If you’re feeling a bit blue post childbirth, know that you are not alone. If you’ve ever thought, “this is supposed to be a happy time, what’s wrong with me?” The answer is, quite simply, nothing. Experiencing the so-called baby blues is normal, in fact, experts estimate that up to 70% of mothers experience some of the symptoms of baby blues within a week of giving birth. For most women, the symptoms will begin to taper after a few weeks. In the meantime, the following tips will help alleviate some of the symptoms.
Take a Break from Being Mom
It may sound counterintuitive when you’re feeling sad but taking a break from your baby can be healthy. You’ll return refreshed and renewed. Make time to do some of the things you did before you had a baby, even if it’s only for an hour one day a week. Take a shower alone, book a grandparent to babysit for a date night, or go to coffee with a girlfriend while your spouse takes charge at home. The key to accomplishing this? Ask for help. All those well-wishers who are desperate to cuddle your new bundle of joy can be to put to work so that you can steal an hour to yourself. People won’t think you’re a bad mother for taking a break, just a smart one.
When You Feel Your Worst, Dress Your Best
It’s no secret that when you’re feeling down, the last thing you want to do is get dolled up. Especially when you’re planning on staying home all day. However, getting dressed up can be a form of self-care. Researchers have determined a link between wearing certain clothes and emotional state. Women who are happy will wear a favorite dress or jewelry. Meanwhile, women who are sad gravitate towards sweats and baggy tops. So don’t feel silly dressing up for no reason at all—it’s just the scientific equivalent of the old adage “Fake it till you make it.” If you’re too exhausted from those 3 am feeding calls to put much effort into your hair, try your hand at a trendy braid such as a fishtail braid or give clip in hair extensions
a try. Either will make you feel put together in under five minutes and give a much needed confidence boost.
Go Play Outside
Did your mother ever tell you to go play outside when you were bothering her? Chances are you were bored or irritable and looking to her for a way brighten you up. This sage advice works for adults too. Getting in a few minutes of exercise everyday gives you much needed endorphins. Endorphins are those lovely little hormones that make you happy. Of course, if you’ve just had a baby, exercise is probably off the table for the first six weeks or so. That doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a leisurely stroll around the park—preferably on a sunny day. The sun’s rays are chockfull of vitamin D, another key ingredient in natural mood boosting.