A good night’s sleep plays a crucial role in maintaining a strong and healthy body. Not only does it help you have the energy you need to get through your day, but it also enables your body to perform the necessary functions that support an effective immune system and a sharp mind. Unfortunately, many people don’t get enough rest, often because of their lifestyle choices. Whether you’re having trouble sleeping or just want to make time for more restorative rest, developing a bedtime routine and sticking to it is often the key to success. These tips can help you create a schedule that lets you relax, unwind, and enjoy better sleep.
1. Start the Process Early
The choices you make in the afternoon and evening hours can affect how quickly you fall asleep and how long you stay that way. Eating a heavy late-night meal or consuming caffeine after lunchtime can impede a good night’s sleep. Spending too much time on electronic devices can stimulate brain activity rather than allowing your mind to feel quiet and calm. Try to limit caffeine and eat light meals or snacks in the evening. Turn off your TV and put your phone away for the night at least one hour before bedtime.
2. Develop a Relaxing Ritual
Some simple self-care can go a long way in minimizing occasional stress and promoting relaxation. There are many ways you can help calm your body and your mind, including:
- Taking a warm shower or bath
- Practicing yoga or stretching
- Doing a meditation session
- Going for an evening walk
- Applying some nourishing skincare products
- Writing in a journal
- Reading a good book
Whichever activities you choose, give yourself at least 15 minutes to help you clear your head and enjoy yourself.
3. Prepare Your Room
Even if you’re utterly exhausted from an abnormally busy day, you need to take steps to prepare your bed and your room so that you can enjoy your best sleep. Research has shown that around 65 degrees Fahrenheit is the ideal temperature for restful sleep. Light can also be an issue, so cover electronic devices as needed and invest in some blackout curtains if you live in an area with a lot of outdoor light. You’ll also need quiet, so consider using a sound machine to drown out unwanted noise, especially if you go to bed before other people in your household.
4. Plan Ahead for Tomorrow
Sometimes, it’s difficult to sleep because you have so much racing through your mind about the day ahead. You can prevent this issue by doing everything you can to get ready for the next day on the night before. Start by reviewing your calendar or schedule and make a to-do list of everything you need to accomplish. You can organize it by time or order of importance, whatever works better for you. Take a few moments to make your morning routine simpler by getting a head start on making breakfast, packing your lunch, and laying out your clothes for the day. You may even want to send an email or two if needed. By setting yourself up for success the next day, you can rest easier the night before.
5. Give Yourself Plenty of Time
Rushing through your bedtime routine can defeat the purpose entirely, so make sure you allow yourself enough time to get through each step without feeling frantic. Typically, you should give yourself at least 30 minutes to unwind at the end of the day, but an hour can be even better. To make sure you start getting ready for bed on time, set a daily reminder with some type of alert to help you stay on track.
A good night’s sleep can be much simpler to achieve when you take the right approach. No matter how you choose to customize your bedtime routine, try to stick to a strict schedule so your body becomes more accustomed to sleeping and waking at the same time each day. Above all, keep the process peaceful and calm and give your body what it needs to rest well.