Creating balance in my life has always been a bit of a challenge. I can adhere to some things but others, hard as I may try, fall off to the wayside. As unpredictable as my life may be sometimes, I have held to a bit of routine that I know has kept me more on the sane side than not. That is my evening routine. Everyone should have one. It should be an easy enough routine that you can do it anywhere.
I will admit that after having Wyatt, that evening routine took a few hits and was re-built a few times but I tried hard to keep a small amount of time in the evening for myself. This routine included removing contacts, showering, washing my face, putting face creams on, breathing, just standing in my closet thinking about what I am going to wear the next day (when I worked) now, I just stand in the closet trying to remember what I am doing. I also read every night. Sometimes it’s just 5 minutes, but it clears my head for bed. The last thing you should be thinking about when you lay down is things you did or did not do that day. I have also added to my reading time, soft bedtime piano music. It’s very relaxing. Clearing your room of clutter is also important for getting a clear mind before bed. What is on your nightstand? You can put whatever the heck you want, but make sure it is stuff that makes you happy when you look at it before bed. As always, less is more.
Telling you to clear your mind before bed, I realize is like saying find a million dollars under your bed each night. And come to think of it, if we could find a million dollars under our bed each night we would probably sleep way better. But since that is never going to happen for us normal people we must try other tactics. Adding something to your evening routine that will help you clear your mind is necessary. It may not work at first. This is something that takes practice. It takes time to learn to breathe and stop thinking. Yes, I said stop thinking. If you are reading and you realize you have read an entire page and have no idea what you read because you have been thinking about XYZ, you are doing it wrong. Teach yourself to become immersed in something else at night. Allow your mind to be taken away, by a book, by relaxing yoga, by relaxing music. Let me just suggest that whatever music you choose, let it be something without words. You will inevitably be taken in by lyrics and be thinking about that. Sleep is something that I struggle with. It is hard for me to find a balance. Sometimes it takes me hours to calm myself down for sleep, since I do suffer from anxiety like 20% of the rest of the population. That said, what works for me may not work for you. So when you try something make sure you give it a good go- two or three weeks at least- to give your body a chance to get into the routine.
So- first thing on the list to creating balance in your life- carve out some “me” time that helps you relax and get rid of your day before bed. This will help you sleep better which will make you more productive for your next day.