Advise Me

Helping Moms Get More Rest

I would list napping as a favorite pastime. Although, it’s not as if I have time to take a leisurely afternoon snooze. What mom does? Let’s be honest: most of us are tired. We could use an extra 1 to 2 (or 5) hours of sleep a night. But, if that feels out of the realm of possibility, here are a few ways to help you, my comrade-in-arms, get some much needed rest …

Meal planning or home delivery service

I’ve long touted the benefits of meal planning. When I skip this vital part of the week, my kids end up eating cereal for dinner. There’s just something more relaxed and peaceful about knowing what we will eat for dinner.

A few months ago, I also dove into the world of home meal delivery. After having surgery, I knew that grocery shopping and cooking was out. Instead, I ordered all the ingredients I would need to make a healthy and delicious dinner. It saved me so much stress. There are a ton of great, affordable at-home delivery dinner options out there that can be found with a quick online search.

Laundry system

I don’t know about you, but laundry is my nemesis. It never leaves. It’s always present. It slowly creeps into every space of our home. In an attempt to squash this enemy, I started looking at different laundry systems that other moms use. For me, I do one small load a day and fold it at night while watching TV with my husband. You know your family and what will work for you. Finding a solution to the “beast” can help ease stress and offer rest.

Night-time wind-down

One of the biggest disruptions to sleep is electronic usage. I’m guilty. I like to scan social media and check my email right before going to bed. Studies have now shown that the blue light emitted by cell phones, computers, tablets and televisions actually inhibits the production of melatonin. Melatonin is the hormone responsible for creating a healthy awake/sleep cycle.

Instead of checking your screen right before attempting to doze off, try reading a book or magazine, sipping some nighttime tea or engaging in a relaxing evening ritual. I, for one, love waiting until my kids are in bed to take a long, hot shower and create a mini-spa evening. I sleep like a baby on those nights. Go figure.

Friends and date night

For me, nothing is as restful as having time to recharge with my husband and friends. While my husband and I are lucky enough to have regular date nights, I also look forward to time with friends. We catch up, share war stories (aka mom stories), laugh and commiserate. I always leave recharged and ready for another day of motherhood.

Schedule it and don’t feel guilty

I used to struggle with feeling guilty about taking any time away from my kids. While sitting and getting a pedicure with a friend, the guilt on my face must have been evident. I couldn’t relax and enjoy the time. But, my kind and wise friend said, “Nicole, you’ll go back to them a better mom, and that’s what you want.” She was right. Since then, I make time to recharge and be refreshed, so I can be the best version of myself for my kids. They deserve it, and hey, so do I. And, you do, too.

Sleep Parenting

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