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👩‍👦"2 Tricks to Make Bedtime a Breeze for You and Your Kids!"

[4 Minute Read] The Bedtime Hack Every Parent Wishes They Knew Sooner

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I hope you had a great rest because I didn’t. All I can think of is whether I should have one shot of espresso or two to wake me up this morning 😴 Maybe for the upcoming new year, my resolution will be to get to bed earlier, making it easier for me to wake up in the morning and depend less on coffee. Or I could just take a mid-day nap! I might try that today.

While we are on the topic of going to bed, I wonder what bedtime routines I should add. But enough about me. What bedtime routines have you added, especially on days when the little ones can become rowdy? Whether you already have a full stack list or are completely new to the idea of bedtime routines, I have a couple of things you can add to your list.

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Recognizing the two sides of the bedtime coin: prevention and reaction. Under prevention, incorporating routines and schedules is crucial. Include daily tasks that help your child settle down before bed and establish lifelong habits such as brushing teeth or reading a book.

On the other side, reactions come into play when things don't go as planned 😅 We all experience those days when you arrive home late and are extra tired, and the kids suddenly get an extra burst of energy right before bed. It can be challenging to keep track of everyone's role in the routine, and you just need a moment to breathe.

It's essential to remember that reactions are essentially consequences—neither inherently positive nor negative but a response to an event. However, there's a distinction between reacting with empathy and respect versus reacting with yelling and frustration. We will focus on responses that come from a place of empathy and avoid reverting to frustration.

*Please give a gentle round of applause too…*

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By: Leslie Hannans

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I wish I could offer you an infallible prevention plan that ensures you never have to shift to the reaction side of the coin. However, the reality is that we can't control the future. Let's swiftly go through some examples of prevention.

The foundation of it all is a routine. While there are numerous things you can add with various benefits, let's keep it simple for your sake and your kids'. Turn off electronics an hour before bed, take a bath, brush their teeth, put on pajamas, grab a book, and lay down in bed to read. It's quite simple, but doing this daily will build up the routine. With time, they will start taking the initiative to do it themselves.

Bedtime Go To Bed GIF by Halloween

Gif by halloweenmovie on Giphy

Here's a tip for those with multiple kids: Create individual schedules for each child, incorporating visual and written cues to guide them through their activities. Adjust their time where they alter doing task so they have more time to themselves to focus and cool down.

Every time they complete a task, offer lots of verbal praise. However, the crucial aspect here is establishing a consistent routine. It's essential to begin with small steps and gradually add on to each task over time.

Now that we have a routine, for the times when everything isn't going well, it's time to use the other side of the coin—consequences or reactions. It's important to clearly communicate your expectations regarding behavior by specifying what you want to observe and hear. Consequences are less effective without a well-established routine and expectations. Another crucial point is to remember that this takes time for reinforcement and patience.

Remember, you weren't perfect on the first day of a new job. It took time to learn everything, get into a routine, and become self-reliant in the job. And sometimes, we still mess up or forget something.

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