Written by Brooke Strickland for Nannies Plus

If you have recently had a baby, adopted a child, or welcomed a foster child into your home, you understand the addition of a new child is a big adjustment for the whole family.

This is an exciting time with a lot of emotions. Becoming a parent or welcoming a new child is a life-changing experience and adjusting to your new lifestyle will certainly take some time and effort. Here are some tips on how to ease that transition.

Establish and maintain a routine.

Humans love routine. Most of us have one, but when you welcome a new child, your normal routines and schedules will change. You’ll have to maintain flexibility and fluidity in your routine until you’re able to create something new with your child. For example, if you just brought a newborn home from the hospital, you’ll need to adapt yourself to your baby’s sleeping and feeding schedule for a while, then develop a routine that works for everyone once you learn your baby’s patterns and cues. Going without a routine can be tempting, but working to find a rhythm that works for your family will make everyone’s lives feel less chaotic. The days will run more smoothly and everyone will be happier. Having a routine in place also helps the transition if you choose to hire a nanny or family assistant.

Process your emotions.

Parenthood opens your heart to a love like you’ve never experienced before! It also welcomes a multitude of unknowns – highs, lows, and everything in between. It’s normal to feel tired and overwhelmed when you’re juggling new schedules and responsibilities and getting to know your child’s personality and quirks, compounded with many of the same work and home life duties you had before welcoming a new child. Don’t bottle up your emotions. Talk to other parents that have gone through similar situations. Reach out to friends or family members that you trust. Consider finding a professional support person that you trust. Doing so will help you avoid feelings of isolation and may minimize negative reactions or emotions down the road. Don’t be afraid to ask for help and words of wisdom. The old saying, ‘it takes a village,’ is true; the more you can surround yourself with others, the easier things are.

Hire an extra hand.

Inviting a nanny or family assistant onto your family team to provide an extra layer of care for your child is one of the best things you can do as a new parent. Not only will you have more time to rest and relax, catch up on work or other household chores, or spend some child-free time outside of the house, your nanny or family assistant will be able to provide compassionate, attentive, and individualized care to your child while you’re away. Be clear when discussing the specific duties you need completed to ensure everyone is on the same page. For example, if you expect them to help with meal preparation, laundry for the children, or with sleep training, discuss this during the interview process. The best way to outline important job duties, including pay and benefits information, is through a written work agreement.

If you are considering hiring a new professional nanny or family assistant in Sonoma County, San Francisco, East Bay, or Marin, call us today to start the search. We look forward to helping you find the perfect person to join your family team.