The key to BabyWise is starting with a eat/activity/nap routine and Parent-Directed Feedings (PDF) from the beginning as well as having appropriate waketimes, sleep time routines (see pre-sleep routine) and avoiding bad sleep props/associations. BabyWise is also a big advocate for having your baby sleep in his own bed by himself. Once again, ideally you would start doing all the above mentioned things when baby
comes home from the hospital. They can certainly be started later but it will be a bit harder to do so and baby may resist your guidance more.
When baby cries first stop and listen. Why do you think he is crying (try to learn his cries if possible) and what should you do? Listen, think, then act. You may do nothing or you may need to intervene, even if that means simply going in to baby for a moment to give him some reassurance.
BabyWise says that "there may be a brief period of fussing or crying when you put the baby down for a nap" (BabyWise, p. 131) as your baby settles. It states that "crying for 15-20 minutes is not going to hurt your baby physically or emotionally" (BabyWise, p. 131) and that if your baby "cries longer than fifteen minutes, check on [your] baby"(BabyWise, p.148). The "future trade-off will be a baby who goes down for a nap without fussing and wakes up cooing" (BabyWise, p. 131).
The exact way to sleep train a baby isn't specifically explained in BabyWise--it is up to you to decide with the information and guidance it gives you. Although it emphasizes that a little crying will not hurt your baby, it does not give you an exact period of time to to let your child cry with naps or at night like Ferber and Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child. It also doesn't exactly explain how you should reassure your baby if you choose to do so although it does mention that checking on your baby without him seeing you is often a good way to do this but that you might need to do more than this such as physically hold him or pat him. Often, how you intervene depends on your baby. Some babies can handle intervention more than others meaning that for some it helps, and for others it seems to make matters worse. Note that your baby crying more right after you intervene does not necessarily mean intervening doesn't work for your child. This is a common reaction and if you child falls asleep soon after then it is no problem, but if this seems to make your child take longer to fall asleep then obviously it is not helping.
However you decide to sleep train using the suggestions in BabyWise make sure you choose a method that you are comfortable with and remember that if you follow the BabyWise eat/activity/sleep routine, keep appropriate waketimes and start as you mean to go you will hopefully avoid most if not all crying and undesired sleep habits.
For more specifics and guidance on sleep training, visit my Sleep Training tab or my Newborn Baby Sleep Guide Post.