How To Use Your Bedtime Routine To Help You Sleep Better, With These 7 Small Changes
There are few things as comforting as an effective bedtime routine, but stress and too much late-night time on our devices can interfere with getting enough rest. Having some structure in place as we wind down from the day can help regulate our circadian rhythms, while signaling to the body that it’s time to rest soon. But if you find that you’re in a bit of a rut with your sleep schedule, or you’re struggling to find a bedtime routine that works well for you, there are some things you can try to switch up your bedtime routine for better sleep. After all, good sleep is key to feeling good and functioning well during the day.
According to Hello Giggles, Pinterest pins featuring hacks for getting better sleep at night are at an all time high, with a 157 percent increase in bedtime routine pins in 2018. Clearly, a lot of us need some help to sleep better, and the solution might be as simple as a slight tweak to your bedtime routine. Whether you want to get to bed earlier so that you can hit the gym in the morning, or simply need more sleep to feel better, you’ve got this. Here are seven ways to switch up your bedtime routine so you can snag more snooze time.
1. Power Your Devices Down Earlier
According to the National Sleep Foundation, using tech devices before bed can interfere with melatonin production, which is the hormone that regulates sleep. By avoiding blue-light from electronics like laptops and phones an hour or two before bed, you can dramatically improve your sleep.
2. Work Out Earlier In The Day
If your evening routine includes a workout, you might be winding your energy up instead of down as the day draws to a close. By getting a good workout in earlier in the day, however, you'll be tired out by the time evening hits. Try getting your high energy activities in before lunch, and start slowing the pace down after dinner.
3. Try A Bedtime Stretching Routine
4. Shift Your Bedtime Routine In Increments Over Time
By slowly shifting your bedtime so that you're getting to bed earlier each night, you can train yourself to shift your bedtime routine over time, according to PsychCentral. So, if you normally go to bed at midnight, but you want to hit the sack at 10:30, go to bed earlier in 15 minute increments each night until you reach your bedtime goal.
5. Swap Your Shower Routine
If you typically shower in the morning, why not try swapping that for a night shower instead? A hot shower or bath followed by stepping into a cool room can help us decrease our body temperature, which helps promote relaxation, psychiatrist and sleep medicine specialist Dr. Alex Dimitriu told Bustle in an earlier article.
6. Try Dot Journaling
Hello Giggles notes that dot journaling, or bullet point journaling, can be a great way to organize your thoughts before bed. By jotting down everything you need to do and remember for the next day, as well as you worries, observations, and ideas, you can keep your thoughts from racing as you're trying to get some shut eye.
7. Stick To A Schedule
One of the best things we can do to help set our circadian rhythms to sleep at regular times is by sticking with a schedule, according to the National Sleep Foundation. By going to bed and waking up at the same time every day, our bodies gradually adjust so that we can fall asleep more easily over time.
Whether your goal is to stop hitting the snooze button, read a book instead of scrolling Facebook before bed, or just getting better sleep at night, small adjustments to your bedtime routine can make a big difference. So start with one or two small changes, and before you know it, you'll have a soothing bedtime routine dialed in in no time.