Do you want to know how to plan the time before going to bed in order to prepare yourself in the best way for rest and sleep?
Lost sleep worsens mood, slows down thinking, decreases memory, makes you more anxious. There is a long list of negative consequences attributable to lack of sleep. An article in the Harvard Business Review, a popular management magazine, gives some tips on how to manage the 30 minutes before going to bed … There is no talk of how to get dishes to wash, washing machines to load, the children to put to bed, the breakfasts to be prepared, but it’s not our fault! Are you ready?
1. Say Thank you!
Handwrite a note to thank someone. Expressing gratitude is one of the most effective ways to increase your emotional well-being. Or write some positive facts about your day in your journal.
2. Pointing the alarm
Don’t set your alarm right before bed – it will only make you anxious about the next day. Set it up for the following day in the morning as soon as you get up.
3. Count down
It starts by identifying a precise time to go to bed. If you get up at 7 am, considering that 8 hours of sleep is necessary for most people, try to be on your bed at 23.00
4. Find out if you waste time
Take note for a few evenings of what you do from the moment you get home to the time you go to bed, the first few times without changing anything. It serves to realize that, probably, there are completely unproductive things that you do without even thinking about it. Cut the time dedicated to these useless activities and try to dedicate yourself in time to those you definitely don’t want to give up, such as reading or watching some TV.
5. Invent a ritual to relax
Having identified the right time and essential activities, try to create a ritual that helps relaxation and does not make the transition from a day of activity to a night of sleep too abrupt. This “phase” should last half an hour, and you can also put an alarm on your mobile that warns you when it’s time to get ready for bed.
6. Avoid arguments
In the half-hour of relaxation in which you prepare for sleep, avoid raising delicate issues with your partner or opening topics for discussion. Postpone discussions for other times.
7. Goodbye to tablets and smartphones
Also, avoid being in front of the computer: the blue light of screens and smartphones inhibits the production of melatonin, the sleep hormone.
8. In the winter, turn down the heat
Studies show that lower temperatures facilitate sleep.
9. Take a walk
If it’s a nice evening, take a leisurely stroll. It’s a great way to unload and get ready for sleep, even a walk around the house is enough.
10. Prepare the environment
If possible, create a “spa” type environment, low lights, a candle, relaxing music …
Among the activities with which you can help you create the pre-sleep ritual, here are some suggestions: read something pleasant and not too demanding. Novels, poetry, comics are fine, never work-related things.
Some forms of meditation such as “mindfulness” (awareness of one’s thoughts) have proved useful for reducing stress and improving mood.