We’ve all read articles about what healthy people do in the morning, but what about bedtime habits that make us healthier?
This is just as important because it helps wrap up the day and sets the tone for a fresh start in the morning. By creating a new bedtime routine using these 7 simple steps, you will be sure to notice a change in both your health and happiness. At the very least, it’s worth a shot. Try adding one at a time to build on and improve your bedtime routine.
1. Get Organized
One of the keys to maintaining a healthy lifestyle is to always be prepared. You’ll feel organized and won’t need to stress in the morning. Make sure you have what you need set out on your bedside table. Glasses, water, alarm, chapstick, whatever you know you need to be easily graspable should live right next to your bed. Rework your bedtime routine to include getting your exercise gear for the next morning sorted out, iron your work clothes if needed, gather any important paperwork, set a timer on the coffee pot, and prepare your lunch for the following day. Doing whatever you can before bed to save yourself time and energy in the morning will eliminate the stress of running around and trying to take care of everything as you’re also aiming to get out the door and be on time. 2. Switch Off Technology One Hour Before Bed
How many of us say goodnight to your loved ones and headed to bedtime only to spend the next hour laying there checking Facebook and Instagram? Before we know it, three hours have passed! By switching off the technology an hour (or two) before bed, you have time to wind down without distractions. Research has proven that the light emitted from a phone screen miscues the brain and encourages a sense of feeling awake. Not only can the artificial light emitted from phones and computers have a serious effect on your body clock and encourage sleep disorders, but putting the phone away will give you more room for quality time with your loved ones to truly connect. 3. Keep a Gratitude Journal
A great way to bring further happiness into your life is by actively and regularly expressing gratitude. Studies have shown that keeping a gratitude journal not only increases happiness but reaps other benefits including better sleep and fewer symptoms of illness. By setting a small amount of time aside each night before bedtime (or even every few nights if that works best for you) to jot down some things from your day that you are grateful for will remind you what a blessed life you lead but will also help remove any lingering negative thoughts from your mind, making it less likely that you’ll dwell on issues that might keep from falling asleep. Best of all, by keeping a record of what you feel grateful for, you have the option of looking back over your entries every now and then for a lovely reminder of all you have to be grateful for.4. Stretch it Out
Leg cramps and sore backs made it difficult for to fall asleep. Stretching helps lengthen tendons and muscles and can reduce the frequency and severity of cramps ensuring you get a better nights sleep. Not only does stretching sore muscles help but by giving your whole body a good stretch you relax everything and release any built-up tension. Your body will feel like it’s melting into bed afterward, and it just might become your favorite bedtime routine. Remember this is not the time for a dynamic, active yoga practice. Choose restorative, calming poses and stretches to help you lower your energy level.
We live in a crazy world, don’t we? We are constantly being bombarded with information via the television, social media, the internet, friends, and work. It’s no wonder so many people feel overwhelmed, stressed and anxious. By meditating before bed, you are slowing down your brain activity which results in a deeper and more peaceful sleep. This is perfect if you do have issues falling asleep; before you know it you will be sleeping like a small, well-fed child. Even if you already incorporate meditation into your day, give it a go before bed and see the results yourself. You don’t need some fancy set up with candles and a special pillow to sit on. The benefits exist even if you just sit on your bed or on the floor with your bed supporting your back. Just intentionally breathing with closed eyes and the goal to slow your brain down will show you remarkable results. 6. Curl Up With a Good Book
Reading before bed is good for you in so many ways. First of all, it calms the nerves by eliminating excess sound and vision stimulus (exactly the opposite of what you get from watching television). As we discussed earlier, television has noises, flashing lights and far too many distractions for when it’s time to wind down for the night. Reading a good book before you go to sleep helps you escape to another world. Reading also improves brain function, your memory, and our thought processes overall. You don’t have to get deep into a fantasy novel, just switching off the main lights, switching on a Himalayan salt lamp and curling up in bed with the newspaper, magazine or a short story will reap benefits beyond a good night’s sleep.7. Get Enough Sleep
We all could learn a lot from cats and dogs. And one of those habits is getting enough sleep. The most important thing we should commit to every night at bedtime is to simply make sleep a priority. Sounds obvious, right? But with stressful jobs, busy social lives and children to look after, ensuring you get enough shut-eye can be difficult and there have been many articles written on the dangers of sleep deficiency and its relationships to stress, weight gain, and unproductivity. An easy way to do this is to consistently incorporate going to sleep at roughly the same time every night into our bedtime routine. Going to bed late, getting 4 or 5 hours of sleep and snoozing your alarm three times in the morning is the worst thing you can do. Incorporating the above steps into your bedtime routine will help let your body know it’s time to slow down and get you in the right mindset for sleep so you won’t be laying on your back staring at the ceiling for hours. Make sure you have all you need for comfort. A warm comforter, good pillows, and no bright lights shining in through the window will all help in the effort towards getting enough sleep.
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