When you’re trying to get your baby to sleep, it’s important to keep your movements as gentle as possible. Fast or startling movements will only serve to wake baby up even more. Your goal right now is to lull baby to sleep by creating an environment that encourages relaxation and rest.
The key to telling baby it’s time to sleep is to slow everything down. Try these key ways to indicate to baby that it’s time to wind down:
Walk Slowly To Get Baby To Sleep
Keep your physical movements slow and steady. Don’t rush to baby, and don’t make any sudden actions. If you are already holding baby, don’t bounce rapidly. Instead, try a gentle swinging motion combined with talking in a gentle, calming voice.
To keep yourself from speeding up, repeat a slow song in your head or count methodically. This helps your brain slow down and not get too stressed from the situation.
Baby Can’t Sleep? Try Talking Slowly and Softly
Help baby understand that it’s time to sleep by speaking softly and slowly. Avoid varying your tone a lot with the baby, as this will cause him to perk up. Instead, sing quietly or just talk, allowing your voice to turn into quiet white noise for baby.
Taper your conversation into a whisper for a few minutes, and eventually let it stop. Baby needs to learn to fall asleep without your voice, or you will become locked in a cycle of needing to be awake every time baby needs to fall asleep. This is especiall important if you are attempting any kind of baby sleep training.
Help Baby Sleep By Keeping Your Facial Expressions Neutral
Your baby is trained by nature to recognize your face, and she can recognize your feelings too. Your emotions trigger her emotions, so keep your face neutral. Avoid expressions like these:
- Smiling widely
- Getting angry
- Widening or narrowing of the eyes
When you are looking at baby, focus on relaxing your face muscles, which will help her relax. Keep your eyes soft and your mouth neutral, as it would be in sleep.
Finally, avoid changing your facial expressions rapidly, such as raising your eyebrows quickly or breaking into a smile. Baby will pay attention to your face and watch the changing expressions rather than drifting off to sleep.
Baby Sleep Solution: Relax Your Body
If you’re holding baby, keep your arms relaxed. Fold him into your body to increase his feeling of being protected, and let your own stress go. If you hold tension in your neck, back, or arms, baby will feel it and will have a harder time relaxing himself.