How a Bedtime Routine Helps You Go to Sleep Faster
Do you have a bedtime routine? Or do you just jump into bed without any thought or care? Here are three reasons a good bedtime routine can help you go to sleep faster.
Create a buffer between awake and asleep
You know how important it is to turn off work before going home and being with family. The same principle applies before you go to bed. Your brain and body need time to wind down from the day in order to be ready for sleep. When you go directly to bed from being awake and active, your brain doesn't have the time to disengage and relax and the sudden change is disruptive to the restful state you’re trying to create. Taking an hour to shut off from the day helps the brain get into the relaxed state needed for sleep.
Prepares you for sleep
Your body temperature naturally falls during the evening and through the night. This drop in temperature is a natural part of your circadian rhythm that signals the brain to release melatonin in preparation for sleep. If you are physically active too close to bedtime, it can disrupt this drop in body temperature and make it difficult to go to sleep at night. By creating a routine that includes resting and relaxing, your body can begin its cool-down process.
Creates a subconscious habit
The brain is pretty powerful. In fact, neuroscientists believe that 95% of what you do and how your brain and body react is done subconsciously. The longer you engage in the same routine before bed, the more neural connections the brain will make in relating it to sleep. Then, each time you follow the same steps, your brain will start preparing for sleep automatically, making it easier to go to sleep.
A routine doesn't need to take long, just be consistent and provide an opportunity to relax and settle down from the day. If you're looking for some ideas on what you should include in your routine, check out my free download, 15 Healthy Things to Do Before Bed.