Posted on 24th October 2020 at 15:43
It’s bedtime. You’re on the home run to a bit of peace, a little brain space, a moment of ‘alone’.
You’re channelling every last ounce of patience and serenity you have left into the perfect bedtime. You’ve read your Big Sleep programme. You’re calm. You’re cool. You have one trillion percent got this. Feeling like a Rockstar. A sleepy Rockstar.
And yet, they know. They know you’ve got somewhere else to be and they definitely don’t want you to go.
Whether you’re hiding a snazzy ‘out out’ outfit under your dressing gown or you’re in your PJs, ready for a night in front of the telly, they don’t care, they just know you’ve got plans.
How do they know?! you might scream internally, as the tell-tale signs of a fussy bedtime emerge.
How do they know?!
Our limbic system, the part of the brain involved in our experience of emotions, is still developing and maturing right into early adulthood. The amygdala is part of that system and its job is to alert us to threat.
Since when did wanting to watch Netflix turn into a threat for your child, you might ask. But hang tight; It’ll make sense in a moment.
The amygdala is a bit like your over-sensitive smoke alarm. (Or is it just us setting it off on the daily?!)
Our kids are exceptionally intuitive, right from birth, and that intuition is deeply woven between connection and attachment. So, when we feel like we are putting on the greatest performance of our lives (hand me an Oscar, babe), hiding the tiredness, the frustration, the guilt; they know.
When they pick up on these tiny wavelengths, it sets off their smoke detector. The threat? Separation.
Yep, we know you’re just a floor down and you’ve got one ear on the kids at all times, but it seems like an eternity away for them.
They crave closeness and security more, and they don’t understand it either because it is such a subtle and yet intrinsic part of their connection to you.
Even though it feels like it sometimes, it’s not a conscious decision to prolong bedtime or behave poorly. (There’s more on self-control vs. self-regulation in our programmes.)
So how do we get ahead of this?
Well, a bedtime routine has many positive roles, but at The Big Sleep Company we believe the primary focus of a bedtime routine is to facilitate connection and closeness before the longest period of separation - Sleep (I know, we hear you chuckling! but that full nights sleep will come, we promise!).
By really filling up their ‘Love Tank’ before bed, they feel calmer, more secure and loved. The perfect recipe for a smooth bedtime.
Utilise the techniques and approaches found within our programme to slow down, soak up and sleep well.
If you would like to find out more about how we can support you with our reassuring and realistic approach, please join our mailing list.
Tagged as: Bedtime Routines
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