Nighttime habits for better sleep and productive mornings

Published On: January 4, 2019 11:10 AM NPT By: The Week Bureau

Maintaining a proper bedtime routine and incorporating some healthy and useful habits into it will result in you getting a better night’s sleep and having productive mornings.

Here are some habits that we recommend you consider adding to your nighttime routine to make the most of the next day.

Shut down your digital gadgets or at least get away from them
It might be tempting to scroll through social media one last time or watch that one funny cat video on YouTube before you go to bed, but giving into that will cost you your sleep. Digital devices emit a blue light that reduces and slows down melatonin production and that in turn affects your sleep cycle. To avoid severe effects from these blue lights, you should stop using digital devices at least an hour or two before you head to bed. 

Experts actually suggest you to put away all your digital gadgets including your smartphone and laptop in a different room than the one you sleep in. Various studies have shown that the electromagnetic fields of these electronic devices may lead to certain health issues. If you depend on your phone’s alarm to wake up in the morning then buy a loud manual alarm clock. You could also switch to the night mode option in any gadget that you are using as that emits way less blue light, if you absolutely have to use digital gadgets at night.

Write down your thoughts in a journal
This activity will help you both emotionally and in an organizational way. A lot of things might weigh you down emotionally and mentally throughout the day. And if you don’t have anyone to confide in, then write them all down in a journal. It will make you feel a lot lighter and you are more likely to get a good night’s sleep after that. You can rant or just write things that jumped out to you throughout the day. You should jot down at least one thing you feel grateful about – particularly on that day – in the journal too. Psychologists have found that people who are grateful and have an attitude for gratitude enjoy a much deeper and sound sleep. Also, you can use your journal to make a to-do list for the next day so that you stay on top of everything you have to get done.

Play some white noise
The number of white noise apps and videos is an indication of how popular it is becoming worldwide. If you don’t know what white noise is, it’s the sound that comes from combining all the different frequencies of sound that can be detected by human ears. It’s repetitive and helps the listener tune out the outside noise and focus on his/her own activities properly. So, the next time you get disturbed by the screaming kid next door or your neighbor’s dog barking, you can just find an app that produces white noise, play that, and get a good night’s sleep. MDs from American Academy of Sleep Medicine suggest that you actually incorporate playing white noise as a part of our nightly routine so that in the long run it can aware and tune your body for sleep.
Exercise and shower

Although most people incorporate both of these activities in their morning routines, you might actually benefit more from them if you start doing them at night. Some researchers from Northwestern University claim that even people with insomnia can get a good night’s sleep by doing some light exercises an hour before they go to bed. They explained that since your body gets tired from the physical exercise it will automatically shut down to get enough rest and regenerate when you slip inside the covers. 
You should also shower after that to wash away the sweat your body generated while exercising. Another advantage to taking a shower – specifically, a hot shower – at night is that it increases your normal body temperature for a while. So when you get out of the shower and are in contact with the natural colder surrounding, your body temperature drops down triggering sleep.
Get things ready for the next day
If you have some time to spare before you head to bed, then get everything ready for the next day. Simple tasks like picking out your clothes for the next day and ironing them, packing your bag, getting everything ready for breakfast and packing lunch will save you a lot of valuable time in the morning. If you finish off these small activities the night before then you won’t have to run around the next morning trying to get everything ready before you head out the door. Only leave out the tasks that you absolutely have to do the next day for the morning and enjoy a leisurely start to your day.

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