Sleep Part 2 – Bedtime routines

Sometimes, the best things we can do to help ourselves sleep better are the things we do before we go to bed.

  • Have a bedtime and stick to it
  • Have a wake time and stick to it

We create a routine around sleep for our children and expect them to sleep well. I have seen with my daughter (yep, I know, that’s a really good quality study with a cohort of 1…), now aged 3, that since we got more rigid about asleep by 8pm, instead of going up to bed at 8pm and introduced a sleep aid she can use herself, that she is sleeping longer at night, looking less purple under her eyes (PHEW!) and is much better able to get herself back off to sleep even in the early morning. And, her behaviour after ‘school’ is much calmer.

But, what about us adults? Do you have a bedtime routine? What makes you go to bed later than you intended?

Have a think about the things which mean you put off going to bed at the time you know you need to in order to get enough sleep.

Some things can put us off going up to bed – eg the thought of removing make up/contact lenses, locking up, brushing teeth, even getting undressed – because it seems so much more effort late at night.

How about doing all of that after you have finished dinner or once the kids are asleep? Then all you need to do is climb into bed, all weary and ready!

Get caught by the next episode of a fave telly programme? If you need a reminder, try setting an alarm on your phone for bedtime. Sounds strange but for some, it works really well.

You really relish that time to yourself once all the chores are done and the children are asleep. You like to protract the time, revelling in the peace and quiet, safe in the knowledge that no-one will be asking for a snack or to be read a story any minute now. And, you end up going to bed later than you need and feeling even more tired the next day.

Sound familiar? Try to turn it around. Think about sleeping as that me-time, that soul-nourishing time. Because, if you get the sleep you need, you will feel so much better the next day and you won’t be desparately hanging out for that single late hour of ‘me-time’. You might even enjoy your time with your kids more!

And, there are a dozen other reasons to sleep more and sleep better which I will be exploring in my sleep series. Join me to unravel your sleep mysteries.

I love helping people find that 1 answer which works for them. It’s part of what I do as a detective Herbalist! Actually, although I crossed that out, I often feel like I am a detective. A health, habits and how to inspire-you-to-change-what-you-want-changed detective. I use all the detail you give me about you to give me the clues which unravel your mystery. And often, like in the best whodunnit, the answer is right there, staring us in the face once we’re ready to see it.