Potty training is such an awesome milestone and a huge accomplishment for your child. And for you as a parent! When I potty trained my son, I spent hours reading books and researching online endlessly. Then I took all the information I learned and came up with a method that worked amazingly well – our son was potty trained in ONE DAY.
A BIG thank you to the moms who shared their tips and experience to help me come up with the below method in addition to what I learned from Lora Jensen’s 3 Day Potty Training book.
What to Expect:
- Quicker and Easier: I expected potty training to be harder than it was and to take much longer. But with this said, I was 100% all-in. It was only about poop, pee, and potty for one day straight. The results are much better when you are committed to potty training and focus solely on this.
- Accidents: Yes, there will be accidents – a lot of them . . . especially on the first day.
- To be Proud: Expect to be so proud of your little one when they tinkle in the potty, even that first little drop. If any pee reaches the potty, it’s such an exciting feeling. When your toddler starts to ask for the potty, it fills you with such happiness and pride; your baby is growing up and accomplishing a major milestone.
My Day One Results:
Here’s what I posted on Facebook to report my day one results:
Potty Training results!! I’m simply amazed. Yesterday was day one of potty training. By the afternoon until bed, not one accident! Vasya told me every time he had to go, and we zipped him onto the potty, and he went. Three poos yesterday and 8 pees on the potty. This morning another pee on the potty, and when I was taking this photo of the potty seat, Vasya climbed up by himself and went #2. Sorry for all the potty talk, but I’m so excited!!
So how did I do it?
How to Potty Train in One Day
1. Wait until your child is ready.
Our son was 2 years and 4 months old when we potty trained in one day. We had just been traveling to visit my in-laws over the summer, which involved a nine-hour plane ride, so we decided to stay in diapers for the trip.
Over the summer, we noticed some signs he was ready to be potty trained:
- He said a word for pee, “teta,” and “kaka” for poo.
- Our son started to tell me every time he peed or pooed in his diaper.
- He had a good understanding of two and three-step instructions. “Vasya, see that red block? Please go get it and place it on your tower.”
- Our son didn’t talk yet . . . only some words but enough to communicate.
2. Talk about potty training.
For a few weeks, before we started potty training, I said, “Soon, mama will teach you to go potty on the toilet like mama and papa. No more diapers!”
3. Order underwear 1-2 weeks before.
My ALL-TIME favorite organic potty training pants are from ZOOCCHINI.
I love this underwear because:
- Fun Bright colors and beyond adorable designs – your toddler’s bum will never look SO CUTE!
- Elevated embroideries and extra layers of double-sided terry for SUPER ABSORBENCY – make those oops moments better, especially early in the potty training stage when you venture out of the house for the first time!
- Organic cotton
I have nine pairs of ZOOCCHINI organic potty training pants for toddlers, but we also got some underwear at Target so Vasya could choose his potty training pants from the store the day before and be more part of the process of becoming a big boy.
4. Choose a potty.
I love this potty seat with the ladder that goes right on the big toilet! Super easy to put together, sturdy, cute, and foldable. Easy to clean too. I did not like the idea of a portable, little potty – no way to flush the mess! So we used the regular potty with this special seat with a ladder. I love the handles on the sides too. My son can independently climb up by himself.
5. Set aside three days.
Set aside three days in a row where you will focus on the potty, pee, and poop ONLY. Especially on day one, you need to plan to be with your child all day playing, reading, etc. Be close to the potty! And don’t leave the house with your little one just yet.
6. Go commando.
I researched online and read the recommendation to put my child in an oversized t-shirt and no underwear. I thought no way! So I started potty training with underwear, and he peed in them A LOT. Underwear feels like a diaper, so it was SO MUCH better when I removed the underwear.
We started using underwear on day three.
7. Wave “bye-bye: to diapers.
On the morning of day one, when your toddler wakes up, take the diaper off right away and have your child throw it away, and say “bye-bye diapers. I’m a big boy now!”
8. Say this phrase CONSTANTLY.
“If you have to go pee or poop in the potty, let mama know. Okay?” Seriously, say this every two to five minutes. You see, toddlers will forget about the potty. They will pee wherever they are, just like they are used to with a diaper on. But if you constantly remind them, they remember to tell you they need to go.
Never ask, “Do you have to go to the potty?” Your child will say no, even if they have to. By saying, “Let me know if you need to go poop or pee in the potty,” it gives the child the decision to let you know.
9. Accidents happen.
Accidents will happen. A LOT. When they do happen, it’s imperative to remain calm, but you can express disappointment. No yelling. When there’s an accident, it’s essential to say, “You had an accident. Pee and poop go in the potty. Let’s clean up.” Say this with some disappointment in your voice, but never yelling.
If you catch your child peeing or pooping, run to the potty. Even if just one drop gets in the potty, celebrate BIG!
Be mindful of where your toddler is sitting – you may want to cover your furniture with plastic bags and towels.
10. Celebrate big, but no bribes.
Giving a reward like candy or a sticker is common when your child goes on the potty, but this can backfire. My friend gave her daughter an M&M every time she went on the potty, which worked for them. But it was pretty funny when their little girl started to pretend to go potty to get an M&M – how cute is this?!
So it’s best not to give any reward every time they go. Eventually, there is no more excitement around the reward, or they will want just the reward without going on the potty.
For us, we praised Vasya A LOT when he went in the potty, and we had a celebration dance. First, we created HUGE excitement. “You did it! You went pee/poop in the potty! I’m so proud of you. You’re a big boy now! Wow, you did it! Good job.” Then we would take out our special potty toy and dance. We used this awesome multi-sense trumpet toy.
After our little trumpet music session and dance, the special potty toy is put away for the next potty party, but the excitement and celebration didn’t stop there . . .
11. The timer is your best friend.
Set the timer every 10 minutes for the first two hours of day one. When it goes off, it’s time to sit on the potty.
Sit for a few minutes.
For the rest of the day, we set the timer for every 20 minutes and went on the potty.
By the afternoon of day one, he was telling me every time he needed to go potty, but we still did the timer.
On day two, we did not use the timer. But depending on how well your child does, you may want to use the timer for the first three days. On days two and three, we continued to remind him every 20 minutes, “If you have to pee or poop on the potty, let mama know.”
If your child is still having accidents on days two and three, use the timer.
12. Venture outside of the house.
Be prepared to keep your child home while potty training. And if you are doing the training, you stay home too.
When your child asks to go potty for a whole day, or two, it’s time to venture outside the house. We walked to the park the first time, and my son had an accident. We changed his clothes and said, “You had an accident. Pee and poop go in the potty. When we are not home, there’s not always a potty, so you have to hold it until we find a potty, okay?”
The next time we went to the grocery store, and no accidents! I used our potty training pants for the stores or longer trips because they are way more absorbent than any other underwear, especially those you find at the big stores.
13. Handle sleep time differently.
Use a diaper for naps and night sleep, and when your child has 7 straight nights with a dry diaper, it’s time to use underwear for sleep time too!
Is the above not working? Every child is different, and not all will be potty trained in one day. Know that your child will eventually be potty trained. If you try this method for a week and there are still many accidents, it may be a sign you’re potty training too early. Wait a month and try again 🙂