I know, I know, it feels so nice to sleep in until noon on a Saturday (or more like 6:00 a.m. if you have a young child), especially when we as a society are so chronically sleep deprived. Unfortunately, keeping an irregular sleep schedule prevents our body’s “internal clock” from getting used to when it’s supposed to be sleepy time. Unfortunately for those of you who are late-night partiers on the weekends, waking up at the same time every morning – even if you didn’t sleep enough or sleep well – is one of the best ways to improve your ability to fall asleep and sleep soundly. Adulthood can be a drag, huh?
Our brains just love patterns and routines. Creating a relaxing bedtime ritual trains our brains that it’s time for bed and helps us relax and get ready to fall sound asleep. What kinds of activities make good pre-bed rituals? Try relaxing, screen-free experiences like going through and turning off or dimming the lights in the house, taking a nice warm bath, meditating, and reading (just nothing too saucy!), all of which are excellent ways to relax the body and mind for sleep. Make sure to use this same ritual each night and remember that it may take some time for your brain to catch on.