First you must determine if your beast is ready to be sleep trained. You’ll know he’s ready when he does the proverbial ‘carrot dangle.’ The carrot dangle is when your child all of a sudden, out of nowhere, magically sleeps longer than ever before. It’s the kind of sleep where you wake up before him and rush in to see if he’s breathing. Then you’ll know he’s ready. That is the night on which you will base your sleep training. From that night forward, you must follow these steps:
Step 1: Lucky Pajamas
What did you wear to bed that magically night? You better hope you like it, because whatever it was, it is now your pair of lucky pajamas. You need to wear this outfit every night. It doesn’t matter if your beast barfed on it that fateful night and you were too tired/lazy to change. This is what you must wear EVERY NIGHT. Failure to do so will result in a setback in your sleep training.
Step 2: Recreate Your Day
What were you doing the day your beast decided to dangle the carrot? Whatever it was, you need to do that EVERY DAY. You need to meticulously recreate that day until the training is complete. You need to eat the same things, visit the same people, play the same games, and sing the same monotonous songs. You’re committed aren’t you? Whatever it takes! You cannot veer off the track. If you do, you will inevitably suffer a setback.
Step 3: Play Dead Technique
If you hear your beast stir in the middle of the night, do not respond right away. Instead, play dead. Slow your breathing until you’re almost dead and don’t move. If you breathe or move your beast will sense you’re alive and demand you tend to his needs. I find it helpful to chant a mantra in my head while doing this. Something like: pleasegobacktosleep, pleasegobacktosleep, pleasegobacktosleep is most effective. You may even choose to pray: pleasegodmakehimgobacktosleep, pleasegodmakehimgobacktosleep. Just before you’re dead, take a very quiet breath. If your beast went back to sleep, he will not sense you’re alive, and he’ll leave you alone. If he’s still awake, just go feed him and start over again tomorrow.
If you follow these three easy steps, you should notice a huge improvement in your child’s sleep by the age of seven. If your child is still not sleeping through the night at seven. you might want to see your doctor…because I’m sure he/she can prescribe you something strong enough to deal with your reality. Good luck and Godspeed.