5 Essential Tips for Successful Potty Training

So, my little miss sweet Eliana is fully potty trained. I was dreading this milestone which is why I waited this long to transition her although we've really been potty training since she turned 2. I'm happy to say it went smoothly and was easier than I thought.  She pretty much got potty trained in one weekend. We can home from school on Friday, changed her into her big girl panties, and that was the beginning. We had a couple of accidents that night which was expected. I think the first one caught off guard as she was just standing there and you can tell she was surprised when she noticed it was leaking onto her body and the floor. We had a couple more accidents over the weekend and by Monday, she was good to go. I was surprised when I picked her up from school and she had gone the whole day without any accidents. Proud mommy moment.

Her teachers had told me just the week before that they feel she's ready and I knew she was as well. With them pointing it out, there was no more waiting, so I took a deep breath and made the change.  In that first week, I think we had one or two more accidents at school and those were during play time. I mean what kid wants to stop playing to take a potty break. Since then, no more accidents, even during nap time and overnight. Although I still put her in her pull ups at night just because sometimes she finds her way into our bed in the middle of the night. Staying dry during naps and bedtime means going right before and right after she wakes up.

Here are my 5 essential tips that aided our successful potty training experience.

-First and foremost, make sure your child is ready for this big transition. It just makes the process easier and less stress for both you and your child. It’s like the saying goes; you can lead a horse to the water but you can’t make it drink. If you child has no interest in using the potty, then the transition is going to be harder. So, the trick is to get them familiar with the potty and all it entails at an early stage. Like I mentioned, Eliana started playing potty when she turned two but it was nothing serious, just pretend which slowly grew into occasional usage until we fully transitioned.

-Don't force it. This sort of goes along with the first point. It is not a competition and there is no gold medal for first kid to be potty trained by any age. So, take your time and make it a fun experience for everyone involved.

- Be consistent, be committed and be present. I’m lucky ours went as smoothly as it did, but with that still comes some key factors.
 Being consistent is not switching between panties and pull ups during the day. I am personally guilty of this one early on, before I noticed and cut it out. At home I'll put her in her panties and any quick trip outside, I switch to pull up. This can be confusing for the child and delay the process rather than seeing progression.
Be committed in terms of time and energy, as least for the first few days or weeks. She tells me every time she needs to go which requires me dropping whatever I was doing at the time to attend and escort her to the potty. Now, she’ll still tell me and go by herself or request I come with her. In some cases where I can tell by her body language she waited too long, I scope her up and off we go.  
Being present is as easy as encouraging her while she sits there, whether it’s an easy one or hard one. Just be there to provide support and keep cheering her on.
-Offer rewards. Mine comes easy; all she needs is lots of cheers, applause, hi-5’s and woo-hoo with fist in the air. I'm sure if I offer her yogurt every time as well she’ll gladly accept. So, find what your form of rewards is, stickers, candy, ice cream…etc

- Lastly, having the essential and right products helps as well.

Here are some trusted products that works for us and why we love them.

Our in-house potty. It’s easy to handle, clean and take apart. She even sometimes clean up after herself with supervision. It 3-in-1 so we’ll definitely get a long use out of it. She’s been using it as a steeping stool long before she officially started using it as a potty. The middle part also  comes off  for when she transitions to the adult potty for extra support and balance.

To-go potty - At this stage, they need to go when the need to go. They pretty much can't hold it. Which means you have to be ready as well whenever, wherever. Getting to or finding the closet restroom is not always guaranteed, trust me, I know. For all those scenarios, this little to-go potty comes in handy. Very easy to use and ready in seconds with just one click extension of both legs. Is stays permanently in the car but for extended outings, It’s something extra to lug around. I know it won’t be forever and it saves both of us from mishap, so it's worth the little trouble for now. When I’m carrying one of my big tote bag, it fit perfectly inside. What I do to make the set up even faster is having a bag already installed so when she needs to go, I'm not just fiddling with trying to get the bags open and fitted over the seat.  Also closes very easily after use. I like the bags that come with it because it has a little padding that soak up most of content, but a regular grocery bags fits and will get the job done as well. Another great thing is that the potty comes with a pouch that fits the potty and a couple of bags nicely. One thing I will like to point out is that since it is a to-go potty, it is reasonably lower in sitting height than a regular potty. So that may take a bit of getting used to for your child.
Readily available set of wipes in the car

And lastly, of course I have to accident proof the car, well more like her car seat. You never know until it happens in this case and I'm not waiting to find out whether it will or it won’t. Just want to be prepared.  I bought this car seat protector to line the inside of her car seat. In the event of any accident, all I have to do is remove the liner and wash as opposed to disassembling her whole car seat.
Hope you find these tips helpful in your potty training journey. Be sure to share any tips you might have as well.

 Have a great day.

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