Following a ‘grown-up’ bedtime routine is beneficial for your mind and body. I am sharing my 6 steps to a good night’s sleep.
Happy New Year 2015!
I hope this is our -yours and mine- best year yet! I have so many projects under my sleeve and I can’t wait to share them with all of you. So, stick around and sign up so you can be up-to-date with all the projects I have lined up for you.
Our last night of 2014 was very laid back. We went out to dinner to our favorite restaurant, came back home and watched Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rocking Eve. After all the hustle and bustle of Thanksgiving and Christmas, I could not have asked for a better way to end the year.
And speaking of ending the day in a laid-back way, I thought it would be great to share with you the bedtime routine I follow at the end of each day.
To start, I must confess: as an adult, I didn’t have a consistent bedtime routine until a few months ago. In my defense, each night brings a new surprise. It’s either late soccer practice with my son, or I simply stay up late browsing the web reading way too many DIY, recipes and craft blogs! What can I say? I am addicted to Pinterest and the blogosphere in general. Whatever it is, it throws my schedule off.
I have been working a lot and dedicating so much of my time to serve and help others and I have neglected myself. Don’t get me wrong, I love helping others, I love my job, I especially love spending time with my family but it was time to slow down and develop a routine to take care of myself, no matter at what time, no matter how tired I am.
Well, it’s been three months and below are 6 things I do before I go to bed, and how they are making a whole world of difference in my days and in my night’s sleep.
1. No More Sweets Before Bedtime
I am not going to lie: this is a hard one, and I confess: I cheated all month. But who can resist those buttery snowflake shaped holiday cookies? Not me.
Sugar = Calories. It is well-known that our metabolism slows down at night, which translates into slow calorie burning. Since we are more active during the day, I am trying to keep breakfast and lunch my bigger meals and skip high-calorie content meals at night. I am trying. I realized that I have a better night’s sleep when my last meal is at least 2 hours before going to bed.
2. Remove Makeup
I can hear you saying: ‘ Duh! ‘. Well, I have been terrible at keeping up with that. I did use makeup remover wipes for a while but ever since my son was born, I turned all my attention to him and his nighttime routine and neglected mine.
But, one night I looked in the mirror and I saw a couple of expression lines around my eyes. No way. This is not happening. Most of the nights I try to jump in the shower to feel clean and relaxed before bed. But, even after a shower, my face needs deep cleansing to remove dirt and makeup. I went back to my routine and started using again facial cleaning wipes.
3. Apply Eye Cream.
Expression lines do not disappear just by removing makeup. So I added to my face cleansing routine one more step.
I apply age defying cream around my eyes and I can truly feel and see the difference. My eyes contour feels softer and the skin around them looks brighter.
4. Moisturize Hands
Making crafts is taking a toll on my hand’s skin, and I do not have a.single.moment. during the day to moisturize them. I always have my ‘hands full’ – no pun intended. The truth is, I am either working on my orders, typing on the computer, running errands or in the kitchen. Not to mention that I probably wash my hands several times throughout the day.
If this is your case too, the best thing you can do is to place your hand lotion by your bedside. I do not forget anymore to apply lotion, and the difference in my hands, arms and elbows skin’s texture is night and day!.
I use and recommend St. Ives Skin Renewing Collagen Elastin Body.
5. Apply Essential Oils
I discovered the magic of this essential oil three years ago when I started going to Pyure Aveda hair salon. I always look forward to the time when they rinse my hair. The washroom is a separate room, all zen-like: lights are dimmed with relaxing spa music playing in the background. Nobody talks. If you need to say something, you whisper.
Besides the normal wash and rinse, you receive a full head and neck massage, a warm moist towel is placed on your neck and a fresh dry dark towel scented with this essential oil is placed over your eyes. At checkout I asked about it, I purchased it, and since then, I am hooked.
It is called Blue Oil Balancing Concentrate by Aveda. Some might find it pricey but this little rollerball bottle could last me up to 6 months. A little bit goes a long way with essential oils. I could not describe it better than Aveda themselves so I will quote them:
Our stress-relieving blue oil helps dissolve tension and raise energy levels with the balancing aromas of refreshing peppermint and soothing blue camomile. When gently touched to skin, its special rollerball applicator releases the perfect amount of concentrate for on-the-spot, cooling acupressure therapy.
I apply it on my temples, forehead, behind my earlobes and in the back of my wrists. I plug-in my iPhone and move onto to my very last bedtime practice.
6. Play 30 minutes of Spa Music on Pandora Radio
Relaxation with essential oils is not complete without some relaxing spa music in the background. I try to recreate a spa environment at home by playing my spa radio station on Pandora. I set the timer on the app for 30 minutes and I drift away into the best night’s sleep.
I play this station 90% of my time. It’s great for working too. Classical and instrumental music is perfect for me since I can not listen to lyrics and sing along while I am trying to write a new article or blog post. It helps me concentrate during photo shoots, too.
And that’s it for my bedtime routine! I am very glad I adopted this routine a few months ago. I feel like I am a little ahead of the game with my new year’s resolutions.