Morning routines are a must for anyone trying to optimize his or her life. Rising early to meditate, exercise or goal-set are common rituals that often lead to very productive and high-powered days.  Yet, while we recognize the importance of beginning the day on a positive note, we tend to underestimate the value of a healthy pre-sleep routine.  (And after a long day, the last thing most of us want to think about is how to effectively shut down our bodies and minds.) Improve the quality of your sleep while refreshing and empowering your mind with these useful tips.

3 Ways To Improve Your 3 Pre-Sleep Technique:

journal1/ Note Your 3 Wins.  Before sleep each night, reflect on your day and acknowledge three things you did well. Often times, we are our harshest critics and don’t notice our small victories; we focus on what isn’t going well without noticing what is.  And this shifts our mindset and heartset in a significant way – more than we realize.  It’s important to take note of the positives (no matter how small they may seem at times) in order to connect deeply with your potential as well as with gratitude.  So, take a moment and consider 3 things you did well (this is even more important to do when you feel discouraged after a challenging day!).  Recognizing your 3 wins will turn up your self-confidence and your gratitude; both are key elements to happiness and success in life.  

Taking this a step further, find a spare notebook or journal and set it on your nightstand for jotting down your 3 daily wins each evening.  Writing things down is a very powerful way to internalize and empower our thoughts and ideas. This notebook can also serve as a gratitude journal, which can be extremely healing to your health and happiness.

phone2/ Turn Off Technology. (Many of us know this one but don’t take it too seriously.)  Hopefully, you don’t fall asleep in front of a television or computer regularly; if you do, it’s worth reconsidering this habit, as research shows this to be detrimental to our health (check this out). It’s more likely you sleep with your smartphone within arm’s reach, a habit many claim feels impossible to break (check out this funny video).  But it’s worth kicking the habit.  As author of The Sleep Revolution and co-founder of Huffington Post Arianna Huffington points out, “we need to create a ritual for ourselves. Even if it’s five minutes before you turn off the lights, turn off your devices and charge them outside the bedroom.” For more information, check out this podcast about sleep and technology.

3/ Picture Your Best Tomorrow.  Take a moment to consider your upcoming day. What does it feel like, what’s on your agenda? With a clear and stress-free attitude, close your eyes and envision how you would like the following day to go. Don’t allow your vision to be clouded with doubt or negative thoughts (and they arise, just acknowledge the thoughts and let them flow past you.)  For instance, if you have a deadline at work the following day, picture things going successfully; if you’re a stay-at-home parent, imagine how you would like the upcoming day to flow.  Allow yourself to truly connect with your vision: notice what it feels like and breathe in the tomorrow you would like to have.  Our minds have a tremendous influence on our future experiences and success.  This nightly practice takes only takes a few moments and will prepare you for a beautiful and successful new day (no matter what).

* Song For This Moment: “Sleep To Dream” (classic Fiona Apple).

Sources & Related Articles:

“Why We Need to Disconnect From Technology”, by Arianna Huffington.