Do you have a hard time getting your toddler to go to sleep at night? Recently we have been breaking our bad habit of putting our 3 year old to sleep with one of us in the room until she fell asleep. Now we are working on breaking this and having her put herself to sleep. As you can imagine with every new change there come consequences and now we have the issues of her not wanting to go to sleep.
How do you put to sleep an upset child? Well, the first thing that we did was agree not to give in. Very important because if we gave it, we would have to start all over. So we (both mommy and daddy) had to be on the same page. Then we decided we needed to start making bedtime fun and rewarding. Like changing over to a big girl bed, we had to make that fun and decorated, well we took the same approach to figuring out how to make putting herself to sleep fun.
Bribing with fun the next day
First we started with bribing her for something fun the next day or weekend. Whether it was extra play time, getting her nails done, a piece of candy, playing with a friend, going to the park, something. The only problem with this tactic was that we had to follow through with it as our child remembers everything.
The second option we thought of was making a reward chart with stickers on it and when we filled it up for the week, she got a prize. The only downfall to this was that it was too far off. So adding it in for maybe every two days in a row instead of every single day.
Our last option was to let her pick out her favorite pajamas and stuffed animal that she wanted to sleep with. We hoped that with this method, she would actually want to go to sleep because she had picked our the best pajamas and then had the stuffed animal that made her feel safe to go to sleep alone.
Well, they all worked but simultaneously. We had to do them all! It started with her picking out her favorite pajamas. As her mom, I went out and found pajamas that she would love to wear. Animals, Frozen, Trolls, warm and fuzzy pajamas, etc. I got them all. I put them in her drawer and let her pick her favorite ones.
This made the transition into sleeping so fun for her. She LOVES putting on her favorite pajamas because they are exciting to look at. I found the zebra pajamas from Finn +Emma, they happen to be organic and G.O.T.S certified, which makes me feel like an even better mom, and she loves them because of the prints.
Next, she needed her favorite stuffed animal to go with her – usually this is way more than one. After she’s in her bed, we talk about some fun things that we would do the next day or the following weekend.
Altogether, these things worked for us. It was very important to have fun pajamas and stuffed animals to get them initially into the bed. Then working from there. I know this won’t work forever, but if you are a struggling parent at bedtime, these steps can help you too until your toddler is ready to do it all on their own.
Looking for other pajama sets? Finn + Emma have some super adorable sets!
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