Taking Care Of Your Mental Health While Navigating New Motherhood

Becoming a new mom is a whirlwind of emotions. Amidst the joy and the wonder, there’s a significant amount of pressure and sometimes, overwhelming feelings. And the fun thing is, all of those feelings can happen in a matter of minutes (and maybe seconds.) Today, we’re talking about mental health check-ins and how to navigate your well-being as a new mom. While there is a lot of emphasis on the physical aspect of motherhood, mental health is an equally crucial part of your postpartum journey. Honestly, if you want to show up for your baby, you have to show up for yourself. Taking care of your mental health is the building block for everything else so babe, please don’t skip over this.

postpartum mom holds her head while experiencing postpartum mental health changes

Recognizing Postpartum Mental Health Changes

Understanding your emotional well-being starts with acknowledging the mental health changes that come with motherhood. Postpartum depression, anxiety, and mood disorders are more common than many people realize. Many mothers grapple with feelings of overwhelm, anxiety, sadness, or disconnect. Recognizing these feelings and understanding that they’re normal is the first step to maintaining your mental health. Don’t feel like you’re broken. Think about all of the changes you have been through and the ones you can’t even recognize because of the hormone changes to your brain.

Postpartum Support International is an excellent resource for learning about these changes and connecting with professionals and supportive communities. While this particular post is more about mental wellness and general mental health, you can learn more about the ins and outs of mental health struggles and diagnosis new moms may face on this blog post (click in a new tab so you don’t miss the rest of this good post!) The Full Guide on Maternal Mental Health.

Creating a Self-Care Routine

Investing time in a self-care routine can be a game-changer for your mental health. Whether it’s a few moments of meditation, a calming skincare regimen, or a walk around the block, carving out “me” time is essential. And remember, self-care isn’t selfish – it’s vital for your well-being.

A subscription to Headspace can guide you in meditation practices, which are incredibly beneficial for mental well-being. For a little connecting with yourself, CrateJoy offers a wide variety of boxes. Personally, I love the options for plants and activities as well as the pampering boxes.

postpartum mom opens subscription box

Seeking Professional Help

While self-care is essential, it’s also crucial to acknowledge when professional help might be needed. If you’re feeling persistently down, anxious, or not quite yourself, reaching out to a mental health professional is a crucial step. Online Therapy is an excellent platform that connects you with professional therapists from the comfort of your home, ensuring you get the help you need in a convenient and accessible manner. (And yes, they take insurance!)

Connecting with Your Partner

Don’t underestimate the importance of communicating with your partner about your feelings. I know it’s hard to open up when you feel vulnerable. Especially when you don’t even know how to put your feelings into words. This can be difficult for those women who are used to having it “all together” and keeping the emotional state of the family maintained.

Sharing your experiences and challenges helps you feel less alone and can foster a deeper understanding and emotional connection. You might even be shocked to learn that your partner is feeling and experiencing big changes too. The way you navigate this together is going to be a big part of your story. You are a team. Be kind. Be patient. Lean into one another. Don’t judge each other for the frustrating times and the uncertainty. And whatever you do, try not to talk much at 2am when the baby wakes up- nothing good and productive comes from 2am conversations *ahem fights* when a baby is awake and your effin’ exhausted. Oh! And for those late nights when you are awake, listen to the 10-session mini-podcast I did called “Better Relationships After Baby.”

Podcast for new parents named better relationships after baby

Establishing a Support Network

Creating a network of support – from friends, family, or other new moms – is vital. Sharing experiences, venting, and exchanging advice can significantly impact your emotional well-being. Check out Peanut, an app that connects moms, facilitating supportive friendships, and shared experiences. And this feels like the right time to tell you this- it’s okay if some of your friendships change after having a baby. It happens to all of us. If you’re navigating friendships after baby, you’re not a weirdo. You’re not alone. It’s just hard. (Click that link for more about this topic.)

Affirming Your Mental Health Journey

Your mental well-being is as essential as your physical health. Affirmations can be a powerful tool to reinforce positive thinking and a healthier mindset. I Am is an app that offers personalized positive affirmations to boost your self-esteem and mental health. To be candid with you, I have an affirmation delivered to me ever 2 hours because I need to keep my brain in a good space and I need the reminders to do that!

While the journey to maintaining your mental health as a new mom can be challenging, it is vital and achievable. And remember, it’s perfectly okay to ask for help when you need it. If you’re struggling with making sense of your new identity and all of the changes as a new mom, I’m here to help. Click here to book a free discovery call with me to explore your feelings, learn new coping strategies, and reinforce your mental health journey.

Disclaimer: I’m not a therapist, so if you feel like you need more clinical support for diagnosed postpartum depression, anxiety, or another PMAD, please use SonderMind or Psychology Today to find a provider who can help you navigate mental health struggles.

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