You know those nights when you just can’t fall asleep? You toss and turn. Your mind spins and whirs. Why yes, sweet brain, let’s replay the scene where we shoved a foot in our mouth at Thanksgiving dinner—on repeat. For an hour. Thank you for that! And yes, perhaps we should get up to make sure we didn’t leave the stove on… even though we haven’t cooked since Tuesday.
If a busy brain has left you restless, the problem may actually be what’s happening before you slip between the sheets.
We humans are creatures of habit. Once we’ve settled into something (especially something fun), we don’t like to stop. If you’ve ever had to take a child home from the playground, you know the epic resistance (and epic tantrums) that can accompany the end of a designated fun time. For most adults, late evenings are that fun time. After a busy day, we get a chance to relax, enjoy ourselves, maybe watch some TV.
As bedtime approaches, we start to feel tired. We know we need a good night’s sleep to be at our best the following day. But we still feel a weird resistance to the idea of heading to bed. That’s our transition aversion at work. Some have come to call it “revenge bedtime procrastination.” We just want to hold onto a little more time for ourselves, even though we know it’ll bog us down tomorrow.
One of the best ways to ease that transition is by improving our sleep hygiene with a simple bedtime routine.
Not one that’s packed with drudgery and household chores, but one with cozy, soothing rituals we’ll actually enjoy. I’ll guide you through it in this quick video.
How to Create a Bedtime Routine You’ll Love
A few big takeaways:
- Sleep is crucial for better health and improved energy. But many adults struggle to fall asleep because they procrastinate bedtime or can’t seem to switch their minds off.
- Most adults are also getting less sleep than they think. That’s because they count the time spent in bed, not the time spent actually asleep.
- Practicing sleep hygiene in the form of a soothing bedtime routine can be make the transition to sleep easier. I recommend creating a wind-down ritual where you actually tuck yourself in like a toddler.
Now it’s your turn. What’s one thing you’ll add to your bedtime routine? Let’s share our ideas in the comments.