Can’t sleep? Maybe your bedtime routine is preventing you from dozing off. You may also be struggling with going to bed at a decent hour, especially if your life is busy.
The trouble with lacking a proper bedtime routine is that it can lead to stress. And if you’re stressed out at bedtime, you won’t get quality sleep. When that happens, you can get sick, depressed, and struggle with other health issues.
If creating a healthy bedtime routine isn’t on the top of your list, it should be.
Taking specific steps before hitting the hay can help you be productive and happy. If that doesn’t make you want to improve your bedtime routine, I don’t know what will!
Here are seven ways to improve your bedtime routine so you can reap the benefits.
1. Don’t Eat A Big Meal Right Before Bed
Eating right before bedtime may not seem like a big deal, but it has adverse effects.
If you’ve ever eaten a feast before bed, you know how it feels to lie awake with a bloated stomach. You regret eating that big meal, but unfortunately, it’s too late.
Besides bloating, the problem with eating late at night is your metabolism slows down. And when a person’s metabolism slows down, they gain weight.
Thankfully, you don’t have to repeat this in the future. If you like to eat big meals at night, make sure to do it a few hours before bed.
Experts recommend that you stop eating two to three hours before you go to sleep. Based on that advice, it’s essential to time your meals so that you’re eating them well before bedtime.
If you do this, you’ll feel better and will be less likely to gain weight. You can do it!
2. Set A Nighttime Alarm
Setting a nighttime alarm is a smart way to remind yourself when it’s time to sleep. You may not want to do this, but it’ll prevent you from staying up all night.
If you have a habit of watching Netflix until 3 a.m., this is crucial. Your alarm will encourage you to turn off the TV or close your laptop and get some rest.
When you’re busy with work or school, it’s easy to lose track of time. A night alarm will remind you of the time so your sleep schedule doesn’t suffer.
An alarm can keep you accountable and remind you to go to bed earlier rather than later.
3. Hit The Hay At The Same Time Every Night
Sticking to a sleep schedule will regulate your internal clock and help you feel rested. So if you don’t currently have a bedtime schedule, it’s time to set one up!
Figure out how much time you need in the evenings to get everything done. That means you’ll need to fit in exercise, chores, and the other essential tasks before bedtime.
Based on how much you plan to get done, make it a priority to complete everything with plenty of time before bed. Then, you’ll have some extra time to wind down before you close your eyes.
Sleeping in on the weekends isn’t going to help you recover from sleep deprivation. That’s why consistency is so vital.
Work on going to bed at the same time every night, and you’ll wake up focused and ready to take on each day.
4. Dim The Lights
To tell your body when it’s time to go to bed, dim the lights or turn them off.
When you turn the lights down, your body starts to produce melatonin, which is the chemical your brain generates to put you into a resting state.
If you keep the lights on until you go to sleep, your body won’t wind down for a while. When that happens, it’s going to take a lot longer to fall asleep.
So, put down your cell phone at least a half-hour before turning off the lights. Remember, that’s what your schedule and bedtime alarm will help you accomplish!
5. Spent Ten Minutes Preparing For Tomorrow
Having a to-do list can make it easier to go to sleep, especially when you have a lot on your mind.
Take some stress off by creating a to-do list every evening. Spend around ten minutes jotting down some tasks that need completing the next day.
Writing down your tasks will make you feel less anxious, and it’ll be easier to fall asleep.
6. Do Some Stretching
Stretching before bed may sound odd, but it can help relieve stress on your body and muscles.
You don’t have to spend a ton of time stretching to feel relief. Even a few minutes will help.
A few examples of stretches you can try are dynamic and static stretching. But no matter what type of stretching you do, they’ll all help with stress relief.
Stretching will no doubt help you wind down for the night. This is great news because a relaxed body means you’ll have an easier time drifting off to dreamland.
7. Set Up A Relaxing Bedroom
Is your bedroom decor too stimulating? Maybe that’s why you have trouble falling asleep.
Instead of bold colors, try to stick with neutral and calming colors that’ll help you relax.
Peaceful elements, such as a cozy comforter and plants, will help set a calm mood.
You can also install blackout blinds to keep the light out, which will help you stay asleep when the sun comes up.
Peaceful decor and subdued colors are both elements of a relaxing bedroom. This type of setting will encourage better rest.
By improving your bedtime routine, you’ll find life is easier to tackle. Plus, you’ll also be more likely to stay healthy, both mentally and physically.
It may take some work to start going to bed at a set time each night, but your effort will be worth it.
Pretty soon, you’ll look forward to going to bed. And when you wake up, you’ll feel rested and ready to conquer the world!
Dominique Daniels is the business manager at Broadstone Timbergrove, a luxury apartment community in Houston, TX.