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7 Strategies to Help Your Baby Sleep All Night

7 Strategies to Help Your Baby Sleep All Night

When a new baby arrives the first thing everyone is quick to point out is how you’ll be kissing your good night’s sleep goodbye. This really doesn’t have to be the case, at least after the first six weeks of a baby’s life. At that point of your newborn’s little life, you can start to help your baby learn to sleep all night. These strategies have been put to the test and have helped many moms and dads claim back their restful nights.

1. Bedtime Feeding Ritual

During the day, when the baby is feeding, make these times lively and fun. Have the television on or the radio; don’t be afraid to sing or talk to your baby while she feeds. In contrast, when it is time for her bedtime feeding, find a quiet space with low lighting and avoid too much talking. If you do speak to your baby while she’s feeding, use soft, whisper tones. This differentiation between feedings will help your little one realize it is time to settle down and relax.

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2. Put Baby Down Awake

When it is time for bed, it is important to put your baby in bed while she is still awake. It is okay if she’s drowsy and relaxed, but avoid putting her in her bed once she has already fallen asleep. By putting her down awake, you are teaching her that it is bedtime and this is where she goes to drift off. She will eventually get use to the environment and feel comfortable enough to fall asleep without your help.

3. Try to Keep a Schedule

If you are most likely to put your baby down at 7 p.m. then aim to do so every night, right from about 3 months old. This helps the baby’s natural sleep cycle set itself and she will appreciate the routine. Having your baby go to bed later does not mean your little one will sleep in or sleep longer. In fact, this is often counter-productive. Lack of sleep can create a cranky, unsettled baby who then won’t sleep properly. Having a schedule makes for a happy, rested baby.

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4. Get a White Noise Machine

Some babies do better if there is background noise. This doesn’t mean blaring the latest pop hits when it’s bedtime. Invest in a white noise machine which is designed specifically for soothing and relaxation. Some of the sounds include waterfalls, birds, ocean waves and other repetitive, yet peaceful sounds.

5. Cry it Out

This strategy is very controversial amongst parents and professionals alike. If your baby is older, say around five or six months, this method could be effective—that is if you are prepared to endure it. This isn’t for everyone since things will likely get worse before they get better for a few nights at least. You would simply put your little one to bed, kiss goodnight and leave the room. She may cry but you wouldn’t go over and break the rule. The objective in the strategy is to let her cry herself to sleep in an effort to learn self-soothing.

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6. Gently Easing Towards Self-Soothing

If crying it out is not your cup of tea, you could employ a gentler strategy where you would let your baby cry only for an allotted amount of time, for example five minutes, before you go in and provide reassurance. This could mean you simply go in, reposition her, give the soother, and leave with a whispered good night.

7. Wean from Nighttime Feedings

Once your baby is four to six months old, it is appropriate to start cutting out feedings throughout the night. First make sure you are feeding enough during the day and then, if you must go to your baby in the night, do so but without a feeding. Just soothe, swaddle or cover up and put her back to bed. This will prevent your baby becoming reliant on having to feed in the night and help her learn to sleep all night.

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Last Updated on September 20, 2018

How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

Being in a hurry all the time drains your energy. Your work and routine life make you feel overwhelmed. Getting caught up in things beyond your control stresses you out…

If you’d like to stay calm and cool in stressful situations, put the following 8 steps into practice:

1. Breathe

The next time you’re faced with a stressful situation that makes you want to hurry, stop what you’re doing for one minute and perform the following steps:

  • Take five deep breaths in and out (your belly should come forward with each inhale).
  • Imagine all that stress leaving your body with each exhale.
  • Smile. Fake it if you have to. It’s pretty hard to stay grumpy with a goofy grin on your face.

Feel free to repeat the above steps every few hours at work or home if you need to.

2. Loosen up

After your breathing session, perform a quick body scan to identify any areas that are tight or tense. Clenched jaw? Rounded shoulders? Anything else that isn’t at ease?

Gently touch or massage any of your body parts that are under tension to encourage total relaxation. It might help to imagine you’re in a place that calms you: a beach, hot tub, or nature trail, for example.

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3. Chew slowly

Slow down at the dinner table if you want to learn to be patient and lose weight. Shoveling your food down as fast as you can is a surefire way to eat more than you need to (and find yourself with a bellyache).

Be a mindful eater who pays attention to the taste, texture, and aroma of every dish. Chew slowly while you try to guess all of the ingredients that were used to prepare your dish.

Chewing slowly will also reduce those dreadful late-night cravings that sneak up on you after work.

4. Let go

Cliche as it sounds, it’s very effective.

The thing that seems like the end of the world right now?

It’s not. Promise.

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Stressing and worrying about the situation you’re in won’t do any good because you’re already in it, so just let it go.

Letting go isn’t easy, so here’s a guide to help you:

21 Things To Do When You Find It Hard To Let Go

5. Enjoy the journey

Focusing on the end result can quickly become exhausting. Chasing a bold, audacious goal that’s going to require a lot of time and patience? Split it into several mini-goals so you’ll have several causes for celebration.

Stop focusing on the negative thoughts. Giving yourself consistent positive feedback will help you grow patience, stay encouraged, and find more joy in the process of achieving your goals.

6. Look at the big picture

The next time you find your stress level skyrocketing, take a deep breath, and ask yourself:

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Will this matter to me…

  • Next week?
  • Next month?
  • Next year?
  • In 10 years?

Hint: No, it won’t.

I bet most of the stuff that stresses you wouldn’t matter the next week, maybe not even the next day.

Stop agonizing over things you can’t control because you’re only hurting yourself.

7. Stop demanding perfection of yourself

You’re not perfect and that’s okay. Show me a person who claims to be perfect and I’ll show you a dirty liar.

Demanding perfection of yourself (or anybody else) will only stress you out because it just isn’t possible.

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8. Practice patience every day

Below are a few easy ways you can practice patience every day, increasing your ability to remain calm and cool in times of stress:

  • The next time you go to the grocery store, get in the longest line.
  • Instead of going through the drive-thru at your bank, go inside.
  • Take a long walk through a secluded park or trail.

Final thoughts

Staying calm in stressful situations is possible, all you need is some daily practice.

Taking deep breaths and eat mindfully are some simple ways to train your brain to be more patient. But changing the way you think of a situation and staying positive are most important in keeping cool whenever you feel overwhelmed and stressful.

Featured photo credit: Brooke Cagle via unsplash.com

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