Create A Peaceful Kids Bedtime Routine In 5 Steps
As a parent, one of the most essential lessons I’ve learned is that having a schedule makes life with kids a lot simpler. After a busy day, having a relaxing bedtime ritual for children might help them relax. It may also be a fantastic way for parents to bond with their children.
This post may contain affiliate links. Full disclosure here.
Want to learn how to get your kids to listen without nagging, yelling or losing control?
–>check out this free parenting class<–
Why Do Kids Resist Sleep
But first, why do kids have such a hard time sleeping?
Going to sleep makes young children feel as though everything they see, touch, and experience has suddenly vanished. You are no longer a person to them. Your romance has come to an end. Who in their right mind would want to live like that? Who would voluntarily give up something like that?
So, if a child feels detached, it’s likely that he or she may have a difficult time sleeping. This article goes into great detail about why, despite our generation being more child-centred than ever before, detachment sneaks into daily life. It’s possible that you’re busier than usual. Perhaps something has changed — you’ve relocated, had another kid, or your child has started pre-school. When sleep problems occur, these alterations are the most visible signs.
However, the anxieties that disrupt your childrens world and cause him or her to be concerned about sleeping aren’t often as obvious. Instead, fighting sleep or sleeping poorly signals the presence of worry that could otherwise go unnoticed.
Things You Can Do During The Day To Promote Better Sleep
Get Lots Of Physical Exercise
The majority of school-aged childrens do not get enough exercise throughout the school day.
At least two hours of active play each day is required for two of my children. Almost every night of insufficient sleep (waking up at 3 a.m.) could be linked back to a lack of physical exercise. My twins play in the backyard as soon as they complete their after-school snack.
Start Routine Early
This allows for a more leisurely pace, which helps to alleviate nighttime tension. Each of my children goes into their own room to get ready for bed, where they play peacefully alone or read.
If you want to see me act insane, go here. The one with the heated cheeks, bugged-out eyes, and smoke coming out of my ears suggests that bedtime be postponed. Telling me my kids would sleep in if I let them stay up longer will make my brain spin in circles.
They never go to bed early. If they go to bed later, they will wake up sooner. This means that if I postpone bedtime, kids will receive less sleep on both ends.
Bedtime fights are less common when you have a set bedtime. Children are less likely to resist nighttime if they understand that it is not negotiable.
Keep The Routine The Same
This isn’t essential for all of my kids, and the nighttime routine’s order and exact activities have little impact on their sleep.
A certain sequence to the nighttime ritual is required for one of my children.
There were meltdowns virtually every night before I established this rigorous schedule, at some point throughout the bedtime ritual. We haven’t experienced a nighttime tantrum or refusal to go to bed from this child in months.
Put Kids To Bed Earlier
When your childrens bedtime has gone, hyperactivity jumps into high gear. It is very hard for a child to go asleep once this occurs.
A Peaceful Bedtime Routine for Children
Our nighttime ritual has changed slightly each time we’ve added a new child to the mix. There are always fresh problems when you have three children at home. However, we’ve discovered that establishing a relaxing nighttime ritual benefits both children and adults.
We, like most parents, struggle to get everything done throughout the day, and this difficulty spilled into our nighttime routine for a long time. There were several “just one more minute” and “only for tonight” statements. However, the more exceptions we made, the more irritable our children were and the more irritable we became. As a result, the more we attempted to squeeze one more item out of the day, the more probable it was that everyone would go to bed frustrated, guilty, or simply miserable.
Bedtime Routine For Kids
For many families, bedtime is one of the most stressful times of the day. If you’re starting to dread going to bed, these suggestions could help you wind down more comfortably.
Consider the following:
- When do you want your child to go to bed?
- What should they do before going to bed (brushing their teeth, showering, putting their rucksack by the door, etc.)?
- What are your childrens typical “excuses” for not going to bed (needing a glass of water, going potty, needing their lovey, etc.)?
- What aspects of the nighttime routine do you or your kid enjoy? (reading books together, snuggling, catching up on the day, etc.)
Work backwards from your responses to develop a nighttime routine. So, if you want your child to go to bed at 8, you may start the bedtime ritual at 7:30. Put all expectations, including their “excuses” and bonding/snuggle time, into a schedule. “Get a final sip of water” or “put a glass of water beside the bed,” for example, could be part of the night routine.
Set Your Boundaries
Are there any “excuses” for not going to bed in your responses that stretch your boundaries? Do you claim you’ll read two novels but really read ten? Do you say, “I’ll lay with you for five minutes more,” but end up staying an hour?
Construct a Ritual
Your nighttime routine could be hectic and stressful right now. Or it might be wild and uncontrolled. Change this cycle into something quiet and pleasant with your children. What would they want to do at the conclusion of the day? Snuggle time with your mother? Do you read books aloud to your father? Pray? How about singing some songs? Keep in mind that each childrens appearance may vary. Include this in your nighttime routine.
Because they are distracting and exciting, televisions, laptops, and iPads may destroy a nighttime routine. Limiting screen usage for 30 minutes before bedtime might help your child concentrate and relax. Encourage your child to try relaxation music or audio relaxation techniques, white noise (machine or app), or CD books if they “can’t sleep” without the TV on.
Your children are crying for your attention. If you had a busy night of domestic and job duties, your kids were probably not getting your entire attention. When you insist that your children clean their teeth, they may object, thinking to themselves, “Well, at least I have her attention now.” So spend some quality time with your little ones, even if you’re exhausted.
As a parent, the most essential element of bedtime each night is…
Is to extend some grace to yourself, your spouse, and your children.
It’s not going to be a wonderful night every night. Children will get irritable. Moms will get irritable. There will be conflicts between school and extracurricular activities. However, concentrating on a tranquil state of mind as you prepare to go to bed, followed by a peaceful bedtime ritual for your children, can help everyone feel calmer and more connected as a family every day.
Sleep Aids You Can Use
Noises that disrupt sleep should be blocked out. The number of times I awoke in the middle of the night dropped when we installed a high-quality sound machine. The sound machine is left on throughout the night. We use a sound machine for all three children as of right now, and I won’t be stopping it anytime soon.
Baths might help a kid relax before going to sleep. Magnesium is found in Epsom salt, and a shortage of magnesium might hinder the brain from falling asleep. Whether or whether the child has to wash up, one of my children takes this bath every night. Bath time conflicts were minimized by instituting a nightly bath. Please do your study on how much Epsom salt is safe to use with your child.
For my bedtime talkers, this works great. My restless sleepers, who would chat to a wall for hours if they can’t go asleep, are soothed by audiobooks (try a free audible membership for 30 days here). Bedtime chatting not only keeps the child up, but it also wakes up the rest of the family.
Deep pressure touch is provided by weighted blankets or plush animals. Weighted blankets have been shown to enhance sleep time and decrease movement during sleep in individuals with insomnia, according to research. One of my children utilizes a weighted blanket on a daily basis to aid with sleep issues. Weighted blankets should not be used to sleep with infants or toddlers.
What You Should Do Next:
1. Subscribe To My Parenting NewsletterSign Up For My Parenting Newsletter for tips on creating a happier home and becoming a more positive parent. As a bonus when you subscribe you’ll get a copy of my FREE Growth Mindset Printout For Kids which is the KEY to raising resilient kids with a growth mindset.
2. Register For A Pretty Awesome FREE 60-Minute Class:Register for a free class called GET KIDS TO LISTEN THE RIGHT WAY; an exclusive FREE class from nationally recognized parenting coach, Amy McCready.
3. Sign Up For A 7 Step Positive Parenting CourseEnroll now in the most in-depth parenting class. After discovering these common sense, easy-to-implement, research-based tools you can learn how to:
- Easily get kids to listen – the FIRST time. No yelling or reminding…not even once!
- Put an end to daily power struggles. Bedtime became a breeze, and all the dawdling, chore wars, sibling rivalry, and mealtime meltdowns disappeared.
- Reduce backtalk by HALF! It’s simple once you know the secrets of these two ‘buckets.’
- Say goodbye to punishments that DON’T work. There’s a 5-step formula that works WAYYY better than time-outs.
- Feel amazing, confident, and empowered as a parent, every day. I NEVER go to bed feeling guilty anymore! (Okay, well maybe sometimes…’ mom guilt’ is still a thing.)