Create good habits.

A baby’s life is all about ritual and habits. I think it’s very comforting for them to see that their world has order and a schedule. And if you start off right, a baby will expect to be put to sleep at certain hours and in certain ways.

So create good habits that you will stick to in the long run. If you put baby to sleep while doing deep knee lunges, expect to do so every night. Wouldn’t that be insane?

My favorite ritual, and a lovely way to bond with baby, is the rocking chair and a lullaby. It’s a timeless classic. Another traditional way is to breastfeed them to sleep. Nothing wrong with that, though eventually you will have to replace it with another habit when your baby is weaned. Whatever you choose to do, make sure you don’t mind doing it every night. I don’t recommend bouncing them around in your arms. It’s just too stimulating for them and too tiring for parents. Only do this (and do it gently) when they are wailing inconsolably and you need to distract them. Once their crying comes down a notch, go back to breastfeeding or the rocking chair.

If breastfeeding doesn’t settle your baby down, get in the rocking chair. Perhaps at first, your baby will not quiet down easily. For some reason, they prefer for you to be standing and walking around. But give it a good week and be consistent. They will get used to it.

Remember to create quiet environment. Dim the lights. Hold your baby in your arms, with his head resting on your shoulder at the nape of your neck. Let him wiggle into his favorite position, and gently rock while singing the most boring lullaby you know. And repeat. It has to be like the droning of a mantra. This way, they concentrate on your voice and the gentle rocking movement, and they will be able to shut out the rest of the world.

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Filed under Basic Tips, Putting Baby to Sleep

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