In the run up to the end of your baby’s first year, his character will keep emerging – and you can do plenty to encourage it
As your baby moves into the last few months before turning one, you’ll continue seeing his personality and character develop.
Now’s a great time to start introducing him to positive traits such as patience, but you may also be contending with a new, slightly trickier issue that means you’ll be his number one person even more than usual.
By this stage, your baby will probably be indicating what he wants with gestures, but there’s no harm in holding off for 15 seconds or so before giving him the toy he’s after.
Tell him in a calm voice that you’re just going to wait a moment.
By doing this, you’re teaching him about patience, and also trust that you will answer his needs.
Boost problem-solving skills
At around nine months, your baby is able to start developing problem-solving and reasoning skills.
You can help him along by offering him toys that need a bit of brainwork, such as shape sorting blocks.
Ease separation anxiety
For months, your baby is happy to be held by anyone, then suddenly his cries make it clear the only person he wants is you. Welcome to separation anxiety.
‘This hits at around eight months and is a natural part of development, where your baby is starting to learn that he’s separate from you,’ says Claire Halsey, author of Baby Development Everything You Need to Know.
‘Your baby’s temperament means it will be more acute for some, especially those who are more shy or clingy.’
The key is taking a gradual approach – it’s about showing him that even though you might not be there, you’ll always come back. Leave him in his highchair for a moment while you pop out of the room but keep talking to him so he’s reassured by your voice.
‘It takes time but it pays dividends, as he’ll feel confident when you need to leave him with friends or family in the future,’ says Claire.