How do you wind down for the evening?
Do you have a nighttime ritual?
A few months ago I was having a difficult time sleeping, which is very unusual for me because for the most part, I can sleep through anything (like when I slept through a Category 3 Hurricane). But not only was I not sleeping, I also wasn’t sleeping through the night and I was waking up with incredibly painful migraines. So I began curating a night time routine to help me sleep and stay asleep. With a little bit of this and a little bit of that, I have a full nightly ritual that is easy to stick to and I enjoy. It also helps to put me to sleep like the princess who pricked her finger on a needle.
Unplug and Disconnect.
You have heard this before, you have probably read a few of the reason why shouldn’t be scrolling on Instagram or watching TV right before bed, but you do it anyways. We all have done it; and I am sure this was one of the reasons I wasn’t sleeping right. I had to unplug and disconnect before I got in bed. So the first thing I did was set up a time at night that I would completely disconnect. That meant no more scrolling on IG, no internet, No phone calls, no texts (maybe..) and no TV. Yeah…that episode you are watching right now IS the last one and you will turn off the T.V. after it is finished. Keeping a schedule and going to bed at the same time (or around the same time) every night helps get your body on a schedule. You don’t have to be on a standard early morning schedule. If you know you go to bed at 1:00 am and it's all good because you don't have to be awake until at least 10:00 am… then set your bedtime according to those hours and perform this ritual within that time frame. The goal is just to find hours that you can stick to.
“SET A BEDTIME AND STICK TO IT” as best you can.
The ‘Bedtime” I’m talking about is the one you can setup on the Clocks App for iPhone. (Trigger warning for Android Users) I don’t know what ya’ll phone can do so..
The setting on the Clock App allows you to set a ‘bedtime’ based on how many hours you want to sleep and what time you intend to wake up in the morning. There are a few added benefits that come along with using this setting in your phone over a regular shmegular alarm.
1. You can set up a ‘Bedtime Reminder’ where you will get an alert an hour before your scheduled bedtime. This allows you to actually prepare and get ready for a good night rest.
2. You automatically get a morning alarm for the time you selected as your wake up hour.
3.Based on the hours you selected for bedtime and wake time; your phone is automatically set to DND during those hours.
Once that ‘bedtime reminder’ goes off, I know I have 1 hour left before I go dark on the world. So whatever I am working on I begin finishing up. If I am watching something, that is the last episode I am watching. If I am creating, I am finishing up what I am working on and cleaning up. This is the part of the night that I call ‘Turn down Time”.