There is so much great advice out there to help new mums get through the first few weeks of parenting…from feeding tips to sleep schedules to self-care ideas. And there is one piece of wisdom that comes up over and over again: Do not be afraid to ask for help.

Though it is true—mums need help, and they should not be afraid to ask for it—when you are in the haze of new motherhood, coming up with concrete tasks to dole out can feel like a job in itself. 

That is where this list comes in! The next time a neighbour or family member offers to lend a hand, delegate one of these eight useful tasks. (And psst! If you are reading this not as a new mum, but as a partner, friend, or family member…feel free to pick up one of these jobs without waiting for her to ask!). 

Light Housework

From loading the dishwasher to running a hoover across the floor, there are so many helpful things that friends or family can do around your home during the first few weeks while you’re still healing and recovering from delivery. A few ideas to assign a trusted friend include: 

  • Loading/unloading the dishwasher

  • Hoovering

  • Changing/taking out the trash

  • Dusting/wiping down surfaces

  • General pick up

  • Light yard work (think: mowing the lawn or shoveling a driveway)


Grocery shopping is getting easier thanks to pick-up and delivery services but since those types of services do not exist in all communities yet, having a friend help out is huge. Create a list of groceries you need and hand off the list and money to a trusted friend or relative.

But since even coming up with a list takes precious mental labour, here are a few items to consider stocking up on: 

  • Fresh fruit, nuts, pretzels, yogurt, and other ready-to-eat healthy snacks…these are great to have on hand (and literally within arm’s reach)…especially if you are breastfeeding

  • Coffee, tea, creamer (hello, caffeine is a must)

  • Easy to prepare meals that require little prep

  • Protein shakes

  • Pain medication (childbirth is no joke!) 


When you come home from the hospital with a new little member of your family, the very last thing you will want to do is cook for everyone. Before your sweet bundle arrives, take up your friends and family members’ many offers to help out by creating a dinner chain. Ask each person to cook a dish to be delivered on a certain day, that way you do not have to cook for the first week or two.

Running Small Errands

Once you are home from the hospital, life will suddenly feel very busy. Even a 20-minute chemist's shop run may be out of the question. Ask someone to help you with small errands, like hitting up the store for basic household items, stopping by the post office to pick up or drop off mail, or even something like taking your car in for an oil change. The tasks that will feel cumbersome with a baby on board are perfect for delegating out to friends and family who genuinely want to help. 

Organising and Assembling the Nursery

If you put off things like putting together that cute dresser or finding a way to organise your new mountain of onesies, then enlist a friend to help. You could even make an afternoon of it and order a pizza, invite over some friends, and work together to get all of the baby furniture and gear sorted. 

Walking the Dog

Our furry friends need love and attention too! For the first week or two postpartum, ask someone you trust—and who your pet trusts— to help out with walking, grooming, or vet appointments.


They say that only two things in life are certain—death and taxes—but any mum can tell you that laundry deserves a place in that age-old truism. Do not be afraid to ask your friends or family to help out by tossing in a load of laundry when they pop over for a visit. And if they are a really good friend, they will even help you fold and put your clean clothes away (the dream!). 

Babysitting (So You Can Nap or Shower!)

When the grandparents come over to coo over your adorable new baby do not be afraid to take advantage of the visit and ask them to help out for a while so that you can take a well-earned nap or a shower. It might sound crazy, but a nap or a shower might start to feel like luxuries in the first few weeks home with a new baby. 

The best part about taking up people on their offers to help when a baby arrives is that it gives you the chance to check in with yourself, to get some rest, and to settle into your new life with a little bit of ease. Create your own lists of things that you think you will need help with and do not be afraid to take your loved ones up on their offer to lend a hand.

Another way to have an extra pair of hands at home? Check out SNOO Smart Sleeper. SNOO mimics the movements of a caregiver to calm fussing, so you can have a safe place to put your baby while you run to the bathroom, take a quick shower, catch a nap, or fix a snack. 

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Disclaimer: The information on our site is NOT medical advice for any specific person or condition. It is only meant as general information. If you have any medical questions and concerns about your child or yourself, please contact your health provider. Breastmilk is the best source of nutrition for babies. It is important that, in preparation for and during breastfeeding, mothers eat a healthy, balanced diet. Combined breast- and bottle-feeding in the first weeks of life may reduce the supply of a mother's breastmilk and reversing the decision not to breastfeed is difficult. If you do decide to use infant formula, you should follow instructions carefully.