As new parents, you’re no doubt feeling overwhelmed and out of sorts. How do you really know when Baby should eat? And when do you put your little one down for a nap? Establishing schedules can help. Here’s how to establish a peaceful and effective routine for you and Baby
Why are routines important for babies?
Routines give babies and toddlers a sense of security and stability. Routines help babies and toddlers feel safe and secure in their environment. Young children gain an understanding of everyday events and procedures and learn what is expected of them as routines make their environment more predictable.
When to start a routine
Don’t even think about creating a routine for the first two months — your infant is still adjusting to life outside the womb, and you need to take your cues from her for what she needs. Trying to keep a baby this age on a strict schedule can do more harm than good. For instance, you may end up making her go hungry too long, which could affect her weight and brain development. By 3 months, however, most babies can better follow a routine.
The Importance of Flexibility
While establishing and maintaining routine has a wealth of benefits, it’s vital to also remain flexible. Spontaneity and creativity are important factors in a child’s life. For example, the breakfast dishes can wait if there is an exciting picnic in the backyard or a special Saturday fleamarket happening at your son’s school.
Remember to stay sensitive and adaptable to the needs of each child (and adult). When a schedule becomes too regimented or strict, the benefits will be reduced, and children may feel controlled by it rather than freed by it (which is the ultimate goal).
Advice for working moms
You can’t realistically work your schedule around your baby’s all the time. And that’s fine. You have to leave at a certain time to get to work, and evenings have to adjust to your work hours, too. Keep that in mind as you figure out when everyone needs to be up in the morning so you can work in some downtime with your baby before you leave. And if you’re getting her up early in the morning, she may be ready to go down for the night by 6:30 or so. That doesn’t leave you much time for anything but a quick dinner and a bath between the time you get home and when she goes to bed. But if she’s wiped out at the end of the day, don’t keep her up to spend more time together. Plan to snuggle with an extra book in the morning instead.
The Key to a Good Routine
This may be so simple it goes without saying… but the key to a good routine is keeping the routine. It can be tricky to remember everything in order when you’re beginning, but once you get the hang of it, routine will be second nature. It can seem very difficult to get started doing or keeping a routine when you do not have one at all. Here are some ways you can learn to keep your routine.
As with anything, if you want something to work, then work it. Keep pushing what you’ve decided to do. If it doesn’t work then change it up a bit and keep going. Move forward. I assure you 100% that a routine will work if you keep at it.
So here is a routine one f our baby and kids mum for her daughter to help guide you into the new year and new life with baby.
*This routine can go well into 18 months
You can use the above as a basic guide, then find what works for you and your baby, who is a unique individual. May you find your daily routine that brings peace, harmony and a loving rhythm to you and your little one’s lives!