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Managing Daylight Savings Like A Boss

Mar 14, 2023
Daylight Savings Clocks Sleep Change

I have a LOT of questions about how to navigate sleep when the clocks are about to change every year with daylight savings.


How do we navigate the day, what do I do about bedtime?

This blog is going to help you feel confident, empowered and organized leading into the clocks changing. There are quite a few things to consider whether we lose or gain an hour or sleep and will help maintain kick ass sleep for both you and your little ones.

Our circadian rhythms (our internal biological clocks) are set with food, social interaction and light. When we get them up and start their day, offer their meals and similarly when we offer dinner and bedtime at night all impact their internal alarms. Like with any transition, in the lead up to the clocks changing - it’s best to slowly and steadily change these external factors (food, social interaction and light) in small increments each day so that we are supporting their bodies to adjust when the clocks do finally change. This will reduce the shock to their system (and to ours!). 


Each year in Australia, Daylight Saving Time begins at 2am on the first Sunday in October, we lose an hour and the clocks go forward. It ends at 2am on the first Sunday in April, we gain an hour and the clocks fall back. If you aren’t located in Australia - please check the dates of the clock changing specific to your own location.

Northern Territory, Queensland and Western Australia do not observe daylight savings.

There are a few ways to approach the daylight savings change…let’s chat through your options!

Proactive approach (the A type approach)

If you’re an A type like me (and like a lot of my clients seem to be!), you’ll want to have a plan in place leading up to the clocks changing and know exactly how you’re going to navigate this change. This approach takes some forward planning and prep leading up the clocks changing. 


If the clocks are going back an hour - this tells you that on the first Sunday in April, 7am will become 6am. Unless you want an early riser (or a super early riser if your little one is already prone to it) - we want to support them and their body clock in the week leading up to the clocks changing! 


In the 6 days leading up to the clocks changing - push everything back by 10 mins per day. This includes morning star time, meals, milk feeds, naps and bedtime at night. 


Here is an example for you:


Monday - 7:00am wake, 9:30am nap, 12:30pm nap, 7:00pm bedtime

Tuesday - 7:10am wake, 9:40am nap, 12:40pm nap, 7:10pm bedtime

Wednesday - 7:20am wake, 9:50am nap, 12:50pm nap, 7:20pm bedtime

Thursday - 7:30am wake, 10:00am nap, 1:00pm nap, 7:30pm bedtime

Friday - 7:40am wake, 10:10am nap, 1:10pm nap, 7:40pm bedtime

Saturday - 7:50am wake, 10:20am nap, 1:20pm nap, 7:50pm bedtime

Sunday (clocks change early morning) - 7am wake (new time), 930am nap, 12:30pm nap, 7:00pm bedtime

Slowly doing this in the week leading up to the clocks changing will mean that by the time the clocks do change, they’re already set on the new time and you’re good to go!

If you’re preparing for the clocks going the other way for the change on the first Sunday in October and you are gaining an extra hour then you would bring everything 10 min earlier per day (for example - wake them 10 min earlier and offering naps/meals/bedtime 10 min earlier each day in the 6 days week leading up to the clocks changing).


Reactive approach (woops…I totally forgot)


If you’re a little less A type OR have simply forgotten that the clocks changing was approaching… this is for you! 


You’ve woken up on Sunday morning, your little one is up SUPER early and you’ve suddenly twigged that the clocks have changed. Don’t panic! You can do the ‘reactive approach’.


Be kind to yourself in those first few days after the clocks have changed as you’ll probably find your LO is waking early and their routine is a bit out of whack. Their bodies will natural adjust over the course of a week or so - no need to stress.


Here’s an example of what your week could look like:


Sunday (clocks changed overnight)

Sunday 6am wake, 8:30am nap, 11:30am nap, 6pm bedtime

Monday 6:10am wake, 8:40am nap, 11:40am nap, 6:10pm bedtime

Tuesday 6:20am wake, 8:50am nap, 11:50am nap, 6:20pm bedtime

Wednesday 6:30am wake, 9:00am nap, 12pm nap, 6:30pm bedtime

Thursday 6:40am wake, 9:10am nap, 12:10pm nap, 6:40pm bedtime

Friday 6:50am wake, 9:20am nap, 12:20am nap, 6:50pm bedtime

Saturday 7am wake, 9:30am nap, 12:30am nap, 7pm bedtime


If it’s the first Sunday in October, you’ve gained an extra hour and you can just soak up the sleep in the morning. Over the next week, slowly wake your little one 10 mins earlier each day and bring their meals, naps and bedtime 10 mins earlier each day to adjust back to their usual routine. 

Remember that when the clocks change - it will mean it’s either darker or lighter outside compared to usual for bedtime and their start time in the morning. Black out blinds are your friend here! This will help give you better control over their sleep environment. 


Mahalo Eco Blinds are my favourite black out blinds. They apply easily to your window or window frame with velcro adhesive and can be removed quickly during awake time to let all that lovely natural light in. Click here to check them outUse code LETSSLEEP5 for a discount.

If you have toddler using a gro clock / toddler clock - change their clock each day as well to support them to shift their sleep patterns accordingly. 

Share this blog with a friend that needs help preparing for the clocks changing. 

You’ve got this!

If you need any additional support please feel free to contact me at [email protected] to book in a FREE 15 minute discovery call to talk about what is happening for your little one and how I can help your family.

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