Breastfeeding is a wonderful way to bond with your baby while giving them the best nutrition possible. It’s also a time where you have nothing to do but stare at your baby and feed them. Well, that’s not entirely true. There are a lot of things you can do while breastfeeding to make the most of your precious time together.
Here are some of the best things you can do to be productive while nursing or breastfeeding your baby.
Eat or drink
The obvious choice is water, but you can also get some food in while breastfeeding. The one thing you should avoid is drinking alcohol while breastfeeding because it passes through your breast milk and affects your baby.
Read a book
Find a book or magazine that you’ve been meaning to read and enjoy the time away from all the other things that demand your attention. Or if you need to catch up on work-related reading, this time is perfect for that, too.
Play games on your phone or computer
Whether it’s Words with Friends, Angry Birds, or Solitaire, now’s the time to entertain yourself in small bursts (especially if you’re stuck at home with your newborn).
Just make sure your game isn’t too distracting and you keep an eye on the baby monitor so you can pause when needed.
Sing to your baby
Talking and singing to your baby is a wonderful way to bond with them. It also helps them learn about language and speech.
Your baby will enjoy listening to your voice and music. You might not think it will help, but singing and talking can also be calming for you as well.
Listen to an audiobook
Audiobooks are a great way to read books when you don’t have the time to sit down and read a physical book. Listening to audiobooks while nursing is a great way to relax, get lost in a new world, and learn something new at the same time!
Listen to podcasts
Podcasts are another great way to stay up-to-date on current events, learn something new, or simply relax while you nurse.
There are many different types of podcasts out there so find one that suits your interests.
Browse the internet
You can catch up on the news, browse Facebook and see what’s happening in the world without having to get up and leave your nursing baby behind.
Send emails and texts
Easily one of the simplest tasks to do while breastfeeding is to send out some emails and text messages. Now might be a good time to respond to that email chain at work or shoot off a quick text message to your best friend.
It’s something you can easily do with one hand and will leave you feeling accomplished when it’s all done.
Watch TV or movies
Nursing sessions are a great time to catch up on your favorite show or watch an old movie. Just make sure it won’t be too distracting (or induce too many laughs) that could cause the baby to pop off.
Make meal plans for the week
It’s not always easy to find time during your day-to-day life to sit down and plan out healthy meals for the week ahead that everyone in the family will enjoy. While you’re feeding the baby.
Remember that budget you had in place before the baby? Yeah, me neither. Between hospital bills and creating a nursery fit for a king/queen, our finances often take a hit once we bring bub home.
A few minutes here and there nursing can be the perfect opportunity to tighten your family’s purse strings.
Organize your diaper bag or purse
A well-stocked diaper bag will keep all the essentials within arm’s reach. And an organized purse can make it much easier for you to find everything when it comes time to breastfeed in public.
Breastfeeding gives you a few moments of peace and quiet — take advantage of them by meditating. Practicing meditation regularly has been shown to improve sleep and reduce stress levels.
Talk on the phone
Breastfeeding is a great time to catch up with friends and family. I find that I get more calls when I’m breastfeeding because people know that I’ll be sitting still for a while. It’s a great way to connect with people who live far away or who you don’t see often.
This is especially true for newborns (or moms of newborns). I always start by sitting with my eyes closed, but as soon as the little one starts nursing, my eyes drift shut and I fall asleep.
Breastfeeding is a great time to catch up on some much-needed sleep for both you and your baby.
Listen to podcasts
I love listening to podcasts while breastfeeding because it’s something just for me. It’s something that I can do while still attending to my baby, but it also gives me some alone time (even if someone else is in the room with us).
We hope that the above list has provided you with some helpful ideas on how to work while breastfeeding. Whether we like it or not, women are disproportionately affected by an “off-ramp culture” where they are seen as unproductive if they take their full allotment of maternity leave. Hopefully, this list helps make that go away.