Today is Babywise Friendly Network Day! We are all writing on the topic of routine. Please see below for a full list of links!
If you've read this blog, you know that I am a huge advocate of using schedules with babies. I have written posts on the benefits of scheduling, and talked about how to identify when it is time to adjust the schedule, and how to go about adjusting the schedule, once you realize it's time. The basic premise of these schedules is based on Babywise techniques, and the idea is that at each age, there is an optimal amount of time for babies to be awake. The average time that a baby can handle staying awake without being overtired, can be applied to all babies and can really help with a baby's temperament, ability to sleep well, and engagement when awake. Making a schedule isn't easy, however. It isn't as simple as reading the Babywise book, or looking at my sample schedules, and then applying the schedule to your life. Schedules need to be optimized for each individual. This takes a lot of time and effort, and can be overwhelming.
I've seen a lot of moms that are drawn to the idea of scheduling, but putting it into practice causes them a lot of stress. Schedules are not for every mom, and that is ok! Maybe it causes you too much stress when the schedule isn't adhered to perfectly. Maybe you have several children and managing their schedules is simply too much and too confusing. Regardless of the reason, you can still use some of the ideas of Babywise in your life and benefit from it! It is so important to take what works for you, and leave the rest. Babywise is no different. So, what should you use from the Babywise book, if you aren't going to use schedules? Routines! Routines are very different from schedules, and have their own amazing benefits!
SCHEDULESA schedule refers to the timing of your day: when you feed your baby, when your baby naps, when your baby goes to bed, etc. It is all about WHEN.
There are 3 types of routines that can make a huge difference in your days and nights:
Benefits of Routines:
(these benefits apply to babies, toddlers, children and adults...although hopefully adults aren't having tantrums ;)
The Key Element to Starting a Routine by Valerie Plowman
Incorporating Mommy's Needs in the Daily Family Routine by Emily Parker
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