Recommended for children 6 months till 1 years old!
You know when people say no two kids are the same, and you don’t believe those people well my sleep routine is full proof of that. My first son was 9/10 months old, exclusively breastfed (obvs along his solid meals), and took to this routine as perfectly as one would hope! Number two though, well that was another story all together, lets just say he’s two years old and has aged me drastically and I genuinely cannot remember the last time I slept a solid 4 hours!!
My point being, is please do try this routine but if it doesn’t work for your baby then this isn’t the one for them, and I promise as soon as I find another I will for sure send it your way! If you have got another and would like to help other mums out there, then please share it with me too so I can share it with mums like us who just want to be well rested.
This is an alternative from the typical CRY IT OUT routine, and once again if you go ahead, please do let me know though how you do get on, if you choose to do this one, your feedback is golden to me!
The following is a basic routine leading up to bed time, obviously adjust the timings to your own child’s sleep schedule and daily routine, also if you know your child is not tired, you can’t force them to sleep! Trust me, I have tried many times! Lastly, if you’re trying this routine then you have to follow it through, and make sure you have time for at least a week of trying this, also don’t make plans for this week, and lastly; good luck!
- The routine starts with dinner
- (Optional) If you choose to give a bath in the evening then give it about 45 minutes after dinner.
- This is the point where you mellow out the evening, no loud sounds, tv or rough play! Instead read a story in the childs room, offer some milk via bottle/breast.
- Start the habit of brushing teeth before bed young!
- Then here we go, lets get started; place baby into their cot!
- Say good night and sit next to the cot, facing slightly away from it and read a book to yourself if you can. The total time you will sit here is20 minutes. In this time if baby tries to communicate with you, then you can talk back to them, anything but picking them up, best thing to do is to tell them “it’s time to sleep, go to sleep sweetie”
- I won’t lie this is the hard part, but I promise this worked for me…once the 20 minutes is up, LEAVE the room for 5 minutes no less. Your little one will cry, but remember this 5 minutes will make the world of difference.
- Once the 5 minutes is up, then go back into the room and sit back down on the chair, and if baby begs and pleads just remind them it’s time for them to sleep, try to limit talk here and resort to more comfort touches, again remember not to pick baby up, it’s so difficult as they will be crying but RESIST. Again this process is only to last for 20 minutes.
- So in total the above will have taken up to 45 minutes, if your little one is still awake and crying then pick baby up and offer the comfort they want, without leaving the room, feeding them, or playing. A simple rock or hug should work.
(When I did this on the first day, I hugged my boy and within minutes he was fast asleep)
- So once baby is asleep, any wake ups before 11pm, wait a whole 20 minutes before responding! I promise the first tine you do this it will be the hardest thing ever, but remember if it works it will be the best thing you ever did! If your baby doesn’t fall asleep within these 20 minutes, then go in again, try and comfort baby without picking baby up, if you’ve exhausted options and please don’t lie to yourself, then pick up baby and then put them down.
- If your baby wakes up after 11pm, then give water/breast/milk and return them back to sleep and into bed, try to avoid the rocking back to sleep!
- Any wake ups after this, wait 20 minutes before going again.
- Remember the key point is to be persistent, if this technique works, it will work SO well!
My experience with this routine:
The first day we did this, we did the entire 45 minutes, we started at 7.45pm.
I sat for 20 minutes by the bed and Y sat in this cot smiling and laughing.
I then left the room for 5 minutes and god…he went mental! I timed the 5 minutes and as soon as it hit 5, I went into the room and told him mummies here, it’s time to go to sleep.
The second 20 minutes were harder, my little boy stood up in his cot and pleaded with me, repeatedly saying mum! God it was heart breaking, but I found pretending I was asleep on the chair, and looking away made it that tiny bit more bearable. Once the 20 minutes was up, he was still awake, I took him into my arms and for the first time ever, within minutes without the breast he fell asleep!! OMG IT WORKED!!!! At this point it was 8.30pm
He woke up shortly before 1am, and I aimed to wait 20 minutes, but 7 minutes later he was fast asleep…SERIOUSLY I had no idea this child was capable of this…PRIOR to this I would respond instantly and at times he would rather play than sleep…at 3 am this was horrid!
He then woke up at 4am, and didn’t sleep after 20 minutes so I went in and gave him a feed, shortly after he went back to sleep. My baby then woke up at 8am, I left him for 20 minutes, he didn’t fall asleep again, so It was the perfect time for him to wake up and to start the day!
In the day. He still had one nap, and it went sort of like this but not as longer!
The second evening went pretty much the same…
The third evening he woke up more often at night but would fall asleep within minutes…
The fourth evening went way better, he fell asleep in the first 20 minutes…and woke up once at night and was asleep within 30 seconds…Soon, he was asleep at 8pm on the dot, and woke up at 8am! Some days…I actually missed him at night and felt like waking him up…Don’t worry I never did!
If you have ANY questions at all, please contact me! or like I said if you have any feedback or a better routine you would like to share, please let me know.
Much love to you all xx