Transitioning to Daylight Savings Time can be smooth – just keep calm and adjust.

Mark your calendars: Sunday, March 8th is Daylight Savings Time. Spring ahead an hour. Which means if your alarm is set to go off at 7am, your body will think it’s 6 am.

And so will the little ones in the home.

Most of the parents questioned in a Pampers survey have greater anxiety about the disruption Daylight Savings Time might have on their family’s sleep pattern than they have about April 15th – the deadline for filing income tax.

We all have a biological clock, located in the hypothalamus of the brain. We can set back a digital clock with a few clicks, an analog clock with a twist of a wrist. But our biological clocks need some support to readjust.

Set the intention that this will be easy. By taking a series of small actions you can diminish anxiety significantly. Following a simple schedule can prepare you and your children for this shift to sunlight. Like every good habit, establishing a routine step by step is the answer.

Here’s a schedule to follow so you can Keep Calm and Adjust to Daylight Savings Time:
Wednesday, March 4th: schedule naps, lunch and dinner, no electronic screen time, bedtime routine, and actual bedtime 15 minutes earlier…for everyone.

Thursday, March 5th: stick to Wednesday’s new routine.

Friday, March 6th: schedule everything half an hour earlier than usual – 15 minutes earlier than the 4th and 5th.

Saturday, March 6th: schedule everything 45 minutes earlier than usual – 15 minutes earlier than Friday. Set your clocks an hour ahead before you go to sleep.

Be flexible! If life throws you a curve …or a party on the weekend….take it as a sign that you are simply being mindful of the change in chronological time and the change in seasons. The real day to follow through on the schedule is Sunday, don’t wait until Monday when the work and school week begins.

Have a list of activities ready for a babysitter if you go out on Friday or Saturday so that she doesn’t get caught up in tv screen time as the de facto means to get through the evening. If puzzles, board games, or arts materials are out and ready to be used, the babysitter will honor that request from parents. Most caregivers babysit because they enjoy engaging with children…or at least that’s the kind of caregiver you want to employ.

See what you can do about blacking out the bedrooms. Ambient light affects deep sleep. Depending on the hemisphere in which you live, you may want to have dark shades pulled down an hour before sleep part of the bedtime ritual.

To help your body’s natural rhythm adjust Sunday morning, add a wake up routine by exposing yourself to sunlight. Pull up the shades. If you live in a place where it’s too cold to go outside yet, go to the window, look at the light of the new day and
breathe it in.

Ask your child to name 5 things he sees in the sunlight. See if he can remember them to say goodnight to before you pull down the shades or draw the curtains. Talk about being grateful for what you see.

And make sure you have your own special down time to keep calm! Download the free guided meditation “My Time” so you get a well-deserved break.

Sleepytime Club…bedtime made simple