What to do before sleep at night
Successful people appear to have one thing in common: they follow a tried and trusted nighttime routine before going to sleep that sets them up for a fulfilling and productive day ahead.
But what if you’ve adopted some habits that are not helpful before going to bed at night, whether it’s drinking alcohol or scrolling through Instagram? With these five tips, you can undo any habits that stop you from getting the high-quality sleep you need.
The importance of a good night’s sleep
During sleep, your body performs vital restorative functions such as repairing muscles and tissue. Your mind consolidates the memories of the day so you can process this information and learn new information more effectively the next day. Your immune system is also given a chance to strengthen itself as T-cells which combat viruses, are produced during sleep.
The quality of your life can also improve as, during sleep, depleted energy reserves are filled through the release of glycogen. You’ll have more energy to get things done at work while your family and friends will enjoy the more rested and present you.
5 Things to do before bed to help you sleep
There are a couple of things you can add to your ‘how to sleep well’ checklist. By practising these habits daily, you can improve the quality of your sleep.
1. Create a schedule
Scheduling your day the night before will make it easier for you to organise your tasks with a to-do-list. You will know exactly what to prioritise and accomplish which gives you the peace of mind to sleep soundly knowing that you are ready for the day ahead.
2. Pre-bed diet
You can eat your way to a good night’s rest. Before going to sleep, nourish your body with foods such as walnuts, fatty fish, turkey and kiwi fruit. These foods help to regulate hormones such as melatonin, which, when released, enables you to fall asleep. For more inspiration, take a look at our list of the best foods to eat before bed and include these in your diet.
3. Reflect on your day
Take some time before going to bed to look back on your day. Make a note of what you’re grateful for, which can be anything that was meaningful to you, like time spent with family. Reflecting on your day helps to cultivate mindfulness before bed, which helps to make your sleep more restful.
4. Do some stretches
Stretch your limbs before going to sleep with some restorative yoga or stretching exercises to soothe aches and pains and help your muscles relax. Doing light exercise before sleep helps the body wind down, paving the way for refreshing rest.
5. Have a bath
Create an atmosphere of serenity and calm. Run a generous bubble bath, light scented candles and play soothing music. Taking a hot bath before going to bed can make you feel at ease, lower your stress levels and ready your body and mind to drift off to dreamland. Plus, we could all do with a little more self-care!
What not to do before going to sleep?
We all do it, but by staying up until midnight binge-watching a new series, we’re sabotaging our sleep. The light emitt,ed from the screen, called blue light, can prolong your attempts to sleep.
Downing a cu,p of coffee is another sure-fire way to keep sleep at bay as caffeine is a stimulant and can keep you awake for up to six hours from the time you drink it. Eating foods like cauliflower, soya and red meat can delay your journey into dreamland. These foods take a while to digest and you may feel uncomfortable and bloated, making it a struggle for you to fall asleep.
Allow time to relax and unwind
Gone are the days when pulling all-nighters and staying up until the wee hours was the in thing because we want to show the world how hard we can push ourselves. Today, burnout is a reality that affects many people who are struggling to find the perfect work-life balance.
We know it’s not always easy undoing bad sleeping patterns, but getting great quality sleep will help you feel rejuvenated and ready to tackle the day with a clear mind and a well-rested body. By following a schedule, eating well and squeezing in time to do some stretching, you are setting yourself up for sleep success.