An urgent message for sleep-deprived parents: You don't have to suffer through "cry-it-out" OR attachment parenting's "co-sleeping." There's another way! Parents spend a great deal of time and energy coaxing, negotiating, singing, and swinging their children to sleep. Yet studies show that sleep deprivation among young kids is rampant. Babies and young children get an average of 9.5 hours of rest per night when experts agree that they need 11-12 hours. A mountain of research links drowsiness to academic, health, and psychological problems. It turns out that over time, all that cajoling and soothing can actually have the opposite of its desired effect. The harder we try (with the best of intentions and boatloads of love), the more we get in the way of our kids' natural sleep development. The Happy Sleeper shows parents how to avoid and undo cumbersome sleep habits, putting their babies and little kids on track to a full night's sleep. Heather Turgeon, a columnist for Babble.com and writer for the National Sleep Foundation, and Julie Wright, a psychotherapist and highly popular parenting expert, teach parents that babies have an innate capacity to self-soothe, as well as the brain machinery to sleep well. So why do many families struggle at night? Most do what works today, but don't notice when it's no longer needed tomorrow, and then push harder when it becomes a hindrance the day after that. Parents get stuck working overtime with fanfare and tricks to put their babies and children to bed—lying down with their kids, re-tucking and refilling water glasses endlessly. Mindfulness—the practice of using focused attention, being present and open—has proven effective in many realms of health and serves as the foundation for the techniques in this book. Using these methods in a thoughtful, attuned, and loving way, parents transfer the role of soothing from themselves to the children. The Happy Sleeper features a foreword by neuropsychiatrist and popular parenting expert Dr. Daniel Siegel, author of Parenting from the Inside Out and the New York Times bestseller Brainstorm.