Make bedtime a fun time!
More often than not, every parent will go through a phase of finding it extremely difficult to get their child to sleep. Unfortunately, some parents beat themselves up about this thinking it is a reflection of their parenting skills, but it most definitely is not.
Kids are kids, and when they reach a certain age, they begin to test the boundaries and see how far they can push you until you give in and they get what they want. But rather than having a war and going into battle every night with your child, you may want to focus on making it fun.
If your child associates bedtime with boring routines that end up with them having to sleep – they aren’t going to want to do it, because they feel like it’s an ending to the day. They won’t like the idea of having to miss out on things because you’re still up and about, regardless of what you’re doing – like endless amounts of laundry and getting the house back in order – they still see it as things that they’re missing while they sleep. So, the idea of bedtime being only the beginning may work to your advantage.
Tips on how you can get your child excited about bedtime:
- Exciting stories
A lot of experts will say that you need to a nightly routine in place so that your child knows what to expect every night and knows that sleep is coming. And while this is correct, there’s nothing wrong with changing it up. As an adult, you’ll know that although routines help us and give us structure, they can become a drag, and we’ll find ourselves craving for some excitement. Guess what, the same goes for your child too. For example, the usual pattern of a nightly routine is a bath or shower, getting into their pajamas, brushing their teeth, reading a story, kisses and cuddles, and then time to go to sleep. Now, try pairing your routine up with surfing the waves in the tub, putting their most extravagant nightwear on for the ‘dream’ party, and then allowing them to create their own stories with you, before giving them magical powers that allow them to control their dreams – sounds a lot more fun huh’?
- Exciting beds
If your child is used to a dull looking bed that’s plain and just, there, they aren’t going to feel any desire to get in it because it’s not inviting them in any way. There are many incredible toddler beds available that come in many different shapes and sizes. Teepees, treehouses, racing cars, and princess castles are just a few examples of what’s on offer. What better way to entice your child to bed than a bed like that waiting for them? This is a brilliant way of working new things into your bedtime routine because it can always be a fantasy, rather than a chore. If you have a little girl that’s obsessed with all things princess, create your routine around that, only to finish with her in her castle to drift off into another land full of tiaras and ball gowns.
So, try changing up your child’s nightly routine and make it a fun experience for them and see if that helps to get them looking forward to bedtime or at least, making it a positive part of their day.
May your children’s dreams always be sweet.