcy. Try setting up small routines for yourself. Maybe it’s having a warm cup of milk with honey or taking a warm shower or doing a short breathing exercise before bed. Whatever it is, make it a priority.
- Avoid clock watching
It’s tempting to watch the clock a lot when you’re a new parent. You may find yourself counting the minutes the baby slept or how much you slept during the night. It can be demoralising to think about how little you slept, so one method is to try and set some general goals such as getting into bed before 9pm or not looking at your clock in the middle of the night.