No one can prepare you for how chaotic being a stay-at-home mom can be, especially if it is your first child. You can read numerous parenting books and think you are ready, but you really cannot appreciate how exhausting but incredibly rewarding the entire experience is. Below are a few tips that you should find helpful.
Create a Schedule
Every minute certainly does not need to be accounted for in your schedule, and there absolutely needs to be some flexibility, if for no other reason than to keep your sanity. A little structure will go a long way though in helping you keep on track and caught up with everything you need to do. Plus, your baby will adapt to your schedule. This will become so helpful when it is nap time. Not to mention, everything that may have you in frenzy in the beginning will become second nature in your routine.
Network with Other Moms
You do not have to become friends with every mom you meet but you can learn a lot of tips from others. That mom sitting next to you at story telling in the library or the one at the park you see weekly may have just the advice you need. Alternately, maybe you have stumbled upon a tip they desperately need. Not to mention, when you are with little ones all day, you forget how nice it is to have a conversation with another adult, even if it is about the weather or which store has the best sale on diapers.
Realize You Are Not Perfect
It does not matter how hard you try you will never be perfect. It is impossible. You will make mistakes, and you need to learn to not dwell on them. You can’t get down on yourself. This will do nothing but make you frustrated. Having a little sense of humor and the ability to laugh at yourself will go a long way when things are a little hectic.
Chances are good that you have friends and family offering to babysit. Take them up on their offer. Even having someone babysit for two hours so you can go to a yoga class or hit the trails for a hike will allow you to recharge your inner battery a little. You need time to do something that makes you happy. Do not let someone babysit just so you can get caught up on laundry. Those dirty clothes will still be there waiting for you!
Payment does not have to be in the form of cash, but you should reward yourself with something. Being a stay-at-home mom is hard work! You accomplish more in one day than many do in a week. Give yourself a weekly reward. This could be a new pair of yoga pants or something as small as a cappuccino you would not normally splurge money on. Sometimes, looking forward to the smallest reward can get you through those days when nothing seems to be going right.