I love bedtime! For me, there is nothing better than crawling into my ultra comfy after a long day. I have come to really appreciate the power of sleep and the power of routines. If you have children or remember when you were a child, bedtime routines are an important part of a child's day. Why? Because it gives them time to calm down and prepare their mind and body for sleep.
Adult' could benefit greatly from having a bedtime routine for themselves. I know I sure do! That is why I wanted to share my bedtime routine with you! I will say that not every night is perfect and I do not beat myself up if I don't complete every single one of these things. It is something I strive for but I also approach it realistically knowing that sometimes its not gonna be 100%. But thats the beauty of a bedtime routine, it doesn't have to be all or nothing, any little bit is helpful.
I have been doing this bedtime routine for a little over 2 years so now it really just comes naturally, but like any habit, it took a few months for it to become a part of life. Maybe try some of the things from routine, or create your own, any routine is better than nothing!
#1 Set My Wake Up Time
I love the feature on IPhone's that allows you to set a "bedtime". You can select how many hours of sleep you want and what time you need to be up the next day and it will show you the time you should be going to bed. It also gives you an option to set a "bedtime reminder", this little reminder goes off 15 minutes- 1 hour before your scheduled bed time. Its a gentle reminder that bedtime is coming and it is time to start preparing. I schedule my reminder for 1 hour before. My boyfriend gives me a hard time about it all the time. "Oh your bedtime alarm is going off, you better go to bed" lol! He is just teasing, but it just makes me laugh because I know it can appear super lame but I prioritize getting enough sleep and this is what works for me.
If you do not have an IPhone, I am sure there is some app out there that does something similar. Or you could simply set an alarm on your phone for 1 hour before bedtime.
#2 Sip On A Warm Beverage
For me, drinking a warm beverage easily puts me at ease and helps me relax. When I have had a long day, or am feeling really overwhelmed, this piece of my routine does wonders to start to help me wind down. I especially love hot tea! I have an abundance of different herbal teas that I rotate through all the time but I often reach for Sleep Time tea from Celestial Seasonings! It just does the trick.
I also will often make this Honey Nutmeg Night Time Milk to sip on before bed because it really relaxes me and makes it easy to fall asleep.
#3 Prep For Tomorrow
If you are anything like me, sometimes it is hard to turn the mind off and not think about all of things that need to get done. I find that if I spend a few minutes each night preparing for tomorrow, I can relax more easily. I will create a todo list on my phone for what I need to get done the next day, I will often lay out my clothes for tomorrow, pack up my bag if I am heading to the office or to a meeting, I also double check what I am planning on making for dinner the next night so I can take the meat out to defrost, or make a quick grocery list to pick up the next day.
Whatever it looks like for you, 5-10 minutes of setting yourself up for tomorrow will not only help you relax more easily, but it will make getting the day started tomorrow that much easier!
#4 Put My Phone On Charger... and walk away
This one is super hard for me to sometimes, but it is important. I often will find myself mindless surfing Pinterest or scrolling through Instagram at night, and I know it is not the best thing for me. Staring at a screen keeps your brain stimulated which is opposite of what the bedtime routine is trying to accomplish.
So I started plugging my phone in to its charger and leaving it alone on a chair in my room. This keeps me from the mindless scrolling and allows me more time to relax and prepare for sleep.
#5 Skincare & Brush Teeth
This kinda feels like a silly thing to have to say, but there was a time in my life that I did not wash my face before bed and thinking about that now just makes me cringe. I try to do these before I post up on the couch to watch tv or sometimes I do it right after dinner so it's done and I don't have to half ass it when I am sleepy. Plus it also prevents me from reaching for some after dinner chocolate lol.
It usually looks like this, take out my contacts, brush my teeth, wash my face, do a little face mask and moisturize, and slather myself in body lotion.
#6 Take My Bedtime Supplements
Part of my supplement regime involves a daily cleanse supplement I take before bed and a melatonin supplement to help me fall asleep faster. I usually take these right before I climb into bed for the night.
I love essential oils and my essential oil diffusor. I love to experiment with different combos! I use my diffusor every night and it usually consists of lavender essential oil mixed with other essential oils. I keep my diffusor on my bedside table and it's light mist perfectly reaches my nose as I lay down and breathe in the magic.
I also use a lovely essential oil linen spray to spritz on my pillow case and sheets for an extra aromatherapy dose.
#8 Now It's Time To Get Comfy
I always make sure the bed is nicely made so that I can climb in feeling relaxed. I always always sleep with an extra comfy blanket on top of my comforter. Even when its hot, I just like the feeling of security it gives me and the extra layer of comfy, snuggly-ness that it provides.
#9 Gratitude & Affirmations
As soon I get into my bed and lay my head on my pillow, I use the time for some reflection and gratitude. I ask myself what happened today that made me feel good and what was the best thing about the day. I reflect on the things I am grateful for and repeat some affirmations that put me into a positive mindset before I close my eyes.
After doing all of these things in my routine and I am still having a hard time falling asleep, I will go through a bedtime guided meditation or visualization to help me get to sleep. I use the app Insight Timer, there are an abundance of sleep/bedtime meditations and visualizations available. I turn one on and usually within 20 minutes I am fast asleep.
So that is it! That is my personal bed time routine. I hope you can use this as inspiration to create your own bedtime routine. Remember the goal is to calm the mind and body and prepare for sleep, so whatever helps you do that, then do that!
Do you have a bedtime routine?
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The information in this presentation is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional, and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from the research and experience of Milan Lekay, milanlekay.com 2019