4 Tips for a Better Bedtime Routine

4 Tips for a Better Bedtime Routine

These 4 ideas help prepare you for the day ahead — and get the sleep you need.

By: Andrea Updyke

Just spending a few minutes each night on a new bedtime routine can lead to better sleep — and more of it.

Many parents know bedtime routines help children mentally prepare for sleep. It’s no different for adults. No matter what their age, people need time to switch gears and prepare for sleep.

With these four easy steps — which take about 20 minutes — you can set the stage for a great night of sleep and make your mornings a little bit brighter.

1. Check the Calendar
In the evening, check the schedule for the next day and start to mentally plan ahead.

Will you need to get up early or make any stops on the way to work? Will you need a jacket or gym clothes? If you can, gather any extra items you need to bring with you and place them near the door so you aren’t scrambling to find them before you head out the door.

Don’t forget to check your kids’ calendars to see if they have extra activities. You can also include this step as part of their own bedtime routine so they can get organized.

2. Take Care of Yourself
It’s just as important to take care of yourself as it is taking care of anyone else in the house. Create a simple routine that gives you the chance to wipe away the stress of the day.


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Even if it’s simply taking a few minutes to wash your face, you will feel fresh and ready to enjoy your sleep. Finish by slathering on some lavender lotion right before bed to clear your mind and relax your senses.

3. Get Comfortable
Even something as small as an earring or a bracelet can cause enough discomfort to wake you up. If there are any steps you can take to avoid being woken up in the middle of the night, take them! Nothing is worse than being woken up (and not being able to get back to sleep) due to something you could have avoided.

4. Save Thoughts for Tomorrow
Important thoughts always seem to come at the worst time — like in the shower or in bed. Keep a pen and pad of paper on your nightstand to jot down thoughts or ideas and get them out of your brain.

As you review your calendar, make sure you write down anything relevant that pops into your mind. Getting it down on paper takes the pressure off your brain to recall it later. Think of it as a filing system for your thoughts.

Then, take a few minutes to clear your mind and focus on sleep. Stretch, take a few deep breaths and relax your muscles so you can enjoy your rest.

Once you have your routine in place, these steps shouldn’t take more than 20 minutes each night — and those are 20 minutes well spent when you consider how much deeper you’ll be sleeping.

Do you have an effective bedtime routine? Log in or register for P&G everyday today and let us know your tips in the comments section below!

Andrea is the founder of Lil Kid Things and also writes for the Babycenter Blog. She lives in Raleigh, N.C., where she spends her days caring for her two sons, Oscar and Calvin, and learning how to balance work, kids and marriage.

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