Becoming a mom is a milestone moment for any woman. That said, motherhood isn’t always easy. While the weeks after your little one’s birth can be a magical time, they can also be stressful, as you deal with new tasks—like breastfeeding. Frustration with breastfeeding is more common than you might think. Many moms struggle with it, and up to 10% of women can’t breastfeed at all. It’s important to take care of yourself during this time, ensuring the breastfeeding process is positive for both you and your baby. Here’s what you can do.

Set up a cozy spot for breastfeeding

When you’re breastfeeding, you may end up sitting for extended periods of time. You want to be comfortable. Set up a cozy space in your home where you can relax and breastfeed in peace. Start with a supportive chair that has plenty of room to accommodate you and your baby. A rocking chair can be a great pick, as the swinging motion can soothe your little one. You’ll also want a nursing pillow and cozy throw blanket.

Get all the necessities you need

Once you have your breastfeeding nook set up, equip it with all the essentials you’ll need for nursing. South Shore Health offers a list of must-have items for breastfeeding moms, including nipple shields, nipple cream, nursing pads, a breast pump, breast milk storage bags, and breast pump cleaning bags and wipes. Amazon is a great place to buy everything in bulk at affordable rates. Plus, you can grab some comfortable breast-feeding clothes, like nursing bras, while you’re at it.

Invest in comfortable breast-feeding clothes

Comfort and practicality are priorities when you’re breastfeeding. The right clothing can make all the difference. Look for nursing clothes that you can transition from day to night. A comfortable nursing bra can even be worn to bed. Prioritize breathable fabrics in soft materials that won’t scratch or chaff, like these stylish nursing bras. While getting nursing bras, also invest in some cozy loungewear, like nightgowns and robes.

Pay attention to your mental health

People assume that a new mom should be glowing with happiness. The reality is a bit more complicated. According to Today’s Parents, women experience dramatic hormonal changes after giving birth, which can contribute to the so-called “baby blues,” resulting in feelings like irritability, anxiety, and worry. Schedule a daily check-in with yourself to assess how you’re doing. If you’re struggling, seek help. The Positivity+ App provides accessible and affordable mental health care for students, so if you’re still in school, this is a great pick.

Nurture yourself with good food

Nutrition is a hot topic for breastfeeding moms, who lose more calories than normal. Make sure you’re caring for yourself with a healthy, balanced diet. The Mayo Clinic recommends protein-rich foods, like eggs, lean meat, lentils, and beans. If you’re a vegetarian, make sure you’re getting foods that are still rich in calcium, iron, and protein. In some cases, your doctor may suggest supplements to help offset the lack of meat in your diet. Finally, steer clear of junk foods, including sugary drinks and sweets.

Make time for yourself

As a new mom, it’s tempting to focus all your energy on your baby. However, it’s critical that you make time for yourself as well. Set aside 15 minutes of “me” time every day, and do something that is purely for your own pleasure. Examples of activities include taking a bath, going for a walk, or sipping a cup of coffee. The point is to do something without any kind of goal—it’s just about enjoyment.

Breastfeeding is a wonderful way to bond with your baby, but it’s not always easy. Try the above hacks to make it more enjoyable.

Written by Mary Green of