I have learned in my late twenties how much I truly value sleep! For me, there is nothing better than winding down and ending the night in my warm, cozy bed. I am an anxious person by nature, so creating a bedtime routine is extremely important to my overall happiness and well-being.
Getting a good night’s sleep is so important because it sets you up to have a better day the next day. When we are tired or cranky, it makes it harder to control our emotions and have a happy day. Whenever I don’t get enough sleep (or enough GOOD quality sleep), I find myself snappy, on edge, and slipping into the dangerous land of negative thoughts.
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Here are a few ways that you can create your own perfect bedtime routine and enjoy many great nights of sleep:
Ditch the electronics
I’m sure you’ve heard by now that our beloved cell phones emit a blue light that interferes with the body’s natural sleep process. To get scientific for a moment, the blue light emitted by cell phones, computer screens, and televisions inhibits the production of melatonin. Melatonin is the regulator that makes us sleepy and tells our bodies we are ready for bed. When we spend too much time before bed starting at these blue light emitting screens, we are interfering with our bodies natural rhythms and therefore preventing ourselves from getting a good night’s sleep.
If you can’t leave your cell phone and other electronics outside of the bedroom, ensure that you are limiting your screen time in the hour before falling asleep. If you use the Iphone, there is a great feature called Night Shift that dials down the blue light and turns the screen to warmer hues. If you love this feature, you can set it to go on at a certain time each night to ensure you stop looking at the blue light.
Create a cozy, dreamy bedroom
Have you ever noticed that when you stay at a really nice hotel you seem to sleep better? Recently I stayed at a hotel with a gorgeous bed that was decked in all white bedding with a cozy down comforter. After a few nights in that bed, I realized that my bed lacked the inviting, comfy nature that this hotel bed had to offer. So I did some minor redecorating and turned my bed into a mini-vacation every time I go to sleep!
First up was outfitting the bed with a Down Alternative Comforter– you can snag these for around $30 on Amazon! My bed feels instantly updated and luxurious and the best part is it was such a great deal.
Secondly, I kept with the white them and invested in some white pillow shams. I like to keep two pillows on my bed for sleeping, and two pillows in the shams that are decorative. They make the bed look so full and inviting! To keep everything fresh, when I replace my sleeping pillows I use those in the pillow shams and throw out the ones in the pillow shams. This way, I am only replacing two pillows at a time since the ones in the shams are strictly for decor.
I bought a set of white sheets, but right now I am completely obsessed with my grey jersey knit sheets. I LOVE these sheets- it is like sleeping with your favorite t-shirt all around you. They come in a ton of great colors and are super affordable, so you can change them as often as you like. I’m loving the grey and white combo- the all white comforter and shams makes me feel like I’m in a hotel but the grey jersey adds a little personality.
Set a bedtime
We are SO crazy about giving our kid’s a specific bedtime, but many adults don’t have a bedtime of their own! Do you have a bedtime for yourself? Make a set, pre-determined bedtime a part of your bedtime routine! My favorite happiness guru, Gretchen Rubin, (click here to read my review of her book The Happiness Project) introduced me to this idea of adults having a bedtime. You can read her post on why you should have a bedtime here.
Most adults need 7-8 hours a night of good, quality sleep. How do you determine your bedtime? Spend some time going to bed on the weekends and tracking when you naturally wake up. For me, I like a good solid 8 hours. That means that my bedtime can be determined by counting back 8 hours from when I need to be awake in the morning.
Remember that your bedtime is when you need to be asleep by in order to get the maximum benefit, so be sure to allow yourself 30 minutes- an hour to wind down and get ready for bed prior to your bedtime.
Wind down with something relaxing
Speaking of winding down, the last hour before bed should be used to clear your mind and prepare yourself for sleep. Many people like to relax with a good book (just remember if you read on an electronic device to be mindful of blue light.)
Another great way to relax is to practice some meditation, do a guided meditation, or recite some mantras to yourself (read a list of my favorites including Pinterest worthy images here.) I love doing a guided meditation before bed because it puts me in a relaxed state and also helps clear my mind of any anxious thoughts. You can find some great guided mediations on Amazon.com or even just by search youtube.
One of my all time favorite ways to wind down and relax is to indulge in a nice, warm bubble bath. Using lavender scented bubble bath or surrounding yourself with lavender scent increases your relaxation.
I love Dial Lavender & Jasmine Twilight Body Wash (it makes a great bubble bath as well).
Now that you are well rested, be sure to check out what happy people do before even getting out of bed every morning. Armed with your bedtime routine and this little secret, you are on your way to living your happy life every single day!
Want more happy life tips? Find out the 7 things that happy people do daily to continue on your happiness journey. And don’t forget to sign up for my e-mail list to get the latest from the Happy Life Formula delivered directly to your inbox.
If you are looking for an easy way to jumpstart your happy life, be sure to download my 7 Day Happiness Challenge Printable! It gives you 7 days worth of ideas for how to be happy in the areas of wellness, love, money, fun, lifestyle, gratitude and purpose in one handy printable sheet you can follow along with.Jumpstart my Happy Life!