Productive days start with restful nights. Here’s how to spring clean your nightly routine to improve your energy, focus, and health.
Who knew that a productive day actually starts the evening before? It was actually a nutritional coach who helped me identify that some of the middle-of-the-day symptoms I was experiencing (ie: hunger surges, fatigue, fogginess) could be attributed to my bad habits at night.
Per her advice, I made a few minor adjustments to my evening routine and saw some major shifts in my energy, focus, and— gasp— even my weight. It turns out that my nightly TV habit that I thought was “winding me down” was actually robbing me of valuable shut-eye. Not only did it lead to consuming mindless calories, but the stimulation was keeping me up long after I finished that episode of Bridgerton.
Here are the three simple nightly routine suggestions that changed the way I wake up.
Cut the Crap
The key here is 9PM. That’s the hour I stop snacking, shut off electronics, and start slowing down. This simple practice helped me tackle my biggest sleep-inhibiting culprit: too much TV. As we all know, screen time can be addicting. And you’re talking to two LA cinephiles who consider it their job to watch ALL the shows. But all that visual noise stimulates our minds and artificial light exposure disrupts our internal clock. Binge-watching can lead to binge eating and before we know it, we’re tired the next day and our pants don’t fit.
Instead of snacks, I switch to collagen lattes (I love blueberry moon milk and golden milk lattes, good for my skin and calming my mind. I also installed LIFX lightbulbs in the bedroom— a total ambiance changer. I can dim the lights to my preferred low light, calming the vibe as I transition into my nightly routine, all through an app on my iPhone.
Implement a Self-Care Ritual
Perhaps my favorite addition to my evening routine is the prioritization of self-care. For me, that means taking a bath to calm my nervous system for a more peaceful night’s sleep. I pull out all the stops: candles, bubble bath, and bath salts to help me unwind and recharge. Small things like fresh towels and a favorite robe make the routine familiar and fabulous.
BONUS: Add in some journaling or a fun practice just for you. I love a simple, portable journal for an easy accountability. You can also use this time to meditate, stretch, or gua sha— just pick something you’ll look forward to.
Plan Your Day
It’s hard to get a good night’s sleep when you have a never ending to-do list cycling through your head. Before overwhelm sinks in, I map out the next day from AM to PM, narrowing down my top 3 priorities. For this, I use the Full Focus Planner which I love for its simplified design and coiled edges. Use Golden Coil is great, too, if you’re looking for a custom option.
Once you have your thoughts on paper, research shows worry will cease and you’ll fall asleep quicker. I also find that I wake up with so much more intention and a solid game plan for how to tackle the day ahead.
Routines are crucial to our wellbeing so it makes sense to put some intention into the habits they consist of. By swapping mindless, draining activities for intentional, renewing practices, it’s possible to reclaim our time, energy, and wellbeing.
What’s a practice you can implement into your nightly routine that your future self will thank you for? Leave it in the comments below.