Remember when you were 20 and you were super pumped because fall back meant AN EXTRA HOUR OF SLEEP! Yay! We all rejoiced, maybe we stayed out later? Either way, we relished the idea of a luxurious night of rest.
Well. Sorry. You’re not 20 anymore. And you have kids. So you’re getting up at the same time. For a little while anyway. But you will survive this and here’s how.
STEPS TO SURVIVE FALL BACK:
Leave the clocks alone
It’s not as psychologically upsetting to see your little one up an hour earlier. Get up. Have your coffee, live your life and THEN change your clocks. You’ll want to cry less this way.
If, for example, your little one usually takes a morning nap around 9:30, you will adjust this to 9:00 for the three days after the time change. It will be a bit of a push for your child, but not so much that it will cause much damage to his/her schedule–and do the same for your afternoon nap.
On the 4th day, put your child to bed at the ‘new’ nap time.
If your babe usually goes to bed at 7 p.m put him/her to bed at 6:30 p.m. for the first three days following the time change. (This will FEEL like 7:30 to your child.) It may be a little rough, and they may be slightly cranky, but only for a few days.
On the 4th night, put your child to bed at the ‘new’ 7PM.
If you have children over the age of two and you’re not using the Gro Clock, you can put a digital clock in the room and put a piece of tape over the minutes so they can see if it is 6 o’clock or 7 o’clock, but they cannot see the minutes (which can confuse toddlers).
Just set the clock forward half an hour so at 6:30 it says 7:00 and let them get up a little earlier than normal, knowing that, by the end of the week, they will be back on track and sleep until their normal wake-up time.
If you are using the Gro Clock, then just make sure to adjust the wake-up time by 30 minutes for 3 days, then 45, then the hour.
Do. not rush in soon as you hear your baby waking up, because you do not want to send a message that getting up at 6 a.m. is okay now. So if she normally wakes at 7:00, but is now up at 6:00, you will wait till 10 minutes after the first day, and then 20 after the next, then 6:30 the next day and, by the end of the week, your baby’s schedule should be adjusted to the new time and waking up at their usual hour.
It will take about a week for your child’s body to get used to this. It takes everybody’s body roughly one week to adjust any kind of change in sleeping habits so be patient with your little one, and yourself 🙂
This should get you happily through the week of not so great fun! You can survive this with some careful planning and adjustment of expectations!
Don’t worry! Your ‘sleep in’ now comes in the spring with ‘Spring Forward’ when our kids don’t know that 7am is now 8am! Ha! Take that kids! The glorious rewards of parenting. For additional tips on the time change conundrum, call me and let’s chat!