Is it time to teach your child to sleep alone? New habits that don’t include you are particularly hard to establish since your child is accustomed to having you at any time. However, you must proceed to the change because the later you get to it the more inconvenient it will be to your child. Here, we gathered a few strategies to apply to your personal life in the hope that your child won’t feel too anxious about the transition.
What aspects should you target?
Establish a sense of security. The first thing that startles children is coping with the dark and the monsters all by themselves. Although you cannot control the fear, since your child is the one who picks up the stimuli, reassurance plays a highly important role in giving your little one confidence to sleep alone. Also, comforting objects could alleviate a lot the tension of not being around you at night. You could decide upon a guardian blanket or teddy bear.
Perpetuate a nightly routine. Constancy is mandatory to instilling a stable habit in your child. If one day you coax him to sleep in his bedroom and the next three days you end up together, then he’d start to believe that sleeping alone is a choice not a necessity. However, a gradual change is highly commendable, since abrupt changes can inflict anxiety in children.
Don’t put pressure on the habit. Pressure doesn’t work for adults, not to say what it does to children. The last thing you’d want is your child to be agitated and constantly anxious before sleep. Instill the habit in a relaxed way and emphasize on the aspects your child loves, such as a story, superheroes, or plan fun activities for the next day.
Reinforce good behavior. In our early years, we mainly learn how to behave through conditioning, such as eating broccoli and getting praised, or jumping in the mud and getting scolded. Let your child know that you’re proud of his behavior and reward it with something that he really likes, like making cookies together or spending an extra hour in the park.
3 things to make the bedroom more appealing
Initiate nighttime stories. Not only you integrate a feasible distractor for your child but also get the chance to engage him in an activity of great value. Many benefits are hiding behind reading a story, such as cultivating creativity, patience, and the art of listening.
Decorate the bedroom with a fun night lamp. Night lamps are a reassurance that, when something feels odd, you can always turn on the light and see what’s happening. Also, a great way of gradually teaching your child to sleep alone would be by letting open the lamp for the first few sessions. Whether it is a unicorn night light or one portraying some superhero, it should be your child the one who decides.
Engage your child in personalizing the bedroom. Let your child express his wishes in regard to the place he sleeps. This way the experience will be more comfortable and pleasing to the little one since he put effort into creating a universe of his own.