Before anyone jumps on any bandwagons, let's get one thing out in the open first. The term "crying it out" can have many different meanings. Sleep training is a touchy subject for every single parent whether they co-sleep, take a gentle approach, or cry it all the way out. No matter your method, it's important to go into sleep training as prepared as you can be, which is why having a few ways to distract yourself when crying it out may come in handy.
Now, before I get called names and labeled an uncaring mom for even speaking the words "cry it out," let me explain my "method" first. Baby Center noted that there's no "one size fits all" method to sleep training. As most experts recommend, it's important that you don't try and sleep train your baby too early. In fact, according to Baby Sleep Site, even four to six months old is probably too early to sleep train. Most babies thrive off of being close to their mothers, so sleeping on their own might not be the best approach until they're truly old enough.
Additionally, for most mothers I know (including myself), crying it out rarely means simply leaving your baby in the room alone to work through their abandonment issues all on their lonesome. In my case, it meant setting a timer for two minutes, laying my of age baby down in her crib, soothing her, and leaving the room. She cried at first, but very quickly realized that I would always come in periodically to check on her and comfort her. Gradually, (that's the key word here — changing habits can't happen overnight) each of my children learned that they can put themselves to sleep on their own, and sleep through the night while they're at it.
So no matter your preferred method of sleep training, if it involves a few tears, you may need a few tricks up your sleeve to keep yourself busy and less tempted to intervene.