Think back to the last time you had a restful night’s sleep. What did you do before your head hit the pillow? Did you have a calming routine in the hours before you fell asleep, or did you head to bed immediately after a long day of activities? Chances are, you had some sort of relaxing time before bed, as a soothing nighttime routine is pivotal to a long night’s rest.
If you don’t know where to start when it comes to creating the best nighttime routine for you, don’t fret! Here are some relaxing additions to add to your evening to ensure you sleep long and hard.
Turn off the electronics
Most electronics emit a blue light, which signals to your brain that it is daytime. When your brain feels alert, it stops the production of melatonin, a naturally occurring chemical in your body that promotes a restful sleep. Plus, electronics can be addictive and promote worry and stress that can keep you up all night long.
As a best practice, turn off all of your electronics at least one hour before bedtime to allow your brain to naturally wind down. Go the additional step and keep all of your electronics away from the bedroom so that you aren’t tempted to check them in the middle of the night and be jolted awake.
Watch what you eat and drink
What you put in your body has a big effect on how you sleep. Stay away from caffeinated drinks and food such as chocolate, coffee, tea, and soda around four hours before you want to sleep. Also, keep your alcohol intake to a minimum, since alcohol is a stimulate.
In addition, limit what you eat right before you go to bed. Having a full stomach can make you feel bloated and uncomfortable, plus you may have to get up to go to the bathroom throughout the night. If you want to eat a bedtime snack, keep it small.
Read a book
Reading a book will help tire your mind and relax you. Ideally, you should read in an area that is not your bed, as you should try to associate your bed only with sleeping. To slowly make this transition, feel free to start reading on your couch and only head to bed when you feel sleepy. If you have an e-reader, make sure that the light is turned off or turned down almost completely.
Invest in quality bedding
Your bed should feel like it is an oasis of calm. To ensure you feel peaceful the minute you slip into bed, invest in some quality bedding and a great mattress. Your mattress should be comfortable and provide you with much needed support. Consider options such as a yogabed mattress, but don’t forget to add a mattress cover to protect it for years to come.
When it comes to sheets and blankets, if you are a cold sleeper, consider fleece or flannel sheets. For warm sleepers, silk or satin sheets can help to regulate your body temperature and lull you to sleep faster.
Meditate and practice breathing exercises
A great way to calm your mind is to meditate and practice conscious breathing exercises. Just spending a few minutes with a blank mind will put you in a calm headspace and ready for a night of relaxation. Same goes with regulated breathing; it is a great way to really wind down all together.
With the help of these practices, you’ll have a soothing nighttime routine in no time at all. Get ready for the best sleep of your life.