There are a few good reasons to create an evening routine, but one of the best is that a good plan for winding down improves your sleep hygiene, which in turns helps you get more rest. An evening routine can also help you make the most of your evenings after work even on those nights when you’re too tired or stressed to do much.
Figure Out Your Sleep
Your first step is to figure out when you need to go to bed. This is important because everything will basically flow from this. Assume you need around 15 minutes to fall asleep. Choose a time that will allow you to get 7-9 hours of sleep, depending on how much you need. There are a few people who thrive on less than this, but unless you are entirely certain that you are one of those rare individuals, plan for around eight hours.
Set Work Aside
If you work from home, frequently bring work home or have creative projects or a side business that you work on from home, choose a time that is at least an hour away from your bedtime and hopefully longer as a boundary. This is when you have to put work away. This can be tough, especially if you work in a deadline driven industry. The temptation is to always try to work more and get ahead, but you should set this temptation aside and prioritize your evening routine. Remember too that you’ll be more productive if you are well rested and less stressed.
Have a Pleasurable Wind Down
In the final hour or two before you go to bed, you should focus on low key activities that will help you relax and, eventually, get a good night’s sleep. You might want to take a shower or bath. You can brush your teeth and have a regular beauty routine that might include skin care or using castor oil on your hair. You can purchase 100% pure castor oil and get a cold-pressed formula that will nourish not just your hair but your skin, your scalp, lips and nails. Rubbing lotion on your skin can also be relaxing. This might also be a good time to light some incense or another scent that you enjoy.
Make it a Family Affair
This plan for a routine is all very well and good if you are single, but what if you have a partner or a family? You may need to get them on board. If you have a baby or very young children, you may only be able to implement parts of the plan. However, from the time your children are a little bit older, you can start to include them in this wind down, even if they need to wind down a couple of hours before you do. Build in time to your new evening routine to allow any time that you need to spend with them as well. As they get older still, they will be less dependent on you, but teenagers need a lot of rest, and you’ll be doing them a great service as a parent if you introduce the idea of a relaxing evening routine.