Welcome to 31 Days of Hope for Moms! To see all the posts in the series, click here!

Hope for the Tired Mom - When you feel like you'll lose your mind unless you get sleep

Today, on this very first day of the series, I’m speaking to the tired mom. In other words, I’m speaking to all moms.

I think we’ve all been tired at some point in our lives but exhaustion seems to take on a whole new meaning when we begin having children! Whether it’s the newborn who will sleep during the day but not at night, the three year old who is potty training and gets you up after having wet the bed or the various tasks that keep you up late so that you don’t get the rest you need.

Just so you know, I’m writing this at 11 pm….ahem.

This morning, I could literally feel myself falling asleep as I read 3 year old son a book. I had gone to bed past midnight and was awakened at 6 am by a bright-eyed, almost one year old girl, loudly informing me that she was ready to eat and NOT go back to bed ;)

Every night I say I’ll go to bed earlier but then I don’t. There is always, always something to do. It seems too like I compound my life by adding task after task to my never-ending and undone to-do list. The vicious cycle of tiredness repeats itself and I am struggling to just get through the day.

As we go through this series, I’ll be offering some Biblical encouragement about each topic I’m speaking on as well as some practical helps for finding peace in your situation.

If you are currently at this place in your life, can I just encourage you and perhaps challenge you a little with some Biblical truth?

One of the things I am finally coming to realize is that I’m just not always going to get as much sleep as I want to or even need to. Mothering younger children makes for a busy season of life and there’s no doubt about that. God can give us the grace to make it through the sleepless days. It is in our weakness that we discover our need for His sufficiency.  (2 Corinthians 12:9-10)

tired woman

It may seem like it will never end, like we will never catch up on our sleep and we feel as though we will lose our minds! Cling to the Lord in these times. Ask Him for wisdom and grace, patience and mercy. He promises such to any who will seek.

Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and my burden is light. Matthew 11:28-30, NASB

In the Greek, the word rest implies that God will literally give you pause–refresh you–after the needed task is completed. {source} There IS work to do. Necessary, God-given tasks that enrich your family and your home. But the gospel promise is there, that after these things are done, “I will give you rest.”

Practical Help

While God promises to give us rest, we are also called upon, practically speaking, to take care of ourselves so that we get the rest we need. Here are some (hopefully) useful tips that I have found help me combat tiredness:

  1. Going to bed. Yes, you heard me ;) Put down the remote and step awaayyy from your TV. I love relaxing by watching a show with my husband late at night but it’s really tempting to watch “just one more” and pretty soon it’s almost 1 am. If I’m getting up in the middle of the night or really early with a child, of course I am going to be tired the next day.
  2. Recognizing the effect that tiredness has on you as a mom. I believe a large part of the issues we have as mothers {many of which we will be discussing in this series, including the blues, frustration, anger, etc} stem from our lack of sleep. As I have begun to internalize the fact that a decent amount of sleep makes me a better mother, it has been easier for me to make it a priority.
  3. Asking for help. Please, please ask for help if you are so tired that you cannot function. Many people, whether they be family, friends or people in your church are willing to step in and assist you. If you are new to the area in which you live, give it time and pray for the right people to come along and give you the help you need. I always feel as though I have to do it all on my own–and I usually end up having a bit of a mental breakdown when I realize I can’t!
  4. Drinking water and eating decent food. Write down what you eat. Aim to reach for an apple, other fruit or nuts to give you a boost of energy instead of starchy carbs that just make you more irritable. Do this for a week and see if it makes a difference in your energy level! I do drink coffee, which helps me, but I have to watch how much I drink or I end up with a headache after I fall off my caffeine high!
  5. Sharing my burdens with my husband. Many husbands work long hours and cannot always help you every time you are tired. But remember that your husband loves you and gently come to him and tell him what’s going on. If you are very tired and needing to catch up on sleep, especially if you have a newborn plus other children, see if you can take turns having naps on Sunday afternoons. Speaking of which….
  6. Allowing myself a Sabbath. Sometimes refreshment comes not just from physical rest but from spiritual rest as well. Let Sundays be a day of relaxation–make it a priority for your family. Set the to-do list aside except for the essentials. When we do this, God blesses our efforts!
  7. Using Essential Oils for Energy. This is something I’ve only recently experimented with but it seems to be helping. By smelling peppermint essential oil, I have relieved my headaches. By diffusing or spraying citrus oils (you can do this without buying an expensive diffuser) I have felt more energetic. I use Rocky Mountain Oils, which are affordable and of the highest quality.

Moms, you can do this! I promise, after having four babies and experiencing varying degrees of exhaustion with all of them, you WILL come out on the other side. Implementing these practical helps and remembering the rest God graciously gives you when you come to Him will keep you from losing your mind and give you energy, even if it comes just a little bit at at a time.

Looking for the rest of the posts in this series? You can find them all right here!

31 days of hope for moms: biblical encouragement and practical help for the challenges of motherhood. In this series, we'll talk about some of the common fears, frustrations and situations common to motherhood and find both spiritual and practical advice for addressing these concerns so you can enjoy motherhood!

photo credit: demandaj via photopin cc

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16 Comments on Hope for the Tired Mom

  1. Thank you for taking the time to write this! I teared up immediately, because I am currently struggling to take time for myself so I can be a better mom to my kids. I am looking forward to reading your other posts!

  2. Hello Moms and caregivers! I’m new to the site! As a mommy of 2 elementary kids and 1 in the Army, I’ve already gotten so much out of just the few things I’ve read from here! So much to encourage my sister and friends I’ve sent them a link to it too! Thanks for being a tool for God! Thanks again Purposeful mom!

  3. Thank you for this article Jenn! Such a blessing – great suggestions and love the verses to go with it too!

  4. Looking forward to your series!! Great tips! I am always tired, but some days I have more energy than others so I know there is hope.

    • Thank you so much! Yes, thankfully there are days where I am starting to have more energy as well. Exercising helps, even light activity–I guess I should have included that in the post! :)

    • It IS so important, but is something I really neglect. Like right now, when I’m on the computer instead of going to bed–ha!

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