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Ever since moving to Japan, I have been able to delve into creating a life and a routine that works best for me. My self-care routines have become an immense part of my life. They ensure that start and end my every day with happiness & health, making me enriched to work really hard on my goals.
So why do so many people have an evening routine? How can putting an hour aside each night enhance your well being so much?
In my personal experience, a healthy & beneficial night time routine helps to get the body & mind into a mode for sleeping. It avoids procrastination (like scrolling through Instagram for an hour – guilty as charged), makes time for the things that matter, improves focus, creates higher efficiency & productivity for the next day and keeps focus towards goals. It is so important that it even has a knock on effect to how you will start your next day!
My evening routine usually starts at around 8pm on weekdays and sometimes earlier on the weekend. However, I always try to stay as consistent as possible to get the same hours sleep each night & help my body to naturally know when it’s time to get into ‘night time mode’.
The last hour before bed is the most important hour in your evening so I will be letting you in on my top tips on how to make them oh so blissful and relaxing…
1. Dim The Lights
The first thing I do as part of my evening routine is to turn off my main lights in my room and put on my wave lamp. It has calming colours that create a peaceful atmosphere.
Dimming the lights is the perfect way to start telling your body to get into night time mode.
2. Take A Shower, Clean Teeth & Moisturise
I take a shower every single night without fail. When working with kids, you never know what kind of germs or dirt might’ve gotten onto you, so I always get nice & clean before I got into bed.
I also take off my makeup and wash my face with a facecloth in the shower.
When showering, I take the opportunity to meditate for a short time. I sometimes close my eyes and imagine that I am away from the city and that I am under a waterfall, enjoying the simple pleasures of nature. I imagine that the water is washing off all of the stress & any negativity from the day.
When I get out of the shower, I brush my teeth and moisturise my face.
3. Get In PJs
I think it’s super important to have clothes that are just for sleeping in.
I generally wear lightweight, cotton PJs and sometimes fluffy socks depending on the temperature.
By having specific clothes to sleep in, it helps you to create the right sleeping environment.
Avoid wearing things such as bras & tight clothing to bed. It’s so important to let your skin breathe and body move freely while you sleep; tight clothing may cause problems with blood circulation & wearing clothing items such as bras to bed can lead to the underwire or straps to cut into your skin. This can cause irritation, welts and in worse cases cysts.
4. Tidy bedroom
The next thing I do as part of my nighttime ritual is to tidy my room. This includes cleaning up my desk, putting away clean washing, hanging up & putting away my coats, scarfs & hats. This step usually only takes a few minutes but damn, does it feel good after!
I’m a massive advocate for the ‘tidy space, tidy mind’ lifestyle. By having a quick tidy really helps me to wind down at the end of a day and allows me to wake up to a clean, fresh & tidy space.
As a minimalist, I find too many things on show in my room, especially my desk area, makes my head feel cluttered.
5. Plan Clothes & Pack A Day Bag
There is nothing much worse than rushing around on a morning feeling like there is a million and 1 things to do! On top of that, you can’t decide what to wear and you haven’t even packed your bag! Chances are, on your way out the door you’ve also forgotten something that you needed! That was 100% me before I started packing my bags the night before.
We can’t all be blessed with an amazing memory, so if you’re like me (the unblessed-memory kind), start packing your bag the night before. If you wanted to be extra organised, on top of that, you could even make a list for the extra things that you can’t pack the night before (phone, lunch, house keys etc).
By packing a bag the night before, you can be prepared for the next day so you don’t get that horrid, overwhelming feeling or be worrying that you’ve forgotten something.
6. List Goals And Things To Do For The Next Day
I’m all about setting goals. I have long term goals, short term goals and daily goals or so many things in my life!
I find it so satisfying being able to tick off things on my list that I’ve done throughout the day. It’s like a mini pat on the back.
Every night before I go to bed, I find it so beneficial to plan for my day, making at least 3 things to get done for that day. I include small and big goals on the list.
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7. Set An Alarm
I use the ‘sleep’ option on my phones clock app, which helps me to determine what time to go to bed & wake up to ensure that I get enough hours sleep. It doesn’t matter what day of the week it is, I always get up early, so it’s important that I got to bed at a sensible time in order to be able to do so.
I’m a huge advocate for early nights & early mornings. I always feel so good, snuggling into bed between 8:30pm to 10pm to wake up feeling refreshed anywhere between 4am-6:30am.
Recently, I have started getting up super early (closer to 4am) to give me more time to work on my businesses in the mornings. It’s super important for me to get enough sleep or I have to take naps during the day, which sometimes makes me feel muggy and sleepy for the rest of the day.
8. Put Phone On Aeroplane Mode
This is the point in my routine when I say goodnight to my phone. After putting it on aeroplane mode, I put it on charge on the other side of the room.
Aeroplane mode is great for at night because stops notifications & therefore removes distractions & the temptation of picking up my phone and scrolling before bed.
9. Recap The Good Things That Happened That Day
Once in bed without any distractions, I get comfy and I go into a daydream thinking about the things I liked about that day. Like in my morning routine, I purposefully think of at least 3 things that I’m grateful for, but in relation to that day.
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This is important for me because I never like to go to bed with anything but good & happy thoughts.
Finally, I read books on my kindle for about 10 minutes before I start drifting into my unconscious dreams. This is a great downtime step to really become sleepy and calm, ready to dream. I read anything from books on mindfulness, business growth, poetry to fantasy stories. However, I avoid reading anything about politics, news or anything that could be considered more stressful reading.
Alternatively, if you are not much of a reader, I recommend getting the Calm app. It has lots of great, short stories that are recorded and read out in a peaceful way, perfect to help you drift into dreamland. Sometimes, if I’m extra tired and I don’t want to keep my eyes open, I will listen to a story on Calm and I will soon fall asleep.
I hope that you found this blog post useful! If you did, please feel free to share the love on social media and join the Hello Vegan Bee mailing list for updates on other super helpful and informative posts in the future!