Congratulations on Your Newborn
You get a gold star, toddlers are exhausting and amazing little people as they come into their own. Independent, curious and strong-willed. Those are the top 3 adjectives I get when I talk with parents about their toddlers and I am sure your responses will be close.
The contact bedtime battle, stalling, and avoidance of sleep. Middle of the night visits or crying out, just so you come to lay. Let me tell you something, you are not alone.
I am sure you are here for the same reason I went on a quest for sleep when my son Max was not sleeping well. I found sleep, sanity and Tiny Transitions was born, out of a passion for helping families achieve sleep in a gentle manner.
Wondering if it’s possible to get your child sleeping straight through the night?
I’ll answer that question for you in a minute…but first, I want you to do something for me.
I want you to take a moment and imagine a morning in the not-too-distant future where you are lying in bed and pop over to check the monitor because it’s been quiet and the sun is coming up. The silence must mean something is wrong.
It’s the morning.
And it’s still quiet. You fly out of bed and into their room, only to discover, yet, still sleeping soundly.
They did it.
They slept straight through the night. Not a peep.
Tell me how that makes you feel?
Relieved? Happy? Anxious? Proud?
Whatever that emotion is, I am here to tell you that it’s a reality and within your reach.
And I want to get started right now. Trust me, even as a toddler, sleep can be fixed, which goes a long way in their engagement, attention, and attitude. Keep reading, I promise it gets better.
Don’t believe that your child is too old to become a good sleeper. Yes, you can get them out of your bed and back into theirs. No, it doesn’t have to be painful, which I am sure it was if you tried to do it on your own.
Toddlers are learning so much about themselves and the world around them. They are exposed to their imagination, which can make them a bit anxious, especially at bedtime. They are learning how to get what they need in this big world and use those skills, even at 3am, if they know it means you are going to come to the rescue.
If your child has gotten into the habit of needing you in the middle of the night, wanting you to come lay with them, requesting to go potty several times or just want to climb up in that big fluffy, comfy bed with you and your partner, we can get them back on track to sleeping well, so they are at their best, both in school and on the playground.
Every toddler has a unique personality and equally unique reasons why they stopped sleeping well, or have yet to do it (Yikes – you must be tired!)
Sleep is a jigsaw puzzle that we solve together, uniquely with your sweet and fiercely independent toddler. I can teach you how to create a solid sleep foundation, coach you through these hard nights and get everyone into a terrific groove of going down without the bedtime battle, without the need for you to lay there or wake up with them after they have snuck into your bed.
The great news is, with my help, you will join those ranks with other rested parents in just a short time. It’s worth it, for their health and for yours.
There are studies being published daily that discuss the impact of poor, broken sleep in children.
However, I am going to share a simple statement no one is told or taught.
Sleep is a skill.
Everyone can learn new skills, they just have to be shown how to do it, gently and with no crying-it-out necessary. Sleep is a jigsaw puzzle that we solve together, uniquely with your sweet little one. I can teach you how to create a solid sleep foundation, coach you through these hard first years and get everyone into a terrific groove that they take with them forever.
I work with a lot of parents who want to take control of their family’s sleep now and for that, I applaud you. Many families will wait and wait and wait, believing that things HAVE to improve. Sleep doesn’t get better, in fact, with families it gets worse. Especially as a lot of things change in your baby, causing sleep regressions and setbacks that last months or even years.
If you follow the program I’m about to discuss with you, you’ll be giving your baby the skills they need to start sleeping through the night naturally, comfortably and independently.
(Yep, sleeping through the night, in just a few days.)
The Truth About a Lack of Sleep in Children
There are studies being published daily that discuss the impact of poor, broken sleep in children.
There are dangerous and long-term effects of sleep deprivation in children. I am not here to scare you. Think about how you felt when you woke this morning. That’s how your child feels too, they just can’t express it in the same way we can. Chronic sleep loss is linked to diabetes, ADHD, depression, anxiety, night terrors and much more. (and I am happy to share lots of studies that come out daily across the medical community on this, just ask.)
The fix, well, it’s simple. Really, it is.
As long as you have someone showing you what to do every step of the way, you should expect to see a wonderful improvement in their sleep and patterns that start to emerge as they grow.
There are certain foundational things you can do today that are important for setting the right environment that helps baby sleep:
- Watch the awake windows, my sleep needs guide will be something you can tuck away, as your child grows. An overtired child will eat much worse and be harder to settle, as the hormones that are triggered make them unable to calm easily or settle themselves down. Many parents don’t understand total sleep needs and even when toddlers start missing naps, bedtime stays the same. Kids need sleep, ensure you conform to the guidelines for their age, so they can feel their best. Kids who are overtired are often waking in the night, experience night terrors and have VERY EARLY wakings. (All these things I help to solve BTW…)
- Have a bedtime routine that consists of perhaps a bath or warm washcloth to the face. A bedtime snack before they brush their teeth, take a drink for the evening, a song or cuddle and then put them to bed. Creating this routine is helpful for signaling sleep is coming for children, as toddlers don’t like surprises. As much as they may protest or mush back, they actually appreciate that they come to expect the next steps, as it reduces their anxiety of the unknown.
- Set the expectations. Children at this age need to understand where the firm boundaries are. We are often loose with those boundaries and before we know it, you read 9 books and end up with 3 kids in bed with you as the sun comes up. The boundaries are something toddlers will always push, it is their independence taking shape as they learn the world around them. Set the line for them and most importantly, stick to it, that’s where so many parents go wrong. If a line can be crossed, let me assure you, kids will cross it.
- Be firm in the night. Falling to sleep independently without intervention from you is one thing, keeping kids in bed and not calling for you 4 times a night is another. So if you want your child to start sleeping through the night, you’re going to need to give them time to “settle” when they wake up during the night and realize they don’t NEED you, they WANT you. Toddler want attention, good or bad, attention is attention and if you give them too much overnight, or bow to their every command, they use that becuase they get the attention they seek and how they got it is how they will continue to get it until things change. It’s important to set expectations in the night around sleep and where kids will be allowed (AKA, they are not allowed in your bed.) If they do wake, they need to be taken back to their room, and with minimal engagement or emotion, told that it’s time to sleep. Once that behavior no longer yields the results kids want, you guessed it, they stop.
- Consequence the wrong behavior. We need to shape what is acceptable and what is not. If there is no consequence to the behavior, the behavior won’t change.
While I teach parents this in many sessions, posts and conversations we have across my various platforms, there is one main challenge,
All children are different.
If it was easy, every kid would be an amazing sleeper. When I work with families, we look at a family’s goals, parenting approaches, sleep arrangements, temperament, and your little one’s personality.
I design a customized plan that’s unique to what’s happening with your child and parenting style because that is important for your success. There is not a one size fits all solution.
The program I’m about to show you takes both your child’s habits AND personality into account and lets YOU choose the approach that will work best for them!
Hi, I’m Courtney Zentz. You might recognize me from Fatherly, Romper, Tinyhood, Thrive Global, Yahoo or guesting with partners like the Merlin Magic Sleepsuit or SlumberPod. Helping parents like you get their children sleeping through the night has become my passion.
I have an undergraduate degree in Finance and my Master’s in Marketing. After 12 years in Corporate America, I wanted more authenticity in my life. (My quarter-life crisis as I call it…) What you will care about is that I am a Pediatric Sleep Specialist, Lactation Counselor, Postpartum Doula, and I am an active member of the Association of Professional Sleep Consultants, just to name a few. I’ve been invited to present at conferences, speak to large Fortune 500 Corporations with many tired parents and make regular appearances on Podcasts® across the realm of parenting.
But the thing I’m MOST proud of (besides my own 2 beautiful children Max & Sovella,) is the fact that I’ve been able to help families all over the world to solve the very same sleep questions that you’re having right now with your child.
They are new, life with you is new, and they are on their very own journey in this big new world.