Autism and Sleep Deprivation

EmpowerHer Journey, Life Management, ProsperHer Path

Mommy Mindset to Get Through Sleep-deprived Days.


You wake up in a fog, barely able to open your eye lids, as you struggle to place one foot in front of the other… and you’re stumbling throughout the day from the lack of sleep from the night before. 

If you’re living with a child on the spectrum, chances are you’re all too familiar with sleepless nights, and a child whose sleep schedule or lack there of, baffles sleep experts. 

Hi, I’m Michelle, mama to three spunky kids with two on the Autism Spectrum, and today, we’re going to talk about 5 mindset shifts you need to make to push through your day after another sleepless night:

1. Give yourself the gift of self-compassion.

Trying to draw from an empty well— will only cause you to feel more exhausted and frustrated with yourself. Give yourself permission to take the day slower than you intended. “I didn’t get any sleep last night, and it’s okay for me to take today slower than I intended.” 

2. Move your body as you are able.

Chances are you want to curl back in bed, but if your child is up and running about… and/or you have other kids to tend to, your chances of getting any sleep are slim. So, move your body as you are able. This can be simply 10 minutes of pilates, yoga, or Zumba to help generate just enough energy to get yours through most of the day.

If you’re finding it hard to move your body, then a lower impact, slower movement, such as yoga, may be helpful for you. 

3. Nap if you’re able.

If your child goes back to sleep in the middle of the day, and you’re home with them, and it’s safe to do so, PLEASE take a nap. I know it’s not always possible, especially if your child is an escape artist, or has the tendency to start the microwave or turn on appliances if he’s left unsupervised. But if at all possible, try to shut your eyes for a power nap. 

Move slower today. Don’t move faster than your brain is able to catch up. Somethings are simply going to have to wait, and that is A-OKAY. 

4. Give yourself grace.

Instead of trying to clean up and catch up on housework, give yourself a do nothing day, if at all possible. Yes, the kids have to be fed, but cleaning and housework can wait. Because your body needs you to rest. 

5. Resting well.

Netflix and chill, read a book, snuggle up with younger kiddos, sip coffee or tea, while you watch the kids play in the backyard, soak in the sunshine, and close your eyes throughout the day as you’re able. 

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