Here are some general guidelines for babies: sleep, play and feeding routines. These guidelines show how you progress through the nap cycles until you get to approximately 6 months where ideally you are on 2 naps a day with 3 awake times for around 3 hours.
In my experience it is more about doing ‘consistency’ rather than hit and miss. When you left school and began a career you didn’t do it and get where you were in the business world by hit and miss. You got there through repetitive, consistency and hard work. Basically that is what ‘mothering’ is about.
All babies and parents are different so if we make a foundation then from there it can be adapted to fit your baby and yourself. In my experience I always work on a nap time of 1 ½ hours – some babies will sleep longer, some babies will have different length nap times and some babies take longer to get to this amount of sleep.
When looking at how to do ‘mothering’ remember when you had sex with your partner you were nurturing each other, while you were carrying the baby in your womb you were encourage to nurture, however once we birth the teaching turns to non nurturing and how often do you hear if you hold your baby then you are spoiling your baby or your baby is manipulating you. These two words do not fit into a nurturing mothering world so lets leave them at the front door and do what our instincts tell us and that is to hold and nurture our babies.
Negative sleep cues are not feeding or holding your baby. To feed a baby before they go back to bed does not creat a feed/sleep association as long as you feed, then swaddle/or sleeping bag and then into bed. Holding a a baby is to nurture so it is important to nurture before the go to bed, however it is also important to remember not to do anything in arms that youcannot do in a cot so avoid rocking, walking, bouncing instead however a nice small movement such as cupping will replace the other movements that cannot be replicated in a cot. Cupping can be done in either arms or a cot.