How to be flexible, without completely derailing their routine.

How to be flexible, without completely derailing their routine.

We get this question a lot when working 1:1 with clients. They’re loving that their little one is now a predictable sleeper, falling asleep independently and sleeping soundly for naps and overnight.

But now they’re thinking, if we want to go away, be out for their lunch nap, or stay up later - will this unravel all of our great work?

This is where the “80/20 Sleep Rule” comes into play.

The “80/20 Rule” of sleep entails sticking to your regular routine and schedule 80% of the time while allowing 20% flexibility.

This flexibility allows the occasional late night or shifted nap timings without it impacting their overall sleep habits or throwing their circadian rhythm out of whack.

Some examples (if following our baby nap and feeding routines):

You have a baby class once a week in the middle of the lunch nap. So on these days you encourage a longer morning nap and a shorter and later 2nd nap once you return home (or let them nap on the walk or drive back).

You want to take them to a family dinner. Here you can either start their bedtime there in a pram or travel cot and transition them to their cot once home, or let them have a longer/or additional afternoon nap to help them last until a later bedtime.

You’re having a busy sight seeing day and won’t be home for any naps. Here you will just try to encourage regular naps while on the go (car, carrier, or pram) and don’t stress if they all run short you’ll likely just need to bring bedtime earlier to help compensate.

Incorporating the “80/20 Rule” is a simple way to preserve your family’s sleep while still allowing for much-needed flexibility.