The dream and prayer of every mother is a good night’s sleep coupled with calmer mornings. Many things will happen that will try and interfere with this reality but it’s a goal needed to be set and worked towards.
Sleep is essential for everyone and it’s something practiced daily but with varying responsibilities many of us are left sleep deprived for at least one day per week. Insomnia haunts our lives and busy schedules, home, school, and work-related stressors don’t make it any better. It has been found that formulating a good nighttime routine will encourage better sleep and calmer mornings if followed on a regular basis. Bedtime routines have proven to produce longer intervals of deep sleep ranging from 6-8 hours daily.
This post may contain affiliate links. That means I may earn a small commission when you click on the links at no additional cost to you. You can read our entire affiliate disclosure here.
Why should I have a nighttime routine?
Having a nighttime routine fuels the body for top performance throughout the day. A minimum of seven hours defines a good night’s sleep. The reality of a working parent is that sleep is a distant memory that’s hard to attain because of pressing matters that are faced everyday between home and work life. Quality sleep or just sleep in general is a scarcity. No matter the state of your inability to sleep, formulating a nighttime routine will keep you together.
Sticking to the nighttime routine is crucial for mental and physical health. A nighttime routine or evening routine after work also proves to remove sleep related issues, effect less stressful morning routines, and a guaranteed high-spirited day of work and play.
It is noticed worldwide that many persons just take each night and flow with the wind without practicing any specific bedtime routine. But though in the absence of a nighttime or daytime routine it is believed that you have successfully winged it, the thought is just how much better it could be.
The importance of a night routine includes:
- It enhances the quality of sleep
- It encourages less chaotic mornings and more productivity throughout the day
- The brain operates better throughout the day
A nighttime routine proves to be beneficial to both adults and children.
What should I do to prepare for a good nights sleep?
Preparing for a goodnights sleep is a breeze for many persons. All that is necessary for some persons is to simply lay down and they fall asleep. But falling asleep is not the only important part to a bedtime routine but rather receiving quality sleep.
Setting an alarm to go sleep is a strategy used by many persons. It is believed that in setting an alarm it prompts a set bedtime. It’s not to become robotic but to encourage a healthy sleeping habit. When the alarm goes of it allows you to put time into perspective and aim to complete your nighttime habits.
Spending at least 15 minutes to prep for the day ahead lessens the occurrence of restlessness in the mind that interrupts sleep or even quality sleep. Spend time planning what you desire your morning to be instead of pondering about it the entire night. Completing a few chores before bed also might lessen the load of tomorrow. Within these 15 minutes its helpful to create a list that will prove to limit the stressful thoughts of being successful of the day ahead.
Remove the pent-up stress from your mind by resolving it before bed to assist in the reduction of anxiety, which takes away from a good night’s sleep. Spend some time meditating or journaling that will help to put the mind at ease and cause for sleep to be more inviting.
The quality sleep is in the wind down period. Wind down periods can be different for everyone, but the popular ones include reading. Reading helps the brain to relax in as quick as up to six minutes. What would be good is to choose an actual book instead of the phone as the screen lights tend to take away from causing the mind to become relaxed. Excessive screen use before bed affects your quality of sleep.
With all the above expressed here are 10 quick yet easy to the point ways that can be remembered to employ in an effort to prepare for a good night’s sleep:
1. Cut Back on Stimulants Before Bed
Stimulants include substances or action that directly affects the central nervous system and body by causing an increased level of alertness and difficulty to sleep. This could be coffee or other caffeinated beverages! Try to minimize your use of these substances by 5 pm.
2. Turn Everything Off Before Bed
This should be done at least 30 minutes before bed. This is said to increase relaxation and cause for a less disturbed sleep. This would include all electronics; televisions, tablets, laptops (I’m so bad at this). Opt for activities that help you to relax that do not include screen time.
3. Stop Using Your Phone at Night
Instead, make it your duty to grab a book and read before bed. This will lead to better quality sleep and the ability to fall asleep faster than if the phone was being used at nighttime. If you find this hard to do, consider moving the charging location of your phone from the bed to a less accessible place in the home.
4. Find a Relaxing Pre-Bedtime Activity
There are many activities that can be done before bed that truly help you to fall into a deep sleep easier. Reading, prayer, meditation, journaling, listening to music and taking a warm bath are the top contenders in encouraging a good night’s sleep.
5. Prepare for the morning
This keeps you a step ahead and guarantees success and productivity for the day ahead with less feelings of overwhelm. This will also help you to enjoy more of a morning self-care routine. Pick out clothes for the next day, prepare lunch bags, and have everything you can ready and by the door. This will ensure that you do not have to rush in the morning and also will calm your mind in the night.
6. Maintain a tidy space
This step is often overlooked. Many people don’t readily realize the impact that decluttering has on their life. Transforming your space to a zone free of clutter impacts how the brain can feel relaxed. While you can be productive in an untidy space it’s better to operate in a tidy space as it positively impacts how well nighttime routines will be completed. Even better a tidy space helps you to feel more comfortable to fall asleep.
7. Have a healthy dinner
A healthy dinner includes a balance of protein, carbohydrates, starches, nuts, grains, and vegetables. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle and eating a balanced meal before bed affords you the opportunity to receive better sleep producing nutrients. Teas such as chamomile prove to be very helpful to encourage a good night’s sleep because of its soothing and relaxing effects.
8. Evaluate your schedule from today/chart for tomorrow
Reflecting on the day you’ve just completed allows you to process where you could have improved and also celebrate where you succeeded. This step also helps you to process your to-do list and get it on paper so that these thoughts don’t overwhelm you in the middle of the night.
9. Prayer and meditation
Prayer never fails in producing positive results. Our conversations and quiet time with God never leave us with less than we started. In fact, I would dare to say that an effective daily prayer routine is key to an effective nightly routine. Prayer and meditation lessens the occurrence of insomnia and anxiety by allowing you to focus on the present with limited drift to the past or future. Everyday mentally taxing thoughts are broken, and relaxation is encouraged.
10. Take care of skin care and hygiene routines
This gets you into a relaxed and comfortable mode that makes way for quality sleep especially if certain essential oils like lavender are incorporated which gives added soothing effects. It encourages you to be active in the zone down process thus engaging your mind to acknowledge it. There is a level of tranquility that accompanies selfcare through skin care and hygiene routines.
How do I maintain my nighttime routine?
In maintaining a nighttime routine, it needs to be viewed as a daily chore. The maintenance of it is interwoven in the implementation of it which includes:
- Writing down all that you intend to do and conducting them religiously without pausing when things get difficult. This will create a mental rhythm and obligation that in short order you won’t need to refer to anything because it has become a positive habit that needs no reminder.
- Digital alarms are not outdated and can be handy as you prepare for bed. Use it as your alarm clock to avoid using your phone at night. It can also be used to remind you at a specific time every night to prepare for bed using your schedule.
- Exercise. Most people sleep better when they’ve exercised during the day. Because exercise tenses the muscles throughout your body, you’re better able to relax them later. As long as your doctor approves, try a little regular exercise. A 20-minute jog, a 30-minute walk on the treadmill, or even a bike ride will do. Pull out those old exercise DVDs and do a different routine every day.
- Set achievable goals. This will allow you to experience a sense of achievement at the end of each day. A difficult nighttime routine will only cause a mental block that leads to skipping and forgetting about it. Choose nighttime routines that are easy to follow through on. Nighttime routines that will cause you to feel inspired to complete them and look forward to tomorrow.
Having a nighttime routine and regularly preparing well for a good nights sleep is an important part of an overall self-care routine. Designing an effective bedtime routine will bring many nights of relaxing, restful sleep! Try some of the Nighttime rituals to revise your current nightly plan!