The Bedtime Routine

by Natalie Heather

If I can’t fall asleep right away at night, I tend to pull out the handy mobile and browse around on Twitter, the BBC, and the Gazette. Sometimes I’ll head over to Pinterest if I really can’t sleep.

Now, I’m sure we all do something similar to this, and we all know that it’s really not good for us. It’s been proven that the light from mobiles actually suppresses the sleep hormone melatonin, so why do we keep doing it?

I read in Women’s Health Magazine an article on how sleep deprivation affect weight loss.

that one of the best things to do to guarantee a good (or better) night of sleep, is to make a “bedtime routine”. They have a few recommendations to help shut down your body, so I decided to make a bedtime routine that included the majority of their recommendations.

At 9 o’clock, I stop whatever I am doing and turn on the kettle. Until the kettle boils, I’ll do a quick clean around (if there are dishes to be washed or put away, if there are some clothes on the floor, iron tomorrow’s shirt, sew on the button that fell off…). If there is nothing of that sort to do, I sit on the couch and start reading until the kettle boils.

Once the kettle has boiled, I pour myself a nice cup of herbal tea. I recently bought a herbal tea variety package from Twinings. Mhmm! I love trying new teas.  I continue to read (I’m currently reading Persuasion by Jane Austen) while drinking the tea.

When I have finished my tea, I run a bath and add lots of bubble bath. I have lavender bubble bath which calms me right down, and it is said that having a bath or shower before bed will cause the body to cool down afterwards, which in turn helps the body turn off. I also make a point to lightly exfoliate my face in the bath.

As soon as I get out, I moisturize and jump right into bed.

Yep, I’m sure you guessed it. As of 9 o’clock, I’m not allowed to use my mobile or computer. This isn’t a problem until I’m lying in bed trying to fall asleep. I have managed to stick to my rule of no-mobile in bed, though instead I tend to make a mental list of things I need to do.

Usually Robin and I are on very different sleep schedules: I’ll get into bed early but still be awake three hours later, while he’ll get into bed later and fall asleep right away. It’s a little frustrating sometimes, to say the least. He has the ability to just turn off on command. Every night I will offer him some herbal tea (and sometimes he’ll say yes). Now, whenever I turn off the lights, he very kindly shuts down his computer and comes to bed with me. It’s really great for both of us – we’re in bed by 10!