In writing this series I realized I have lots of thoughts about sleep training, more than I can share in a few posts. So I’ve decided to finish with some quick tips.
1️⃣Sleep training is cultural, not everyone does it.
2️⃣Successful sleep training is contingent upon aligning it with appropriate developmental milestones.
3️⃣Establish a regular routine around eating, walks, diapering, naps, and play in the newborn period helps to lay a solid foundation for the future.
4️⃣Make sure to spend quality time playing with baby in their room.
5️⃣Make a plan and share it with any other caregivers. If you are co-parenting, make sure to communicate with each other to maintain consistency.
6️⃣If co-parenting, take turns, give each other breaks. Ask for help.
7️⃣Anticipate changes as your baby matures and be ready to adapt.
8️⃣A calm parent makes for a calm baby. If things aren’t going well take a few deep breaths and start the routine again.
9️⃣Remember that everyone has a bad night of sleep. Plan for ways to cope and get through it reminding yourself this too shall pass.
🔟When in doubt, seek help from your pediatrician and if necessary a pediatric sleep specialist.
I think of sleep training as a major milestone in parenthood. It is one of the first times we have the opportunity to walk the fine line between protecting our child and letting them go. I imagine the circle of security (see book link in bio). This can bring up a lot of anxiety or other deeper issues for parents – and when it does it’s important not to ignore that but get to the bottom of it with professional help. Sleep is incredibly complex and personal and for that reason what I’ve written may not apply to your situation.
Beyond the sheer joy of being with my child and things like hearing her laugh or seeing her smile, the most gratifying part of becoming a parent is the tremendous personal growth I’ve experienced in the process. I hope this has been useful to you!
Please drop me any thoughts or questions below.