Sleep Training, the vital ingredients.

vital ingredients to sleep trianing (1)Sleep Training, three vital ingredients that every parent should consider.

Sleep, or lack of it. It’s usually one of the first things new parents worry about and a topic that many have opinions on.

So, you’re really struggling with the sleep challenges that your little (or not so little) bundle of joy is throwing your way. You are desperate to get some sleep. You’ve done sleep training to death. You tried controlled crying two nights ago. Last night you rocked you little one till your arms nearly dropped off. Last week you feed him to sleep but then decided on the advice of a friend to stop. Tonight you might put him in bed with you and have done with it, despite what your other half says. He’s not the one getting up and down all night, you have to go to work too and you’re just too exhausted, nothing seems to be working.

I get it you’re mentally and physically drained, snapping at everyone and just wish you could sort this sleep stuff out, but you really don’t know what to do next. You’ve read you should establish a routine, but you’re not a routine sort of person, never have been. You know you should consider an earlier bedtime for your child but you’re juggling full-time hours a home and a baby, it’s not that easy to fit in a routine when you don’t get in ’till 5.30pm. Then there’s the naps that you hear everyone talking about. How the hell can you sort that out when your mum has him one day, your mother in law the next and nursery the rest of the time. At the weekend, you want to enjoy some family time not be stuck at home wrestling to get your baby to nap.

Well, firstly, you have to make a commitment to really want to sort this

toddler keeps getting out of bed

toddler keeps getting out of bed

sleep stuff out. ‘Sleep won’t get any better if you are not 100% committed to changing it. There is simply no point in trying something one night and not the next. You’ll take one step forward and two steps back, prolong the whole process and will still be in the same position as you were a few months ago. You really may as well not bother

I totally get how overpowering it can be. When overwhelm strikes take ‘baby steps.’ Decide on one thing you’re going to work on for the next seven days and stick to it. Or pick a time when you have a few days off from work and really stick to your plan to move forward with the sleep challenges.

Manage your expectations and those of others around you. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself and give it time. Find out what you can expect realistically from your child and work with your own values and beliefs. It has to be the right time and option, not only for your baby but you and your family too. There’s no point in comparing what your friends baby is doing, different baby, different world. AND don’t listen to any advice that doesn’t sit comfortable with you.

One of the most vital ingredient after consistency and commitment is SUPPORT, emotional support. Parents who are not looking after themselves and running on empty will not have the internal resources to cope with a child who doesn’t sleep. It’s not selfish or irresponsible to teach your baby to sleep. It’s a basic human need like eating and sex. I can’t stress how important it is to look after yourself and FUEL YOUR EMOTIONAL TANK. (Look out for my blog about fueling your EMOTIONAL TANK later.)

Round up support from your partner, family and friends. Make sure they understand you need this support. It’s essential for your health and well-being as a mother, partner and daughter and an indispensable requirement for the success of ‘Sleep Training’.

If you would prefer impartial support or a few tips to encourage your little one to sleep please CLICK Here for my FREE EBOOK or visit HERE.

Shellie X

What can I do, my toddler keeps getting out of bed.

My toddler keeps getting out of bed!

toddler keeps getting out of bed

toddler keeps getting out of bed

A problem lots of mums have when transitioning their toddler from the cot is getting their toddler to say in bed. It’s a new found freedom for you toddler and one that I think every toddler must do at sometime or another.

So what can you do about it? Well there are a few options:
1. ‘Silent return’. This is quite literally taking your toddlers hand and leading them straight back to bed with the minimum of fuss and communication. Just put them straight back into bed and say something like ” It’s still night-night time, go to sleep.” Consistency is key and you maybe up and down for a few nights but it’s worth trying.

2. Again ‘Silent Return’ but tell your child that you will stay with them until they fall asleep. Either sit on the bed or a chair, close your eyes or read a book but limit communication and eye contact.

3. Toddlers respond well to praise and rewards and many responds well to a sticker chart. However, children need to be nearer three years old to understand this, but some children are more than happy and please to wear the sticker. Maybe take them to the shop or let them choose their stickers on eBay. You could even get your own special stickers made.

4. Some children also respond to night lights. You can buy special lights like the gro clock, or even use a lamp on a timer. Explain to your child that it’s not the time to get up until the lamp comes on.

5. If all else fails and its desperate measures you could put a stair gate across the door. When your child gets up, you go to the gate then tell him calmly that you will come in and kiss him good night once he’s got back into the bed himself. You could also try sitting behind the gate outside his room, telling him you will stay there until he falls asleep.

Be super consistent, calm and give minimum attention when they get out of bed. Always explain to your child what you are doing and what is happening. Prepare yourself, it could take two weeks to see improvements depending on how consistent you are and your childs temperament.

 Have you claimed FREE E-Book? Click here  Sleep support from just £25 Click here

Good Luck
Shellie x

I’m a Breastfeeding Counsellor but I won’t tell you to Breastfeed.

So it’sbf pic National Breastfeeding week and it seems that in the ‘blogging world’ our laptops have been on fire stirring up a whole load of new posts about the breast versus bottle feeding debate.

As a mum of three children all breastfed and a trained breastfeeding counsellor, I’d just like to share a few reasons out of many about why some women DON’T breastfeed and why that’s perfectly OK with me.

Here’s the thing. Women don’t wake up one day and decide they’re not going to breastfeed It’s a very, very complex subject. There’s a whole host of things that influence a women and her breastfeeding journey. Things that you, me and Joe Bloggs down the road would never normally think about.

Let me explain. Friends, family, socio-economic status and personal situation all impact a women’s experience of breastfeeding. The influences are enormous and complexed.

It’s fair to say that most parents today are aware of the guidelines around exclusive breastfeeding for six months and the health benefits for both mother and baby. If they’re not, I can’t imagine where they’ve been hiding, cause many would agree ‘Breast is Best’ is ‘rammed’ down the throats of expectant parents at every opportunity. So I hear you ask, “Why don’t all women breastfeed if it’s best for baby?” It’s a no brainer “Right?” WRONG! For many these guidelines seem unrealistic and off-putting at best.

The very thought of being solely responsible for feeding a baby for six months would make lots of new mothers feel overwhelmed. Many new mother struggles with sore nipples and the painful latch of the early days when a hungry, screaming baby latches onto the boob. Oh, I remember it well. That first latch can only be described as a ‘vice’ like pincer grip.

I’ve no doubt that some parents question the said health benefits. Maybe because they’re not readily visible? How many of us have heard friends say “I wasn’t breastfed and there’s nothing wrong with me.” Again, it’s easy to see why some wouldn’t be willing to acknowledge the benefits.

Then there’s the family adding their unique values and beliefs into the mix. One new mum told me her mother had explained “You don’t come from a family of breastfeeders, Adele, give it up.” It’s understandable, why wouldn’t she, her daughter was struggling? To add to this, friends are always willing to share their stories and experiences too.

For me, it’s simply not just about what is best for baby. Of course, there is no disputing that ‘breastmilk’ is the optimal first food. No one could argue with that. But we need to be realistic. Many mums want to express, give a bottle and mix feed using formula as a top up. What’s wrong with that? Why not encourage the mother to do exactly what fits in with her lifestyle, her views, her values? I believe there is nothing wrong with partial breastfeeding? Some mothers would argue that if it hadn’t been for expressing or formula top ups they wouldn’t have breastfed at all.

A study Hoddinott et al. (2012) suggests that the message to parents should be “Breastfeeding for as long as you can.” No guilt, no judgement, no pressure.

So, dear reader. We all know the score. There isn’t a mother on this earth that doesn’t understand that evidence backs up breastmilk as being the optimal food for baby. BUT, life isn’t perfect. There are many decisions we all make every day that influence our family and life. We know the implications but some of us still make that choice. Alcohol, poor diet and smoking are among those choices. But those choices are informed. It’s our choice to make.

Formula or breastmilk? It’s hardly a life or death situation. Let’s just respect each others decisions.

If you would like information on how to breastfeed before your baby is born sign up here: CLICK HERE

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