The quest for my perfect evening routine continues. I’ve written about this before and I am making some progress. Let’s talk about the process of developing an evening routine, its various components and take a peek at my current routine.
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A Productive Day Begins at Night!
We all hope our days will be be at least moderately productive and that we’ll have the energy needed to handle necessary tasks. One of the best ways to create a productive day is to begin the night before with an evening routine. A good evening routine can set you up for the next day and ensure you don’t begin the day already feeling behind.
What should we consider including in our evening routine? It’s highly individual. For instance, some might want to watch a favorite TV program each night. I can’t imagine not having my evening cup of tea. You might want to have a long bubble bath.
The individual parts of the routine will vary from person to person but there are some basics to include in one fashion or another.
Components of an evening routine…
Tidy up – It’s discouraging to start your day with a mess staring you in the face. Give yourself the gift of waking up to an orderly home. A quick 10 minute tidy-up can make a huge difference. Try to get the whole family on board with this.
Plan the next day – Take a look at your calendar and make a list of your tasks for the next day. Depending on your situation this could be anything from a list of 2 or 3 things you need to do jotted on a sticky note to a fully time-blocked calendar. The main idea is to get things out of your head and onto paper (or a digital device).
Prepare for the morning – Lay out clothes, pack lunches, set the table for breakfast…whatever you can do to make the morning run more smoothly. If you have children that need to leave the house in the morning, the best tip I can offer is to make sure shoes, coats and gloves are all accounted for and ready to go. Nothing can ruin a morning quite like a frantic search for a missing shoe or mitten.
Self care – Make time for your own self care. That might mean a bubble bath or just a quick shower. Take time for skin care and whatever else you need to do at night to feel relaxed and cared for.
Wind down – Allow time to relax and wind down before bed. You can read, watch television (maybe avoid anything terribly exciting or scary just before bed), work on a puzzle or a quiet hobby. There is evidence that avoiding blue light from computer, TV or phone screens 2-3 hours before bedtime is wise.
My ideal evening routine…
This is what my ideal evening routine would look like. Do I actually do all of this? Sometimes. Not often enough, if I’m being honest. But I’m working toward it!
1. Clean the kitchen right after dinner. Tidy up. Fold and put away any laundry that hasn’t already been done.
2. Finish up any work-related tasks.
3. Make to-do list for tomorrow in my bullet journal.
4. Shower, skin care, turn down bed and spray with lavender linen spray. Turn on diffuser in bedroom and leave bedside lamp on.
5. Make cup of hot tea and settle in my comfy chair in the library to read, watch YouTube videos or a couple of episodes of old sitcoms (currently I’m enjoying One Foot in the Grave, The Donna Reed Show and Leave it to Beaver).
6. Turn off downstairs lights, adjust thermostat and go upstairs.
7. Brush teeth, take meds, apply lotion and get in bed.
8. Do two crossword puzzles on my phone then read until sleepy.
This is definitely a work in progress for me but I know I’ll feel better and get more done if I make this evening routine a consistent habit.
More about sleep…
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