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Bedtime routines aren’t just for children. Sure, having a bedtime routine for your child means they know what to expect each night before going to bed – of course, expectation and reality are two different things. Getting into good habits at night as an adult can actually help you get better sleep while falling asleep faster.
Highly successful people make decisions all day long that keep them successful. This can range from decisions in the board room to decision in the bedroom. No matter how successful someone is, they need sleep just like everyone else. That being said, here are six bedtime routines of highly successful people.
There is some debate as to whether or not you should read anything before going to bed, but for Bill Gates and former President Barack Obama, reading for at least a half hour before bed is an absolute must for their bedtime routines.
“This isn't necessarily reserved just for business reading or inspirational reading,” said Michael Kerr, an international business speaker and author of "You Can't Be Serious! Putting Humor to Work." “Many successful people find value in being browsers of information from a variety of sources, believing it helps fuel greater creativity and passion in their lives."
Easier said than done, right? When your eyes close for the night, the thoughts of things you might have missed during the day at your job can pop up, even if you’re trying really hard not to think about them. It’s tough to add this bedtime routine, but not impossible. Meditation is always an option (it’s a big part of Oprah Winfrey’s bedtime routine), as is just leaving it at all at the office.
Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook COO, leaves work at 5:30 p.m. every day no matter how busy she is and turns off her phone before going to bed. She also only checks her emails twice a day. Even though we all can’t be an executive at a large, global company, we can still follow in the footsteps of Sandberg’s bedtime routine.
Just like Sandberg turns her phone off before bedtime, a major part of anyone’s bedtime routine should be to avoid all electronic devices. Playing on your phone, your tablet, or watching TV, can trick your brain into thinking it’s not time to go to sleep, making it that much harder to fall asleep and harder still to wake up full rested in the mornings.
Arianna Huffington is another person who believes in ditching the devices. She reads only ‘real paper books’ and avoids electronic readers.
It is really easy to get bogged down into a sea of self-doubt, especially when you’re lying in bed trying to fall asleep. What did you do wrong today? Everything, of course! For a successful bedtime routine, stop thinking about things that might have stunk throughout the day and instead think of all of the positive things that happened.
These things don’t have to be momentous. Instead, add up all of the little things that were positive in the day. Benjamin Franklin always asked himself, “What good have I done today? What good shall I do this day?”
Franklin’s second question leads us thinking about all of the good you might be able to do tomorrow. This one-two approach actually puts your mind into a more tranquil mode, making it easier to fall asleep.
Feed off the positives from today and channel that into what positives could be had tomorrow. Keep these thoughts flowing in your mind as part of a healthy bedtime routine.
This isn’t necessarily a “Dear Diary” moment, but it’s something that, on a tangible level, works as part of your bedtime routine. Write down things you accomplished during the day. You can also write down things you’re thankful for and things you hope to accomplish in the days to come.
Writing these things down and seeing them written out can help your brain better process the information and not fixate on it as much.
Regardless of person, having a bedtime routine – and sticking with it – is key to having healthy sleep habits every night. You’ll wake up feeling rested and ready to take on the day. On the flipside, changing up your bedtime routine, going to sleep at different hours and waking up later in the day can wreak havoc on your health over time.
Try out different things each night to see what works best for you – whether it’s yoga or meditation or even just a nice bath. Find that one bedtime routine that works for you and keep it for your best sleep!
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