Picture this: You鈥檝e successfully made it through nine months of pregnancy, a day鈥檚 worth of labor, an hour or so of pushing, and roughly 48 more hours in the hospital. Now you鈥檙e home, and you鈥檙e a full-fledged mom. Everything feels totally different, and that can be overwhelming. But don鈥檛 overthink it; check out these eight things you can do to simplify your postpartum life, before and after baby鈥檚 arrival.

1. Cook ahead. We know you have about a zillion things to do before baby gets here. You have to buy your soon-to-be new arrival a pint-sized wardrobe, wash said wardrobe, set up a nursery, put together a crib鈥 the list goes on. But you also have to eat. Instead of just cooking for two, upsize the meal into a feast for four or more. Take at least half of what you don鈥檛 eat and freeze it for after the baby arrives. Your postpartum self will thank your pregnant self for planning ahead.

2. Skip the schedule. Are you a die-hard planner? We鈥檝e got news for you. You鈥檙e about to learn that babies don鈥檛 care about your meticulous schedule. Don鈥檛 waste your precious time planning every feeding, sleep session, and diaper change 鈥 your baby will probably do what they want, when they want to. Make life easier for everyone: Let go, and go with the flow.

3. Get help. This seems like a complete no-brainer, but there are plenty of new mamas who are afraid to do it. Many women have a compulsion to try to do everything on their own, but you can鈥檛 do it all. At least, you can鈥檛 do it all and be happy (or relaxed). Talk to your S.O. about splitting some of the household duties, invite your MIL to come over and hang with the baby while you catch a much-needed nap, or ask your nanny to start a few weeks early.

4. Practice self-care. You know how the flight attendant tells adults traveling with small children to put their oxygen mask on before the kiddo鈥檚 in the event of an emergency? The same thing applies here. You can鈥檛 help your child if you鈥檙e suffering. Pregnancy, labor, and delivery aren鈥檛 easy on your body, and you need time and space to recover 鈥 while also taking care of your newborn. Be realistic and don鈥檛 try to take on too much right now. Those daily stroller walks to the park sound like something baby might enjoy, but your body may be shouting, 鈥淣o!鈥 Take care of yourself. The better you feel, the better job you鈥檒l do as a new mother.

5. Go on a cell phone diet. You might be itching to post a ton of pics of your newborn on IG and FB. It鈥檚 also tempting to actually answer those work emails and group texts. But you really don鈥檛 have time for any of that. The research firm dscout found that, on average, people touch their smartphones 2,617 times a day. Imagine what you could be doing with all that extra time. So, stop sharing, put your phone on silent, and go without connecting for at least a few days.

6. Utilize delivery services. If only someone else could have delivered the baby for you. Okay, so you couldn鈥檛 outsource that delivery, but you can benefit from many other straight-to-your-doorstep services. Let鈥檚 say you鈥檙e not into cooking right now; there are plenty of meal delivery services that are just a quick scroll and click away. Maybe you don鈥檛 have time to drive to the store for diapers; hire a diaper delivery service. There are pretty much unlimited delivery options out there, so take advantage of them.

7. Go out. Packing up your newborn (and her crazy-big diaper bag) is kind of intense, but getting your house into guest-ready shape two weeks after you had a baby is even more of a challenge. Nix the notion of inviting people over to your home to check out the baby and ask a friend to host instead. Get the whole gang together at her house, bring the baby, hang out for as long as your little one will let you, and head back home 鈥 without having to wash even one dish!

8. Stop caring. Not about everything! Put your life into perspective and set those everyday little hassles aside for now. Yes, you鈥檝e got a mountain of onesies to wash, but should you really put that menial task ahead of cuddling with your newborn? No way. Don鈥檛 worry if your house isn鈥檛 spotless or if you鈥檝e worn the same pair of yoga pants for the last three days. The important thing right now is to spend as much mama-baby time together as possible.

What is stressing you out about becoming a mom? Share your answer with us on Twitter @BritandCo!

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