BEDTIME ROUTINES AREN'T JUST FOR KIDS
Perhaps the best part about being an adult is that you get to make your own decisions. There isn't anyone telling you what to do, what to eat, or when to go to sleep. Unfortunately, too many of us use that freedom to make poor decisions, and if you aren't one of those people I'm sure you know one. So many people write about healthy eating, but let me tell you why a good sleep schedule can be just as important to your health as eating right.
Health Benefits of Sleep:
Sleeping enough each night has a plethora of health benefits. Now, a good night's sleep won't ensure a completely healthy body, nor will it guarantee that you avoid the common cold every winter. There have been studies, however, which have shown that getting enough sleep on a regular basis can help prevent major health issues such as obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and heart attacks.
"Sleep is the golden chain that binds health and our bodies together."
-- Thomas Dekker
How To Implement A Good Bedtime Routine:
So, what types of things can you do to help ensure you get the rest that you need? If you follow these steps you'll be well on your way to sleeping better and enjoying the benefits of a good night's rest.
1. Switch off your electronic devices - Turning off your electronic devices a couple of hours before bed can have a huge impact on how well you sleep during the night. Electronic devices not only stimulate your brain which means by the time you end up actually turning in your brain still needs to calm down, but the light emitted can interfere with your internal clock. Our bodies are made to stay alert during the daytime hours and rest at night. The blue light from many electronic devices imitates the light we experience during the daytime tricking our bodies into staying alert.
2. Listen to music - Listening to the right music before bedtime can calm and relax your body. Many of us listen to music throughout the day, but not often do we take a minute or two to solely listen. Choosing something calm and not too emotional will prepare your mind rest and relax.
3. Get our worries out of the way - We often have so many things to do on a daily basis that our minds are constantly bombarded with thoughts of what we need to do the next day. Getting those thoughts down on paper allows you to mentally remove them. This can help you have the peace of mind to truly relax and sleep well.
4. Read a book - Reading a book, and by that I mean a physical book (remember the whole blue light thing) can help your mind relax and escape from the stresses of your day. Whether you're reading in bed, or in another room it can help to sit down, relax, and read a little bit until you are ready and tired enough to fall asleep.
5. Be Consistent - Going to bed at the same time is an important step in any bedtime routine. Your body can be trained to go down and wake up at the same time on a daily basis. Doing so will help you fall asleep faster and stay asleep throughout the night so that you wake up rested and rejuvenated.
These are just a few of the things that you can do to help your body prepare and take advantage of a good night's sleep. It may not be easy at first, but as you work towards consistently implementing a nightly routine your body will adjust and you'll find yourself resting more peacefully. Not only will these things help you sleep better, wake up rested, and overall have more energy in your day-to-day life they will also help you have greater health. It is important that we set a good bedtime routine when we're young so that we can enjoy these benefits for the rest of our lives. So, if you haven't already implemented a bedtime routine do so; you'll love the way it'll make you feel.