Making Changes to Sleep Associations

Workshop and Guide

A holistic guide to making changes around how your child falls asleep. Perhaps rocking, bouncing, or feeding to sleep has become more of a chore than a cherished moment.

It's time for a change – one that honors both your needs and your child's emotional well-being.

 This webinar and guide will equip you with effective tools to establish a solid foundation for the transition, support your child through the changes lovingly, supporting them at every step and create a personalized plan that aligns with your child's needs, your family dynamics, and your ultimate goals.

Does this sound familiar?

  • You're helping your child fall asleep in a way that no longer enoyable - perhaps it's causing you pain or frustration. 
  • You still want to help your child fall asleep but the current patterns are no longer working for you or your child.
  • You want to make the change in a way that is respectful and responsive to your child's emotions

Everything you need to gently change how your child falls asleep and naps and bedtime an enjoyable experience for everyone

What you'll learn

  • How to lay the foundation for changing how your child falls asleep; effectively preparing both your child and yourself for the change
  • How to best support your child through the change by understanding their attachment needs, temperament and sensory needs
  • Three different strategies you can use to gently transition your child to a different way of falling asleep.
  • Create a personalized plan that aligns with your child's needs, family dynamics, and ultimate goals.
  • Tons of practical tools get started with confidence and troubleshoot the most common challenges that families encounter when changing sleep associations
  • And so much more!

What you'll get

👉 Workshop: Over an hour of video content, guiding you through effective tools to establish a solid foundation for the transition, support your child through the changes lovingly, supporting them at every step and create a personalized plan that aligns with your child's needs, your family dynamics, and your ultimate goals.

👉Comprehensive Guide: Dive deeper into the strategies and techniques covered in the webinar with our comprehensive guide, packed with actionable tips and tools to support you on your journey to better sleep.

You got questions, I got answers

No, I do not use sleep training in my approach to sleep.

Sleep training takes a behaviour-based approach to sleep, changing how a baby communicates their needs to their caregiver instead of changing sleep itself.  This includes full extinction, “cry it out,” timed or incremental soothing, and “parent present” methods like the chair method or pick up/put down.    

When I support families to better sleep through this membership, it doesn't include any methods that limit how a parent responds to their child’s cries, either in increments or by having the caregiver respond in only specific ways.  

Instead, we take a completely holistic perspective of sleep, assessing all aspects that may impact your child’s sleep challenges to address the root cause and meet your goals.  

Everything from  

✔  Sleep environment
✔  Routines and rhythms
✔  Day and nighttime sleep balance
✔  Feeding and nutrition  
✔  Underlying medical concerns  
✔  Sleep science  
✔  Emotional wellbeing  
✔  Family dynamics and relationships  
✔  And more!  

Along with developmentally appropriate expectations and strategies to support your well-being as a parent.  I support you to find the root cause and optimize sleep through responsive parenting and sleep science, with the ultimate goal of you feeling empowered and confident in supporting your baby to their best sleep.  

I place immense value in you trusting your instincts and tuning into your unique child, meeting their needs, resulting in sleep solutions that you can feel good about.  And in this way, you will have real, lasting results, not only with sleep but in your parenting journey as a whole.  

In short, I believe there is a better way to improve sleep for the family, one that honours a child’s emotional and physical needs and supports a child’s attachment needs.    Sleep is not a skill that can be taught; it is a biological function.  No sleep training method truly teaches sleep, connecting sleep cycles or self-soothing – it merely changes how a baby communicates with their caregivers.  

Sleep is a vulnerable state for all humans, and even more so for our babies.  It’s crucial that children go to sleep from a place of calm and feeling connected to you, not out of defensiveness from being left alone.   Separation is one of our children’s most wounding experiences; it is only through connection and attachment that true independence can develop.  Sleep training methods are designed to use separation and lack of parental response to change sleep behaviour, at the risk of a baby’s emotional needs being unmet.

Sleep training goes against your parental instincts.   It never feels good to hear our little ones cry or be upset, and they depend on us to provide them calm, safety and security in their world.   They rely on us to respond to them and to meet their needs. As caregivers, we are biologically hardwired to feel activated when we hear our little ones crying for us.   Even while we are making changes, supporting our children’s emotions is a crucial part of their emotional and psychological development.

Babies are designed to wake at night and communicate their needs to their caregivers to have them met.  It is vital that they do so and that they can trust us to respond!  Unfortunately, sleep training only teaches a child that their cries will be ignored, that we won’t come when they call and leave their underlying needs unmet.  

We have significant research that shows that traditional sleep training does not result in a baby who wakes less frequently or who has better sleep quality – instead, it merely changes how the baby communicates to their caregiver when they do wake.  

I believe that babies need responsive, nurturing care both day and night and that there is a way to maximize a parent’s rest while honouring a baby’s emotional and physical needs.  Improving sleep for the family in a way that understands biological norms, is aligned with realistic expectations, and addresses the root of sleep disruptions.

Instead of merely focusing on sleep behaviour, I take a truly holistic perspective of sleep and assess all factors influencing sleep to support your family’s rest.

All strategies and plans are founded in responsive, attachment-focused methods, designed to get to the root of sleep challenges and give you the tools you need to make changes that align with your child and values.  

Remember, you are the expert on your baby.  My job is to guide you, offer suggestions and strategies, shine a light on any areas of concern, recommend solutions based on my experience, encourage emotional connections, build stronger relationships, and support you along the way.  

My approach is designed with developmentally appropriate expectations and the latest research in neuroscience, brain development and attachment.   There are no generic or arbitrary rules or guidelines, but instead is tailored to your unique family. 

The concept that babies can learn how to “self-soothe” by being left to cry or when separated from their caregiver is a complete myth.   Babies are neurologically incapable of self-soothing or calming themselves from a state of stress without the support of a caregiver.  

True self-soothing is an ability that babies learn through first BEING soothed.

That is just how brain development works.  

The foundation of this ability is the baby’s experiences of their caregiver’s timely, sensitive, consistent and appropriate responses to their distress (also the basis for a secure attachment).    They learn to self-soothe when they learn to trust that you are there to help them whenever they need you and that you can read their cues and understand their communication.    

We bring our calm to meet our children when they are stressed or upset.  By meeting our children with calm, soothing, responsive care, we support their nervous system to calm.  We aid them in this process, building connections in their brain so they can regulate themselves effectively in the future.   It happens through the developmental process, not as a skill they can be taught.  

Children learn how to regulate their emotions by borrowing the mature adult brain and being provided coregulation and support.  From this foundation of first BEING soothed and having regulation modelled to them, children can learn how to do it themselves when their brain develops the capability to do so.   After 1000s of experiences of being soothed, their brain slowly gains these skills.  

When a baby is in a state of stress, if they call for you, they need you to respond, and by having this understanding, we can do so confidently, knowing that we are setting our children up for their best chance at effective future regulation.  

It is a reality that most babies (and even toddlers!) need some level of parental support to fall asleep.  However, suppose there are certain aspects around soothing strategies that aren’t sustainable for you.  In that case, I absolutely encourage you to make changes around those aspects while still finding a way to support your child’s need for your presence to feel calm and safe as they enter sleep.

For example, it takes a long time for your child to fall asleep, or the support they prefer is making you uncomfortable or causing pain (for example, bouncing on a yoga ball hurts your back).  You can change elements that no longer serve your family while meeting their need for your support in ways that work for you both.  

When we support our children’s sleep, we build lifelong sleep health by:

✔ Lending our adult brain, so infants enter sleep in a rest and digest parasympathetic state of their nervous system
✔ Create an association between sleep and a feeling of safety and comfort
✔ Facilitate brain waves in sleep that are more restorative
✔ Influence less night waking
✔ Help them go to sleep faster
✔ Influence their childhood, adolescent and adult sleep to be more consolidated, better quality, reduced insomnia  

Depending on your baby’s temperament, some babies need more support to fall asleep while others prefer more space.  If your baby communicates that they need your support, that’s simultaneously normal, expected AND challenging.  

Due to their immature nervous system, babies often need the soothing presence of an adult, and this isn’t something we can necessarily change without consequence.   Our presence makes all the difference in their developing brain, supporting their lifelong mental wellness with nurturing care and support.  Nurture is what builds the brain towards resilience and builds sleep health.

Supporting a child to fall asleep independently is a marathon, not a sprint.    

Your child doesn’t have to fall alseep independent of parental support in order to sleep well.  Regardless of if you feed, rock, bounce, hold or cuddle your child to sleep, it will never create sleep problems or additional wakes.   This isn’t a skill that they must learn; supporting your child to sleep, however you choose, does not hinder them from sleeping well.  

However, there are often times when parents want to make changes around how they are supporting their child to sleep, either because their current settling strategies are no longer sustainable for them or because they want to gently encourage future goals of falling asleep independently.  Perhaps transitioning from bouncing to holding, or from feeding to cuddling to sleep.  This is absolutely something that I can support you with.  You can absolutely change how you support your child to sleep without removing your support all together; knowing that it is normal for babies, toddlers and even preschoolers to enjoy the warm comfort of your presence as they drift off to sleep.