As a parent it’s tough working and then coming home to nurture and provide for your family. Whether you’re a Mother or a Father, yet the task must be done to make sure your children are learning and growing healthy. Today I would like to go over some simple steps that will help your little one with sleeping in their own bed. First and foremost, this won’t be a simple task but with repetition and discipline on your end, the results will be great!
1. Acknowledge the elephant in the room- Sit your child down at the kitchen table or living room in a calm environment without distractions. Let them know that it’s bedtime and you need their help with a huge responsibility.
2. Once you’ve gained their attention and acceptance, let them know that tonight will be the night that they sleep by themselves.
3. Walk your child to their bed and say a prayer or simply tuck them in for the night. Tell them you love them and will be in the next room to protect them if something happens.
4. Before leaving the room, reassure that they will be staying in their bed all night without interruption unless they’re sick or need the restroom.
Here comes the hard part… if your child is receptive so far, you’ve won the greatest of battles. If your child is like mine the war has now begun!
If your child is screaming at the top of their lungs, crying or refusing to go to sleep; wait five minutes and walk back into the room.
5. Stand at the door and wait for them to calm down.
6. Keep eye contact and call them by their entire name.
7. Reassure them that nothing is going to happen and everything will be okay.
8. Tell them their behavior is unacceptable and it will no longer be tolerated.
9. Let them know if they refuse to go to sleep there will be consequences the next day.(Time-Out, forfeiture of toys and or no T.V.)
Make sure you “live by your word”. If your child decides not to cooperate, disciplinary action needs to be taken. Follow each of the nine steps for a week if the first day doesn’t work.
Some children may not be receptive towards what’s happening at the moment but if they are, make sure to reward them. If your child slept the entire night by themselves you should reward them with a toy, round of applause or even a piece of candy for completing the task. Let them know that you love them and are proud of their courage and act of responsibility. The same thing goes for children who refuse to sleep alone. Don’t yell at them or be too harsh. Let them know that maybe tomorrow of they sleep alone they can be rewarded with a prize too.
No matter how long it takes, your child will eventually understand the importance to sleep alone. If you follow these simple steps your child will be sleeping alone in not time. It takes discipline from you first as the parent and also repetition.
A couple tools which can be helpful during bedtime are…
• Night Lights
• Hallway lights
• Lullaby songs
I hope you’ve found these simple steps to be useful in your near future and remember not to ever give up!