In the hustle and bustle of daily life, one important part of the day often gets forgotten about - bedtime. By the time it’s time to go to bed, all many of us can think about is crossing the finish line and getting curled up in our sheets as quickly as possible. But we shouldn’t overlook the importance of a curated nighttime routine, and how it lays the foundation for the next day.
When it comes to our nightly routines, what we should be aiming for is a ritualised set of actions that help create the perfect environment for a rejuvenating night’s rest. Here are some ways you can transform your evenings and set yourself up for a perfect night’s sleep, followed by an energised morning!
Screen-Free Wind Down
The first step is to decrease screentime as much as possible. You should aim to go screen-free for at least one hour before bed every night. That means no looking at memes, reading the news, or checking emails on repeat (they’ll be there tomorrow)!
The blue light emitted disrupts melatonin production, the hormone responsible for sleep. Instead, swap the screen for a good book or engage in calming activities to signal to your brain that it's time to unwind. A physical activity like stretching or yoga, or a mindfulness practice like journaling or breathwork, are great ways to wind down both the mind and the body.
If you’re the type who likes an afternoon coffee, or a cup of tea after dinner, you may want to find a replacement! While this might be a comforting ritual, drinking caffeine too close to bedtime could be the culprit behind restless nights.
The best thing to do is establish a caffeine curfew, giving your body at least three hours to metabolise caffeine before heading to bed. You may want to swap out the caffeinated drinks for caffeine-free alternatives, such as peppermint or chamomile, which can also help with digestion.
Grab a cup of Chamomile tea
While there’s a huge range of sleepy-time teas to choose from, Chamomile is time-tried traditional favourite that has a host of other benefits besides helping with sleep. Chamomile's magic lies in its ability to relax both the body and mind.
It contains compounds like apigenin that bind to specific receptors in the brain, promoting a sense of calm and reducing anxiety. These effects can help you drift into a deeper, more restorative sleep, making chamomile an excellent choice for those struggling with insomnia or restless nights. Chamomile tea can also alleviate stress, reduce muscle tension, and soothe digestive discomfort, making it an ideal choice to unwind after a long day.
The power of magnesium
Magnesium, the unsung hero of sleep, plays a vital role in relaxing muscles and calming the nervous system. Magnesium helps the body produce more melatonin, so your sleep is more restful and your mornings more energised. Incorporating a magnesium supplement or eating more magnesium-rich foods like nuts and seeds can pave the way for more restful nights.
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