There’s something therapeutic about establishing a bedtime routine. Each night you know what to expect, and it makes you feel good to get it done. When done daily, it also sends signals to your brain that it is almost time for bed, as it knows what to expect when the last task is done. Everyone seems to have their own routine, depending on what they value the most. Some focus on creating a lengthy skin routine, while others may choose to spend some time meditating!
Creating and maintaining your own bedtime routine is great for nourishing your own mental and physical health. Not only does it give you a structure of what to expect at nighttime, but it also benefits your physical health by cleaning yourself up! Everyone should have a routine of their own, not only for their health, but so they can fall asleep comfortably knowing they are taking care of themselves.
A bedtime routine does not have to be a 20-step process with many different sprays and creams. You will benefit the most from doing the tasks that matter the most to you. The important part is creating this routine and sticking with it to help you in unwinding from a long day. Here are some examples of self-care bedtime routines that you can add into your own routine.
- Substituting your night cap with tea. Plenty of people choose to enjoy a glass of wine or beer after a long day. Try switching this up with a hot cup of caffeine-free tea. Some great teas that promote a good night’s sleep are chamomile, lavender, lemon balm, and yogi bedtime tea. While you may think alcohol may help you sleep better as you fall asleep faster, it does not allow you to stay in a deep sleep. Drinking tea before bed instead simply relaxes the body and mind completely, and there is even one called “sleepy time tea” specifically to help you fall asleep!
- Create a skin care routine. Like mentioned previously, a skin care routine can be great to do at bedtime. It washes away any sweat, oil or makeup from the day. Apply moisturizer after a thorough wash to help nourish your skin and keep it soft and healthy.
- Meditation is a great way of relaxing your mind and body before bed. Doing this can possibly reduce the hormone cortisol, which is associated with stress. Meditating before bed is signaling to your entire being that it is time to unwind and get ready to catch some Z’s.
- Reading. This is another great option. Keeping a hard copy of a book (the blue light from electronics has been shown to overstimulate you and keep you awake) by your bedside and reading a chapter each night before bed is a good way of taking a break from the constant screens we tend to watch. Partaking in bedtime reading can lower your heart rate and decrease the tension in your muscles, lowering your stress and helping you fall asleep faster.
- Hot shower. Hot showers are a go to when it comes to bedtime routines. The hot water helps lower your blood pressure and eases feelings of anxiety. Showering in low light with music can be therapeutic and a great start to your routine. Extra points if you have clean sheets on the bed, because there is no better sleep than after a hot shower with warm and smell good sheets!
- Try aromatherapy. Using essential oils, such as lavender or chamomile, in the bedroom can help you relax further as these are calming scents. Aromatherapy has been known to reduce anxiety and promote feelings of calm. Try this at bedtime paired with a sleep mask for a restful night of sleep!
We spend a lot of time sleeping, so maintaining a set bedtime routine should be important! What you do before bed heavily dictates on how you will sleep at night. They key is to try to avoid overstimulating yourself before bed through activities, heavy food or blue lights (electronics).
Taking up some of the routines listed above is a great way to help yourself unwind after the day. If these aren’t quite what you’re looking for when it comes to a solid bedtime routine, it truly is what you make of it! Substitute reading for an adult coloring book or meditating for yoga.
Do what you enjoy, and think will help benefit you before getting a good night’s sleep.