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Build an Adult Bedtime Routine in 7 Steps

by Olly Mason

For many, sleep time is the best part of the day, but for approximately 60 million Americans who suffer from insomnia every year, falling to sleep can be a nightmare. What’s more, the less sleep we get, the bigger the chance of putting ourselves at risk, whether it’s operating vehicles or losing the ability to focus or underlining health issues, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease.

We can’t claim to be Mr. Sandman, but with these seven bedtime tips for adults, building a routine for better dreams may be a lot easier than you think. See how below!


1.  Put Your Electronics to Snooze, Too

We’re starting with perhaps the biggest offender of sleep — smart devices and electronics. By day, these gadgets come in handy for managing tasks and entertainment, but by night, the blue light these devices emit cause the brain to believe it’s still daytime. As a result, your body wakes up, and the longer you expose yourself to the effect, the more awake you feel.

Break the chain by setting an alarm on your smart device anywhere between one to two hours before bedtime; this will your cue to finish up using your device, put it away, and start getting ready for bed.

young woman using smart device in dark

2.  Establish a Consistent Time to Unwind

Researchers often proclaim it takes 21 days to form a new habit. That means, in as little as three weeks, you can improve your lifestyle by creating a consistent sleep time. After you’ve set an alarm on your phone (suggested in tip one), make it a habit to complete all tasks within that hour or two, with 20 minutes at the end to ease into sleep. During those couple of hours, we recommend doing the following tips on this list.

3.  Sweet Dreams Happen Before Sleep

Now that the day is behind you, treat yourself to a light snack before bed. While a heavy meal could cause you to have trouble sleeping, going to bed hungry could cause you to have lingering feelings of lethargy the next day; however, with a light and healthy snack, you can end your day on a sweet note that hits just the spot. From tryptophan, to serotonin and melatonin, the following bedtime snacks are rich in compounds that help you fall to sleep.

  • Kiwis: contain serotonin
  • Tart cherries: contain melatonin
  • Pistachios: contain melatonin
  • Warm milk: contains tryptophan
  • Goji berries: contain melatonin

woman in blue shirt with handful of kiwis

4.  Take a Moment to Reflect

Those moments before falling asleep can be some of the most peaceful, making them an opportune time to decompress. Make it a habit of keeping a journal handy (avoid jotting ideas down on your phone!) to organize your thoughts.

What you choose to include is up to you — whether it’s poetry, songs, or even a doodle — though, we recommend hitting these four points: general ideas, projected plans, personal goals, and wins. Practicing this before bed will help condition your mind to stay focused and prepared from the moment you wake up to the moment you go to sleep.

young girl writes in journal on bed

5.  Remember Ambience

A dark room is a happy place for sleepers. By simply dimming lights or even lighting a candle, you can influence your brain into feeling sleepy. Draw the shades, close your bedroom door, and keep electronics off.

For phase two, get your bedroom chilly. Doing this will bring your body temperature down, which activates melatonin in the body. Plus, is there a better feeling than a surge of warmth lulling you to sleep under the comforter?

6.  See No Insomnia, Hear No Insomnia

Even during sleep, our bodies are relatively conscious of our surroundings, for better or for worse.

Sleep masks are making a huge comeback, and that’s because new designs help block out more light that can disrupt sleep. Slip one on and you’re instantly transported to a void of relaxing darkness.

When used with proper hygiene, earplugs can be an affordable way to dramatically reduce noise from your surroundings. If your bedroom faces a busy street or you, are unfortunate enough to have a noisy neighbor, or your partner is a snorer, using earplugs can reduce 15 to 33 decibels of environmental noise. That’s enough to take a normal conversation of 60 decibels down to 30 decibels, the equivalent to a whisper.

African American man in t shirt and sleep mask sleeping in bed

7.  Invest in a Quality Mattress

Our last tip is the easiest adult bedtime routine on the list: Sleep on a mattress you enjoy! While a bedtime routine alone is healthy, pairing it with a comfortable mattress is the best way to get the restorative sleep you deserve. If your current mattress is to blame for nights of tossing and turning, then it might be time to include “invest in a mattress you’ll love” into your bedtime journal.

You’ve done your job, now it’s time for us to do ours! From the ideal mattress comfort, to the mattress type that feels just right, we’re dedicated to finding you a mattress that will get you excited about sleep once again. Discover a new place to dream online or in-store today!