Why Adults Need Bedtime Routines

This week I am focusing on SLEEP because it is one of the things that my Health Coach helped me get back on track post kids that changed my quality of life and set off a cascade of improvements in my health and wellbeing as a newish Mom.

I was interviewed recently by Thrive magazine on "Why You Should Make Getting A Good Night’s Sleep A Major Priority In Your Life, And How You Can Make That Happen."

Here I wanted to focus on one key point that we as Moms are very conscious of for our children but then don't apply the same thinking to our own wellbeing: the importance of the bedtime routine in order to induce a good night's sleep. We are creatures of habit and our systems all thrive on a consistent routine.

Here are 10 things to consider around your bedtime because a Bedtime Routine is so important even in adulthood:

1. Create a bedtime ritual, even just a few minutes to signal to your mind, body and specifically your nervous system that you can ‘power down’. Reading? Bath? Essential Oils? Self-foot massage? Gratitude journal?

2. Set the tone for deep rest and restoration. Dim the lights, lower the volume, spritz lavender on your bed, cool your bedroom.

3. Try to minimize screen time right before sleeping. Or at the very least be more mindful about the kind of tech you are including into your bedroom, feel good TV before bed, a meditation app or binaural beats to soothe you to sleep might be great ways to wean you off watching Netflix crime shows way too late.

4. Avoid watching the news in the evening, or really you could consider tuning it out altogether during the week. Catch up with the news once a week - you will be blown away how much time you are saving and how your anxiety levels decrease making it easier to sleep.

5. Keep your work, computer and things that remind you of work out of the bedroom. Consider charging your phone in a different room or at least putting it on airplane mode while you are sleeping.

6. A face mask helps us relax by keeping light from waking us, but also gently pressing the eyeballs back immediately signals to the nervous system that it is safe and time to rest. You can just try using a rice + lavender eye pillow to get to sleep and let it fall off the side, or a mask that goes around your head and stays on all night.

7. Keep a notepad beside your bed for your 'to dos' that won't let you sleep. By writing things down with a pencil on paper the message is received by your brain that 'you've got it' and will let your brain let it go and not ruminate on what you need to do the next day, week or month.

8. Invest in some delicious sheets and a good mattress. Good sleep is really the most important thing you can do to increase your immunity and stay healthy.

9. Bedtime stories for adults. Listen to a relaxing podcast or audiobook or an app like Calm that has bedtime stories for adults. We need to be lulled to sleep, no need to get frustrated, just put on something that will relax you to sleep.

10. Invest in some delicious pyjamas. I lucked out, for my wedding shower all the ladies got me lux pjs, they don't have to be skimpy, but they do need to be super soft and high quality. Start with a pair of silk or organic cotton pjs and go from there.

BONUS: go to bed at the same time every night, ideally by 10/10:30pm. This allows you a solid 8 hours nightly and all of your systems will thank you for the consistency. If you are a ways away from that time slot, make a gradual shift over months or weeks, shifting by 15 minutes a week.

Make bedtime a ritual, not just a routine.

Getting quality, consistent and restful sleep is the essential to your physical, mental and emotional wellness. It is more important now than ever.

Need help getting your bedtime routine in place? Email me at meganswanwellness@gmail.com.

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