Ok, so you’ve heard me chatter on about Morning Rituals. Well, guess what. We have ourselves a real what came first, the chicken or the egg situation. Seriously, which comes first and which is more important? Certainly, we are all different, so maybe only you can answer that for yourself. However, you have to design your Bedtime Ritual and give it a fair shake before deciding. Deal?
Also, there has to be a reason why when you have a little one the doctor always asks about the bedtime routine you have for the nugget. Why don’t they ask about our Bedtime Ritual? Don’t you also deserve a routine that provides predictability and a good night’s snoozefest?!?
What time can I commit to stop eating?
Some of you may find this to be an odd question. However, studies show that the more time your body has to digest before going to bed, the better. Did you know that your digestion takes blood away from other areas of your body for 3-4 hours after you eat?! So, it’s pretty important to give your body plenty of time to digest before bed. Remember, sleep is your brain’s time to clean itself and reset. This is vital!
What time do my kiddos disappear…. finally?
Please tell me I’m not the only one here. Please, please, please. My 4.5 year old currently can take anywhere from 30mins on a great night to 1 hour and 30mins on a not so great night to get to bed. Sigh. There are nights he pops into our room again at 9 or 9:15pm! As Jennifer Garner says, “Go the beep to sleep!” This is why we have purple bedtime vitamins at our house (melatonin). 🙂
All that being said, your time of ultimate freedom matters. Since mine is inconsistent, I have to plan accordingly. I’m going to set my average freedom scale to 8:40pm.
What is my goal for this time of night?
I am fairly certain I hear some of you saying, “What isn’t my goal?” I know, there is so much to do constantly and really all you want to do is pull up some Netflix and chillax (with or without wine in hand). No one is judging you! That being said, what is your top priority or priorities?
- cleaning the kitchen?
- starting laundry?
- packing lunches or meal prep?
- prep work for the next day in general? (coffee, waters, school and work bags, etc)
- 100% self-care?
My goals vary a little bit from night to night, but for me cleaning the kitchen is my most consistent goal. That doesn’t mean it always gets done, but starting the day with the dishes done and counters clean does bring me great peace.
How much time can I afford to give?
The amount of time you have in your evening will certainly impact the tasks you can take on. My calculation for this is mostly driven by when my kiddos are in bed and when I want/need to be in bed.
Sleep is a priority for me, so I am lights out no later than 10pm during the week (and some weekends too). If my oldest is finally done popping out of his room at 8:30, that gives my 1.5 hours to tackle whatever is on by bedtime routine list. Truthfully though, knowing I need a good 30 minutes to wind down, I set my end time for any type of chores as 9:30pm. On a good night, I get an hour, but often it’s more like 30-45mins. That’s not a ton of time to complete too many tasks.
Calculate your available time for whatever bedtime routine you enjoy and hope for.
What rules do I have for the bedroom?
You take this any way you want to, but what I mean by this is:
- TV or no TV?
- phone away at a certain time?
- what is your latest lights out time?
These bedroom rules could really impact the success of your ritual. I encourage you to take a look at these rules and see where there may be room for improvement so you can get the best sleep around.
How can I readjust when the plan is thrown off?
Some nights it feels more important to watch an episode of Dateline than to follow the bedtime routine. Maybe your vice doesn’t include murder mysteries, but I bet there are days you aren’t in bed ‘on time’. It is possible you’ve decided to go on a date night and enjoy adult conversation (and maybe even adult beverages). I applaud you. Rules/routines are meant to be broken. It’s going to happen, so try to plan for it. What part of your bedtime routine is most crucial for you? My husband thinks it’s bizarre, but no matter how tired I am, I have to have a few minutes to read in bed.
What is your bedtime ritual like? How do you feel when you stick with it?