How To Improve Your Night Routine This Semester

We finally made it through an endless fall semester and now we get to start fresh in the spring! It’s a brand new year and a new chance to make our crazy and hectic lives a little bit less stressful. Improving your night routine is one of the easiest and most effective changes you can make for this new semester.

Here are some of the best ways to tweak and revamp your nighttime routine:

1. Don’t use your phone or laptop before bed.

This is one of the more important tips on this list because let’s face it, we all mindlessly scroll through Instagram before bed every night. Not only is this a waste of valuable sleep time, but it can actually be bad for our health. Our electronic devices emit a blue light that tricks our body into thinking it is daytime, stopping it from producing melatonin. This means it takes us even longer to fall asleep after we finally shut the phone off, and over time this loss of sleep really adds up.

2. Have a skincare and oral hygiene routine.

Your skincare routine can be as simple as washing your face and moisturizing, but having a set routine will tell your brain it’s time for bed and help you wind down for the night. As for brushing your teeth, doing this at least an hour before bed is helpful because it keeps you from snacking before bed. It’s best to stop eating a few hours before you go to bed to ensure a good night’s sleep, so brushing your teeth when you do your skincare is a great tip.

3. Always change into pajamas.

A lot of people do this one already, but there are those of us who sometimes get lazy and like to sleep in our clothes or just change into a T-shirt. Changing fully before bed into clothes that you only wear to sleep can again, tell your brain that it’s time to wind down and go to sleep. Making this part of your routine every day will help your body stick to your chosen bedtime. Plus, what feels better than throwing on some fresh comfy sweats or a cute pajama set?

4. Put your phone on the other side of your room when you sleep.

This tip is so easy to do and yet not many of us listen when people tell us to do it. Putting your phone away from your bed when you sleep prevents you from wasting that hour on your phone, mindlessly scrolling when you should be sleeping. Plus, when your alarm goes off in the morning it forces you to get out of bed to shut it off, which is always the hardest part of waking up. Leaving your electronic devices behind when you get into bed will let your brain switch off from the day and finally disconnect, making your sleep so much better.

5. Read before bed.

I can’t stress how helpful reading before bed actually is, yet most of us find it really hard to sit down and pick up a book every night. However, reading for even fifteen minutes or half an hour before bed in nice dim lighting will calm you down and prepare you to fall asleep quickly. Your mind will get to relax and enjoy your book, allowing you to turn off the craziness from your day. If this seems daunting to you, try listening to an audiobook, podcast, or guided meditation before bed. Even some calm music can help you fall asleep!

6. Drink water.

We lose a lot of moisture when we sleep, especially if we’re overheating under all of our blankets. Drinking cold water before bed has been shown to help people fall asleep faster and quicker. However, make sure you leave enough time between hydrating and getting into bed so you don’t have to get up again and run to the bathroom!

7. Go to sleep earlier!

This is by far the most important lesson on this list. We all know we should be getting eight hours of sleep and how hard that can be in college but, even if you need to cut that eight hours back one night, you should still be going to bed early pretty consistently. Worried about your work? Try getting to sleep earlier and then doing your work in the morning. Sleeping from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. may be the same amount of hours as 2 a.m. to 10 a.m., but your quality of sleep when you go to bed that late is so much worse and you undoubtedly will be tired all day. Try going to bed half an hour earlier each week until you get to a reasonable bedtime and your body will thank you.

Every new semester is a new opportunity to improve your well being and productivity, so having a good sleep routine and schedule can really help your overall mood and health. Try out some of these tips for a few days and you will be sure to notice a difference!

Want to keep up with HCBU? Make sure to like us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram, check out our Pinterest board, and read our latest Tweets!