If you’re a chronically sleep-deprived parent, you may feel like a fire-fighter pulling double shifts for days to work a massive forest fire. You’re physically drained, mentally foggy, and crabby to boot. You’re dead tired.If you’re a chronically sleep-deprived parent, you may feel like a fire-fighter pulling double shifts for days to work a massive forest fire. Click To Tweet
But if a recharging escape from your parental responsibilities isn’t a realistic prospect, you’ll simply have to soldier on if you’re unwilling to risk incarceration for child neglect. Soldiering on is what parents before you have done for millennia. You can too.
However, you don’t have to just gut it out. There are many strategies to help you function through the discomfort of being dead tired. These strategies fall into basically two categories: prevention and minimizing.
How To Prevent Becoming Dead Tired
Delegate what you can. If you’re on 24/7 newborn duty, don’t expect yourself to maintain all the responsibilities you did before the baby arrived. Enlist Baby-daddy and extended family to help with essential household chores like shopping, cooking, and laundry.
Pay special attention to your diet. Drink plenty of water to prevent exhaustion-inducing dehydration. Limit gluten and sugar which, after an initial blood-sugar spike, cause a rebounding plummet that makes you tired. Eat foods high in vitamin B and iron to help brain and blood function (lean meat, fish, eggs, broccoli, asparagus, leafy greens, and nuts.) Also, eat some breakfast by 8:30 am and cut out caffeine after 3 pm.
Use your time wisely. Don’t waste precious sleeping hours on time-wasting activities such as social media and digital games.
Facilitate your sleep. Use white noise to drown out environmental distractions. A fan works nicely. There’s even a white noise app you can download on your phone. And though it’s easier said than done, don’t spend time worrying when your head hits the pillow. Promise yourself you can problem-solve when you wake up. Better yet, pray and give those worries to God. Trust that He knows how to use difficult situations to bring ultimate good.
How To Minimize The Effects Of Being Dead Tired
Manage your priorities. Do the most important tasks early in the day when you’re the freshest and most mentally alert. And living is a top priority – therefore, never drive a vehicle when dead tired.
Invigorate yourself in various ways. Douse yourself with cold water or air to recharge your senses. Get up and get some exercise to get your heart pumping oxygen-saturated blood. Listen to lively music for a mental lift. Chew mint-flavored gum to clear mental cobwebs or have an energy drink for a boost. Sit in the sun to lift your mood.
Catnap. Just a 20-minute nap is enough to help your brain rest worn cells and restore energy.
You may also be interested in helpful tips for Household Management When Mom Is Sick.