Prioritizing sleep as a single Mom
Being a single mother is hard. That is the blunt honest raw truth. It also happens to be a sensational understatement. It's a hard job that some of us do, and we do our best. At the end of the day in your most private moments, you may find your mind still racing, unwilling to allow the sleep that you may so desperately need.
Sometimes it's the events that lead up to becoming a single mother keeping you up at night, other times it's the little ones or some noise that compels you to go check on them, and then there are the worries about money or questions that may arise at inconvenient times. You find yourself mentally preparing for questions, conversations, and other scenarios. It's kind of a head game, and most of us are losing.
After working and parenting it's easy to forget to take care of yourself. So many events are outside of your control and you're like a sailboat drifting through a storm just trying to ride it out. It's a series of sacrifices and sleep may be chief among them.
CDC research shows that north of 44% of single mothers fail to log a recommended 7 hours of sleep, putting them at greater risk of high blood pressure, diabetes, depression, obesity, and certain types of cancer. Pretty scary stuff.
Let's talk solutions!
Create a space that promotes your rest.
Aromatherapy, pillows that make it hard to stay awake, blankets that make you feel at home, and PJs that don't make you overheat are a few little steps that can help you get into snooze kinda mood.
See our recommendation for great sleep.
Get a noise machine
It sounds counterintuitive, adding another noisemaker into the mix, but something to smooth out some of the smaller disturbances can make a world of difference. It's not that you're drowning out everything — you're empowering your brain to phase out information that isn't too important.
Ooofph, more cleaning. This isn't really about picking up after the kiddos or reinventing your house; a clean environment (especially your bedroom) can have a profound impact on your state of mind and anxieties. Take a few minutes to cleanse your space and declutter your mind.
Create a sleep schedule (& nap schedule)
Cycles and routines are important to quality sleep. It can be difficult to hold a routine when you’re raising children but do your best to stick to one. Teach your kids the importance of sleep and help foster a household culture that prioritizes rest. Try to go to bed at the same time every night, and start the routine an hour or so before bedtime. Kill the screens — no Netflix, phones, or tablets [they're all sleep killers].
The truth of the matter is that you're getting less sleep than most, and that isn't fair. But you can make the most of the sleep you're getting. Limit the foods (and drinks) that are bad for you — you know the ones, exercise to help balance your hormones and put a priority on rest. Sleep is literally life energy so give it a little reverence and treat yourself to good quality sleep.