CafeMom's Top 10 Tips for New Moms

The first year of motherhood is packed with joy, sleepless nights and more than a few surprises. See these tips to help you transition into motherhood.

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The first year of motherhood is packed with joy, sleepless nights, and more than a few surprises. It seems like absolutely everyone -- including books, pediatricians, parents, friends and a plethora of well-meaning bystanders -- has an opinion on the right and wrong ways to care for a baby. It's enough to make a new mom crazy. How do you figure out which advice to take, and which to ignore completely?

Never fear -- other moms have been in your shoes, and we collected their insights to help you make sense of it all. Moms on CafeMom.com, the largest site for moms, delved into the question, "What advice do you wish you had gotten as a first-time mother?" Veteran mothers offered up tons of great tips, and we picked 10 of our favorites.

Whether you're getting ready for motherhood or already in the trenches with your bundle of joy, here are 10 tips to help you navigate the surprises with your sanity intact. Read on for parenting pearls of wisdom.

 

1: Don't Compare Yourself to Other Moms

Don't worry about what other moms are doing.

Creatas/Thinkstock

Don't worry about what other moms are doing too much. Try not to compare yourself: You'll know if you're doing all you can for your child, and no one else should judge too harshly. Same goes for when you see another mother doing something differently than you. Remind yourself that everyone is different (mothers and their babies) and you really have no right to say your way is better. - CafeMom member ours

 

 

    2: Trust Your Instincts

    Trust your motherly instincts.

    ©iStockphoto.com/Leigh Schindler

    Do your own research, but also trust your motherly instincts! They are there for a reason! If it feels wrong to let your baby cry, then pick them up. If you want to rock your baby to sleep and cuddle them while they sleep, then go ahead. If it feels right, then it usually is right. - CafeMom member sarahmae3

     

     

    3: Savings Over Stuff

    Babies outgrow "stuff" quickly.

    Barry Austin/Digital Vision/Thinkstock

    You don't need so much "stuff" for a newborn ... They outgrow most of it within weeks! Get by with less and put all that money you (or the people who came to the shower) wasted into a savings account for the child. Babies aren't babies forever! - CafeMom member Bjoan

     

     

    4: Stay Calm

    Stay calm and your baby will be too.

    ©iStockphoto.com/vividpixels

    Baby's insecurity comes from sensing yours. Stay calm and the baby will be calm.

    - CafeMom member jesse123456

     

     

      5: Don't Forget About Your Hubby

      Taking time for your mate and yourself will help you be better parents.

      Ettore Panichi/Getty Images

      Don't forget about your hubby, and take time for yourself, and you both will be better parents if you do! - CafeMom member Goldenbrowny

       

       

      6: Set a Bedtime Routine

      Get your baby on a bedtime routine to make their life easier.

      Erik Snyder/Getty Images

      Get your baby on a bedtime routine nightly as soon as you can, usually around 3 months. It will make your life and their life easier as infants, toddlers and young school-age children. - CafeMom member midnightmoma

       

       

      7: Enjoy the Time

      Enjoy the time with your baby.

      ©iStockphoto.com/Kati Neudert

      Enjoy the time you have when they are little. Never say, "I can't wait until they can do ________," because you can wait and once they do it you will say, "Awww, I wish they were babies again." Time flies. - CafeMom member gemgem

       

       

        8: Go Easy on Yourself

        You don't have to be a supermom to be loved.

        ©iStockphoto.com/molka

        My best piece of advice to a new mom? Don't expect too much out of yourself. It's a tough road; don't make it harder on yourself by trying to be supermom. Your baby won't love you any less because of it. - CafeMom member kristal2146

         

         

        9: Pick Your Battles

        Pick your battles with your little one.

        David Roth/Getty Images

        Pick your battles or you will spend your whole life fighting. Patience is a virtue, and it's hard to find when you have a little one. - CafeMom member jcsmummy

         

         

         

        10: Read

        Reading to your child is great for his or her education.

        © iStockphoto.com/Damir Cudic

        Read, read, and read to them ... This is the BEST thing a parent can do for a child's education. - mom2twobabes

        For more information about parenting, see the links on the next page.

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