I love the changing of the seasons, and the transition of summer into autumn may just be my favorite time of year, except for one thing: those ever-later sunrises and earlier sunsets. As the daylight hours begin to shrink, I miss waking up to the sunrise and start relying more than ever on a healthy sleep routine to keep me feeling energetic and rested. With fall officially here, now is a great time to dial in those sleep routines to set ourselves up for sound sleep and energized days.
Here are the three factors that make the most impact in my sleep:
Stick to a consistent bedtime and wake time.
I know it’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking I can trick my body into burning the midnight oil or staying up super late with no consequences, but that’s not how the body’s internal clock works. A consistent sleep and wake time has been the number-one factor in my ability to fall asleep quickly and deeply when I lay down in bed, and wake easily when my alarm goes off. If I stray from my usual routine by more than about 30 minutes (especially in the morning!) I can definitely feel how much I struggle when I try to get back on track.
And, speaking of bedtimes, wake times, and alarms….I’m a huge fan of the Restore 2 clock from Hatch! It’s a sunrise alarm clock that mimics the natural rising of the sun for a gentle wake-up instead of a jarring beep in the pitch-dark of predawn, with customizable sounds and lightscapes. Use my link to get $20 off + Free Shipping on the Restore 2.
Support your sleep (naturally) from the inside-out.
In addition to avoiding alcohol too close to bed, consider supplementing with Vitamin D and magnesium (midlife women are very likely to be deficient in both of this nutrients, and low levels can create problems falling – or staying – asleep.) And before you reach for potentially habit-forming sleep aids, consider a gentler option, like a tea blend containing calming herbs like lavender, chamomile and tulsi, some of my favorites for encouraging my body and mind to wind down before bed.
Establish calming routines.
A special beverage, a warm bath, going through a soothing skincare routine, or listening to a meditation while you partake in some restorative yoga postures can all act as an anchor to a soothing, restful pre-bedtime routine, and these activities have the highest rest-inducing impact when they’re repeated over and over. Think of the bath, PJs, book routine you implemented when your kids were babies: there’s nothing magical about putting on a pair of pajamas or reading a book, except that when you do it every night at the same time, your body and brain start to get the message that the bedtime routine means sleep is coming soon. We aren’t so different from babies, after all.
I use my Hatch Restore 2 every night before bed – it features a completely customizable bedtime routine featuring that I love for helping set the mood before bedtime. As the light next to my bed slowly dims and I listen to peaceful forest sounds, I find my body and mind getting more and more ready for sleep. Use my link to get $20 off the Restore 2 + Free Shipping from Hatch!
What are essential parts of your bedtime routine? Join us in the Reinvent community, and let’s talk about it.
*Product links are affiliate partners. If you click and make a purchase, I’ll earn a commission. Rest assured that I am very particular about the products I mention – unless otherwise stated, they’re always things I generally use, love, and think you will find useful.