I don’t know about you, but my sleep schedule over the last month and a half has gone from decent to bad to “sleep where???” This isn’t because I don’t value sleep by the way. I love sleep! BUT sleep doesn’t love me right now and it’s 100% my fault.
With the talk of opening businesses back up comes the talk of employees going back to work. Some of you will be returning to work after working from home. Some of you will be hitting the job market hunting for jobs that are now looking for new hires. Either way we are going to be transitioning from out of the office to back in the office and a good night’s sleep is going to be a requirement.
My current sleep schedule is: In bed by 12:30, scroll social media “trying to fall asleep” until 2:30, try to fall asleep without social media for a half-hour, and actually fall asleep between 3-4:00. It’s trash. I need a total sleep schedule reset if I am going to be moderately useful back at work. With all of the other adjustments that’ll need to be made, I don’t want to be fatigued alongside them. Below I will share 5 steps I’ve already started taking to reset my sleep schedule, and some adjustments I will be making soon to reset my sleep schedule.
How to Reset Your Sleep Schedule in 5 Steps
Develop a Wind-Down Process
My wind-down process begins when I turn off my tv. I’m not a big tv watcher, but I do love to catch up on some shows in the evening. I’ve begun to turn my tv off at around 11:00 to allow my brain to destimulate. While the tv is off I do some light cleaning of my living room and kitchen. This is when I’d wash any leftover dishes, wipe down countertops and disinfect the sink (I really love waking up to a clean house, so this is kinda my thing). Ideally I’d love to begin this process at 10:00, but baby steps.
Get Fresh For Bed
This is when I handle all the hygiene stuff and skincare things for nighttime. I brush my teeth, freshen my hair, and take care of my skin. When my hair is out and natural this is when I’d spritz and add product and begin protective styling it for bed. I sleep better when clean, but I am a morning shower-er so depending on the amount of activity during the day it’s not uncommon for me to pop into the shower quickly before getting into bed.
I cannot just pop into bed and expect to sleep. The way my brain is set up I’ll be staring at my ceiling for hours. Instead I need to quiet my brain and body. I’ve started doing light ab exercises before getting into bed. Not intense enough to increase my heart rate but enough to exhaust my muscles a little bit, which helps me to feel tired. I’ll also stretch on the floor in my room while playing soft music. This gives me time to sit and pay attention to how my body is feeling. It also helps my body to feel physically relaxed as stretching releases tension.
At this point I get into my bed and do a devotional and journal a little bit. Nothing too intense but just to allow myself to reset my mind and get some things off of my chest before sleeping on them. Once things are on paper, I no longer feel burdened by them and they’re less likely to disrupt my sleep.
My phone keeps me up. Even if I’m not using it, just seeing it triggers my brain to think about all the reasons I should be. So, I put it away. I definitely don’t put it far enough away, but again…baby steps. Once my phone is out of sight, my lights off and my body relaxed, sleep comes easy.
Currently, this routine (give or take natural hair) gets me to sleep by 12:30. Although that is still far off from my ideal, it’s working for now. I’d love to get to seep by 11:00 and it’ll happen as I continue to make small adjustments. I’ve just started using a sleep app called Pillow. It works in conjunction with my Apple watch and I’ve loved looking at how it breaks down my sleep and shows me how I slept. For a bonus try tracking your sleep with an app. I used Sleep Cycle previously as well and also loved it.
I hope you found this helpful! Wishing you good luck and safety in these next few weeks! Happy sleeping!
xx Nicole Eva