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The Best Night Routine For A Productive Day | Pick The Brian

Relax with a Book

Get in some light reading before bedtime.

Good old-fashioned print is preferable to an iPad or Kindle. The light from the screen of your tablet or phone is blue-spectrum light … it tells the brain to stop secreting melatonin [a natural sleep-inducing biochemical].

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IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

The Best Night Routine For A Productive Day | Pick The Brian

The Best Night Routine For A Productive Day | Pick The Brian

https://www.pickthebrain.com/blog/best-night-routine-productive-day/

pickthebrain.com

7

Key Ideas

Step Away from the Spreadsheet

Shut off your brain and stop working. The tasks will still be there tomorrow—plus some more, because work can, and should, wait.

Look Back, Look Ahead

Review what you accomplished today, then make a to-do list for tomorrow. 

Don’t make these lists too close to bedtime.

Cool It

According to the National Sleep Foundation, the ideal temperature for shut-eye is around 65 degrees. 

The cooler you are, the sleepier you become, so turn down the thermostat.

Cut Off the Alcohol (and Snacks)

At least two hours before bedtime, cut off the booze, food, and stimulants (not just coffee and soda, but also sugary desserts and even fruits). 

Digestion and sleep don’t mix well.

Clean It Up

Waking up to a messy household isn’t the way to start the day. 

Tidy up the kitchen, your bedroom, your workspace, and everything else within eyesight before you hit the sack for a clearer path in the morning.

Relax with a Book

Get in some light reading before bedtime.

Good old-fashioned print is preferable to an iPad or Kindle. The light from the screen of your tablet or phone is blue-spectrum light … it tells the brain to stop secreting melatonin [a natural sleep-inducing biochemical].

Dress for No Stress

Plan and lay out tomorrow’s clothing ensemble tonight, and you’ll have one less thing to worry about.

If your first outfit of the day is gym clothes for a morning workout, even better.

SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Why a Night Routine Matters

A night routine is the things you do immediately prior to going to bed.

Three benefits of having a decent night routine:

  • You’ll have a more restful and higher-quality sleep....
Before You Head Home…
  • Get rid of caffeine after 4:00 pm. Caffeine stays in your system for up to six hours.
  • Stay hydrated. Dehydration can make you feel sluggish and tired when you want to be awake.

  • Decide when the workday ends. Establish a cut off time for work-related emails and phone calls as well.

Immediately After Work…
  • Avoid alcohol. Alcohol may make you drowsy, but the sleep you get won’t be restful. Stop consuming it at least two hours before bed.
  • Have a healthy dinner. 

    When you need a snack closer to bedtime, reach for something light and healthy.

  • Take time to tidy. Waking up in an orderly space will work wonders for your mood.

  • Prepare for tomorrow. 

    When you don’t have a million things to do upon waking, it’s easier to fall asleep.
  • Take time for yourself. Perhaps you watch an episode of your favorite show or play video games.

5 more ideas

Benefits of an evening routine

Haphazard evening routines can have serious effects on our sleep. 

The right evening routine helps us wind down, relax, and get into a deep, restorative sleep—making us refreshed and ...

The science of sleep

When we close our eyes for the night, our mind cycles through different stages of sleep:

  • Light sleep: Which is most similar to being awake
  • REM (or Rapid-Eye-Movement): Where our minds are asleep but active and where dreams are most likely to happen
  • Deep sleep: Where our mind is in “regeneration” mode

So many things can get in the way of us reaching deep sleep, from stress and burnout to late-night screen usage, eating late, and physical issues. To make sure we reach our deep, restorative sleep, we need a proper evening routine.

Create a “closing ritual”

For most of us it is the mind, rather than the body, that disrupts restorative sleep.

To cleanse our mind of the leftover responsibilities of the day, we need to bring a mental wind down into our evening routine.

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The Brain as a Snowy Hill

The snowy hill represents the brain, the people sledding are like the memories, and the trails left behind are the synapses in the brain.

Think of the brain as a hill covered in snow, ...

Memory Palace/The Method of Loci
A method to enhance memory using visualizations with the use of spatial memory.
  1. Choose a place that you know really well.
  2. Plan the route and pick specific locations in your route.
  3. Decide what you want to memorize
  4. Place an object or two, with a mental image, and place them in your memory palace. Exaggerate your images. For example, use nudity or crazy images forcing it to stick in your mind.
  5. Make the image into a mnemonic
Mnemonics

memory device that helps you retain and retrieve information simply with the use of retrieval cues to encode information in the brain.

  1. List the words you want to remember.
  2. Write the initials of each word vertically.
  3. Create a sentence/phrase using the initials.

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Family, Reflection and Email

Balancing work obligations with meaningful family time is an important part of building a successful evening routine.

An evening routine starts with family time. Tackle some to-do’s la...

Practice Good Sleep Hygiene

Take steps to make it easier to sleep well.

  • Avoid caffeine, alcohol, or other drugs for several hours before bed
  • Set a regular bedtime
  • Drink some warm milk or herbal tea, or have a light snack
  • Try a screen-free activity like meditation or reading
  • Eliminate as much noise from your bedroom as possible
  • Keep your bedroom dark
  • Don’t linger too long in bed. It’s better to do your lounging on the couch and head for bed only when it’s time to sleep.
To Sleep Or Not To Sleep
Surviving on a glorified power nap has more to do with genes than motivation. An estimated 5% of the population only needs a few hours to feel refreshed thanks to a rare genetic mutation. Most people need seven to nine hours a night.

one more idea

Avoid Randomness

... when you are ready to wind down your day. This includes not getting stuck in front of screens, social media or even doing a marathon of our favorite show.

The brain is firing up dopam...

Eliminate Negativity

Negative emotions can lower your immunity. They affect every part of your body. Carrying them up to sleep will affect your health causing you to lack the necessary rest your body needs.

Doing something that lights you up can help shift the mood. Force your mind to think of good thoughts. 

Do One Thing You Love

Your brain relaxes when you do something that is delightful. It puts you in a safe zone where you can enjoy yourself for the time being.

Doing it just before going to bed is the best time because it helps to seal the positive energy that will condition your mind the next day.

7 more ideas

Eat Meals Earlier 

Don't eat any heavy foods within two hours of bed time. 

If you get too hungry as bedtime creeps around, there are a few foods that are okay to eat before bed, and can even h...

Do Something After You Eat

After you eat, get up and do something a bit more active—even if it's just washing dishes or taking out the trash. It'll avoid that post-meal drowsiness, and it's a great time to have a 10-minute cleaning burst to keep your house looking nice.

Avoid Napping

Napping can make it more difficult to fall asleep at night:

If, after you've thoroughly tested your evening routine and gotten better sleep, you still feel drowsy, you can try adding a power nap to your day, preferably during the early afternoon. 

7 more ideas

Plan Out Your Morning

Take a few minutes to pick out an outfit, decide what you’re going to eat for breakfast, prepare your work bag, or even write a short to-do list of the things you need to accomplish before...

Get Your Bed Ready

Are your pillows as fluffed as they could be? Is your comforter evenly laid out? Does your bed look appealing to get into?

Research shows that things like fresh sheets can easily make your slumbering experience better, and 71% of people surveyed said they sleep better when their sheets are clean.

Journaling for 5 minutes

Take five minutes to consider how your day went. Journaling reduces stress and helps boost your EQ.

Instead of going the “dear diary” route, write two bullet points for each of the following questions:

  • What are the two things you did well today?
  • What are the two things you can improve upon tomorrow?

one more idea

A bedtime routine will help you sleep
  • It can calm an overactive mind.
  • You can think, plan and prepare for tomorrow, so you don’t lie awake worrying about details when you go to bed.
  • By repeating a regular pattern, ...
Duration of your routine

It’s up to you to decide how long your routine will be, based on the amount of time you feel it takes you to relax.

It may be, for example, that by the time you’ve put the kids to bed and tidied up, 15 minutes is enough time. If you do have more free time and suffer from regular sleep problems, maybe 30 to 60 minutes would be better.

Switch off the electronic devices
  • They stimulate your brain.
  • The light that some devices emit might affect your internal body clock. If you can’t separate yourself from your phone, at least put the blue light filter on and dim the screen brightness.
  • They can be addictive, eating into even more sleep time.
  • Checking emails, the news and even social media at night can create worry and stress.

9 more ideas

The Science of Sleep

The average adult spends 36 % (or about one-third) of his or her life asleep.

Purpose of Sleep:

  • Restoration
  • Memory Consolidation
  • Metabolic Health
Restoration

The first purpose of sleep is restoration.

Every day, your brain accumulates metabolic waste as it goes about its normal neural activities. Sleeping restores the brains healthy condition by removing these waste products. Accumulation of these waste products has been linked to many brain-related disorders.

Memory Consolidation

The second purpose of sleep is memory consolidation.

Sleep is crucial for memory consolidation, which is responsible for your long term memories. Insufficient or fragmented sleep can hamper your ability to remember facts and feelings/emotions.

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Decompress from your day

The brain is preparing for sleep about two hours before our actual bedtime. That waking system has to slowly come down to allow the sleep system to take over.

S...

Don’t wind down with your gadgets
If you do decide to catch up on your favorite show, don’t do it on your computer or tablet. 

Even just a few seconds of exposure from a blue light-emitting device an hour before bed can disrupt the melatonin rhythm, a rhythm that is so critical to helping us fall asleep, stay asleep and wake up feeling refreshed.

Eat a light, pre-bedtime snack

In our perpetually dieting world, it’s not uncommon to lie in bed hungry, but not wanting to eat in an effort to save calories. However, hunger is stimulating and fragments sleep.

Eating a light carbohydrate or protein snack prior to bedtime will stave off hunger without causing you to crash and awaken later in the night. 

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