This is a tricky question and needs some thinking and problem-solving. That's because:
What’s really important is to look out for your baby’s cues (Check out our info card on More > Tips and Wisdom> Daily Activities )
We would never give you a strict time to practice settling, as you might end up focusing solely on time/looking at the clock and not noticing your baby’s cues. It’s best to be guided by the cues, for example, your baby might be saying, 'I can’t do this anymore.'
As adults our mood can be slightly different day to day, it’s the same for your baby. 👶
They may have managed a longer/easier time practicing settling yesterday but today their ability and needs are different.
Being a detective/ reflective parental problem solving💫 Once you notice your baby is starting to get tired remind yourself:
What cues am I seeing and what brain state is my baby in that tells me they are tired?
How did the last feed go?
Was it satisfying for my baby?
What has helped before in preparing my baby to go to sleep and how did you know it worked OK?
What did your baby do that told you it was helping them or that they knew it was a sign for sleep?
What do I know about my baby in general?
Thinking through the bigger picture of the day, for example, how busy you have both been, how feeding has been doing, whether your baby is a little over-stimulated, will help you adjust how you respond. Maybe you will need to be a little more patient that day? Every day can be slightly different and that's okay! 😊
Some things to ask yourself during settling: 💭
Am I starting at the right point?
What settling skills does my baby have that we are building on?
Is my baby calm enough to go into the cot?
Is this strategy working or helping my baby, what is my baby doing that tells me it’s going OK?
Do I need to continue with this repetition, or do I need to change what I’m doing?
What is my baby needing?
How am I doing here; am I tuned in OK?
What am I needing?
Remember it is always easiest to help your baby sleep and have settling times that are positive when neither of you get overly distressed; you are a team and in this way you will be able to practice and improve a little more each day. 👏
Sometimes 5 minutes settling can feel like an hour for you. 🕐 Doing something to ‘ground” yourself like having a drink of water or looking out the window and seeing what you can see, can help you come back to noticing your baby and helping them. You might notice you are breathing in a faster and more intense way during settling so focusing on your breathing can be helpful for both you and your baby.😊 The idea is to think about how the settling is going for your baby; sometimes how “we” think affects how we feel and what we do. Big hugs! 💛 Remember, help is just a call or click away in the app via the Free Tresillian Parent Helpline go to: More > Helplines and Support > Call Tresillian