Evening and morning routines help you feel your best and in control of your days. When you’ve been burning the midnight oil trying to finish a big work project or household chores, it’s only natural to want to catch up on your lost sleep. The problem is, your new day is off to a slower, later start, and your body-clock is out of whack. Before you know it, it’s 11:00 pm, and you’re once again chained to the computer, or trying to find some semblance of relaxation in front of late night T.V. before you have to get up and do it all over again! -Talk about a vicious cycle!
Fortunately, small steps can help you gain control of your waking and resting life! Your evening routine impacts your morning routine, which of course, influences the rest of your day. Below are some tips to help you feel rested, relaxed, and in control!
Here are some strategies for getting to bed at your best time:
- Plan on completing projects at least a day before they are due. (Giving yourself a personal early deadline means if it takes longer you can still go to bed on time and work on completing the project the next morning.)
- Set an “electronics off” time. That could include shutting down the computer, turning off the tv, not accepting phone calls, and stopping projects unless they are due that evening. Some ideas to help you stick to this plan:
- Set an alarm on your phone that goes off as a “shut down” reminder.
- Ask someone to help keep you accountable and maybe have 10 p.m. as your special time for the two of you to talk before bed.
- Let your friends know that you start to wind down for bed around 10 p.m. so not to be surprised if you don’t pick up the phone.
- Establish your own bedtime routine where you maybe flick off overhead lights, turn on some nice music, light a candle, and read a relaxing book—something that you can look forward to and is good motivation to wrap up.
- Spend some time in prayer and meditation before bed to clear your mind and calm your spirit for a peaceful night sleep.
Here are some strategies for getting up at your best time:
- Plan phone calls for early in the morning
- Sign up for a morning exercise class and leave all of your shower items at the gym.
- Schedule time with friends
- When you’re lying in bed thinking about how you don’t want to get up, imagine as vividly as possible how good it will feel to have done your morning routine of exercise and meditation. Recall to your mind the total sense of rejuvenation, accomplishment, and health when you start your day well.
Think of a daily “reward” for getting up on time such as picking up your favorite coffee drink or talking to a friend for 20 minutes after you’ve finished your highest priority task. Or you can pick a bigger weekly reward, for example: getting a manicure if you get up on time four days during the week. But not getting it if you don’t meet this goal.
Think of at least one thing that you’re thankful for and one thing that you look forward to experiencing that day.