lasoniabgraves.com
My Nighttime Self-Care Routine - Lasonia B. Graves
Do you have a nighttime self-care routine in place? I bet for a lot of you the answer is NO. For some people, winding down each night can be a challenge. I think it’s safe to say that at the end of the day, we typically fall into bed exhausted and then wake up the next morning with brain fog to start our daily routines all over again. That was the case for me anyway. After suffering many restless nights, I knew that some things in my life had to change. What I realized was that I was trying to tackle too many things in the evenings and oftentimes well into the late-night hours. I would then fall into bed at night exhausted but unable to get a full night’s rest. I decided to take a good hard look at my schedule and afterward, realized I needed to rearrange my priorities, and also make sure that I penciled in some time for me. Adding self-care habits to our nightly routine is one way to improve our health, both mentally and physically. When we take care of ourselves, we have more to give to those we love. I have discovered that by consistently following a nightly routine, my evenings, flow so much smoother. Not only do my evenings flow smoothly, but I fall asleep faster and I am able to rest peacefully. When incorporating a self-care routine you need to decide what type of activities will benefit you the most (such as reading, journaling, doing a brain dump, or spending some quiet time with your significant other). Here is my typical nighttime routine: TRY SOME RELAXING MUSIC As I prepare to wind down each evening, I always start off by playing soft, soothing music. I like to listen to instrumental jazz or nature sounds – particularly the sound of rain. ENJOY A SOOTHING SHOWER OR BATH I love a hot, steamy shower. I light up some scented candles to add a little bit of aromatherapy. The music, candles, and water from the shower combined all help me to relax and allow my cares from the day to fade away. Once or twice a week I set aside time to take a relaxing bath. I add some bath salts, have my music and candles for ambiance, and I will sip a glass of wine and enjoy a good soak. TAKE CARE OF YOUR SKIN After showering, I pamper my skin from head to toe. I make sure that I moisturize all over with either cocoa butter or shea butter. I really love the scent of cocoa butter and it does an excellent job of hydrating my skin. I love using raw cocoa butter from Wild Herb Soap Company. Next, I take care of my face. I apply toner to my face and afterward, I apply my favorite moisturizer or facial oil (I fully cleanse my face prior to getting into the shower). I also apply an undereye cream as needed to help with dark circles under my eyes. I discuss the basics of skincare in-depth in this post. STRETCH YOUR BODY I like to do a few stretching exercises at night to help me sleep better. I have found that stretching helps to loosen me up, and makes me feel more relaxed. According to Inspyiyr.com, nighttime stretching improves your quality of sleep and helps to lower stress levels. SHUT OFF THE ELECTRONICS This one has always been a struggle for me. I tend to want to catch up on social media in the evenings, but I have found that by putting my phone (and computer) away an hour or two before bedtime helps my brain to shut off so that I can prepare for a good night’s rest. PLAN YOUR DAY I like to go over my planner in the evenings so that I have an idea of what all needs to get done the next day. I also take this time to write down anything that’s floating through my head so that I’m not up all night thinking about my to-do list. READ A BOOK Reading is one of my favorite past times. Most nights I sip on a cup of tea and read a few chapters of a good book before I go to sleep. I used to read books that were somewhat stimulating (like a good mystery novel), but I would get so caught up that I would be reading until the wee hours of the morning. Now, I opt for books that are not quite as stimulating and save mystery novels for the weekends. FINAL THOUGHTS As a wife and mom, I know that there can be days when a self-care routine is not feasible. I mean life happens to all of us. Just know that taking care of YOU is an important part of your well-being and enables you to properly care for your family. A nightly routine can help you relax, de-stress and prepare for a good night’s sleep. It has made a world of difference in my life, and I am pretty sure a little nightly self-care will make a world of difference for you as well. How do you wind down each night? I’d love to hear about your nighttime routine in the comments. Related