Last week, I shared my morning routine, so for this week I wanted to share my night time routine!
For the longest time it would take me forever to fall asleep. I would toss and turn for hours, stare at the clock, scroll mindlessly though my phone, think about everything that I needed to do the following day, eat for no reason, and even get out of bed and sometimes work! I also would wake up 4-5 times a week around 3 AM so hungry and suffer from terrible anxiety attacks. They were so mentally exhilarating that it would cause me to stay up for the rest of the night. I knew I needed to establish a night time routine and make it a habit so I could sleep better in order to have a more productive day, because on the nights that I could not sleep the entire next day I was irritable, experienced migraines, would crash around 2 PM, my digestive system was terrible, terrible being an understatement, and I had NO energy or motivation to do anything! My brain was mush.
I do not have a set “bed time” every single night for many reasons. Often times, I take a later yoga class or an evening walk after dinner if I couldn’t fit one in during the day or I might be working a bit later on a few things or lastly, I don’t necessarily like to force myself or put pressure on myself to always go bed at a certain time; my body knows when it needs to go sleep and I just adjust. I find that as long as I stick to a routine I still can get a peaceful night sleep. So, even if I go to a later yoga class and come home at 9 PM, I may take a bath and sip on a turmeric milk in the bath and go to bed at 10:30 but do everything in my list before class, but if I am home all night everything might shift early and I might be lucky enough to be in bed by 9PM! No matter what the time is; there is always 1 thing I do every night and that is have a turmeric latte and I have found a new love for one with Copper Cup....
So here is a look at what my night time routine consists of:
- Clean space: after I finish watching a few TV shows or my work for the evening; I begin to clean up my space: put away laundry, dishes, put away my computer, unplug, really just put away everything and anything that is screaming CLUTTER! This helps my mind get in the process of wrapping up the day, calming down, and I truly believe that if you have a clutter free space you will have a clutter free mind. That way, when I wake up, I wake up to a clean, organized space and do not have to one, waste time in the morning cleaning and two, wake up to thinking negatively about how messy my small apartment is! You actually wake up in a good mood as to how freshly cleaned your apartment feels!
- Prepare breakfast, lunch, snacks & sign up for workout classes: Although I work from home every single day, some days I will be out for a few hours. If that is the case, I like to make sure that during the hours, if needed, any meals or snacks are prepared and ready to go! I also like to sign up for a work out class too; normally this is just yoga or I like to decided that I’ll walk in the morning or the evening. This way, it saves time in the morning; prepping any food and my work out for the day is planned too! I am then, more likely to go! Obviously, if I wake up and my body is tired, something has come up with work, or I would prefer to go to a later class, then I will change it or not go for the day; without making myself feel guilty about it. I always like to “plan” my workouts the following day, but when I wake up, I prefer to see how I feel mentally and physically too! Some days I need a morning class to clear my head and other days my body needs one at night to melt the stress of the day away.
- Make a to do list for the next day: To help calm my mind, rid it of any lingering thoughts about what needs to get done for the following day or what I didn’t accomplish; I like to make an outline of the following day. I never schedule it down to the minute, but I will set aside time for when I will check emails, work on projects, take breaks, work out, etc. I like to make a list of before lunch and after lunch. Usually in the morning I like to get important things done and out of the way and then in the afternoon save that for writing, recipe testing, or other projects that can be a little more relaxing to me. This has helped me go to bed with a clear head and not constantly think about what the heck I am doing the next day while laying in bed, just running over my to do list 100 times so I do not forget anything!
- Turmeric Milks. My all time favorite thing! They are so soothing, calm my mind, relax my body, warming, anti-inflammatory, and I swear this helps me pass out!! I desperately try to drink this without watching tv, scrolling through IG, checking emails etc. and usually have this while I am taking a bath or just laying in bed right before I am about to fall asleep! After the first sip I am always like “siiiiigh” and a few minutes later I am calm and ready to sleep! IF you have one while taking a hot bath, it can get pretty hot, but a little water after will help you cool off but it will also make the best sleep just be careful you either don’t pass out in the bath or fall asleep…I usually make my own little mix, but recently I have been loving the ones from Copper Cup because they are already pre made and all you have to do is heat up water or your favorite milk and pour it in! Seriously, how easy, simple, and convenient especially when you are traveling! The ingredients are great too; it only has 3 grams of sugar in each little packet and contains organic turmeric, vanilla, pink salt, organic cayenne pepper, organic ginger, organic black pepper, organic coconut milk powder, and is sweeten slightly with organic coconut sugar (low glycemic too!). I love adding the mix to the stove with almond milk with a little bit of cinnamon. I started carrying around a few in my purse as well as my travel bag too because they are perfect when you are out and about. You can always find hot water or some almond milk heated up at a local coffee shop and add this in if you are trying to cut back on coffee; however I do love, a shot of espresso, a packet of copper cup, mixed with almond milk over iced! It is the perfect treat. If you want to give it a try, they were kind enough to give me a discount code so you can use my code: BLAIR10 for 10% off your order! Just click here!
- Epsom salt baths: My love for these runs deep. I will admit that sometimes it is a process and every time before I run the water to get it the right temperature, add the salts, maybe light a few candles, and do my favorite face masks too, I am like oh my god this is effort, but while I am relaxing, it’s the best feeling in the world! No phone, warm water, and completely zoning out! I take these after I have eaten dinner, watched a few TV shows, cleaned up, made my to do list etc! This is usually last on my list. I have found that the later that I take them in the evenings or the closer that I take them to the time that I want to go to bed, the more sound I sleep. I am so relaxed and actually drained from the bath, that I want to immediately lay down in bed. If you were to take one, then watch tv, check emails, eating a large meal, your body is bound to wake up again and be thrown off. Its’ best to take them later! Normally I like to take a bath for 40 minutes, but most nights (4x a week I strive for!) I take them for about 30 minutes; to make the time pass, I’ll do a face mask, drink my turmeric milk, listen to music, read, or just relax.
- Lemon water + ACV & bed time snack: After my bath, I will fill up a huge glass of water with lemon & apple cider vinegar and eat a small snack if I am hungry. I keep the water by my bed because sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night and think I am hungry, but I am really just dehydrated and this water with the lemon/ACV is great for digestion, keeps me regular, and my digestive system in check. It makes me feel good knowing that I might be drinking a little bit of it during the night AND it is the first thing I am reaching for in the morning. This way, I do not have to get out of bed and prepare it! It is already done and I can sip on it while in bed! As a side note, I like to a have a full glass of one before breakfast anyways, so it works out perfectly that it is already there, waiting for me. If I am hungry, I will eat a small snack; you can see some of my snack suggestions here!
- Yoga stretches: Before bed, while in my bed, I might do some light stretching. I listed 6 poses here, that are great for helping you fall asleep and with anxiety! You don’t have to be a yogi to do these and you can seriously do them in your bed while you are laying there!
- Phone on do not disturb: Last but not least, my phone never comes with me in my bedroom! I don’t even have a TV in there! I actually put my phone on do not disturb at around 8 PM and leave it in the kitchen all night. Before I did this I would lay in bed for HOURS looking at god knows what until 2 AM and then it would be the first thing I would grab in the morning and just lay there wasting time! Plus the light is terrible for you and will just keep you up! The constant buzzing would also keep my awake at night and now I don’t hear it! Ok, so if you use your phone as your alarm? You can still put your phone on silent and the alarm will still go off or buy an alarm clock.
After reading this, you might think that this seems like too much, it takes too long, and that you just do not have any time at all. BUT I do a lot of these at once: While I am making dinner, I also clean up/ organize my space and I may even prepare any food for the next day especially if I have leftovers from dinner (or this is when meal prep comes in handy!). I also keep a running tab of what needs to get done throughout the day and it makes it easier to make a to do list for the next day. While I am running a bath, I heat up turmeric milk, put my phone on silent and put the water by my bed! I think I set aside about an hour or so at night to do all of this but it saves me multiple hours tossing and turning every single night or waking up in the middle of the night and staying up!
I try to do this religiously 4x a week because other nights I am either out, traveling, and to be honest, I don’t want to do everything because I am actually just do tired (lazy)! If that is the case, I make sure I do a few of the 8 mentioned above: phone away, turmeric milks, clean up my space, a relaxing face mask, or a few light stretches to calm down my body. Any little bit helps and once you begin to establish a routine it will become more regular for you. You’ll then look forward to this each night it will be more intentional versus something that is a chore.