From the moment we get up in the morning, it is usually a continual rush from one task to the other, leaving us exhausted when we open the front door at the day’s end. Waking up with a list of 20 things to do before even the first sip of coffee can be a source of anxiety, but what if you could set yourself up for a stress-free day by adding a few simple habits into your evening routine? According to a study conducted by Duke University, 45 per cent of our day-to-day actions are automated through the habits we form. By establishing positive evening rituals, you will not only be in for a good night’s rest, but will set yourself up for a better day ahead.
1. Get your blood pumping:
Whether you go for a run outside or do yoga in your living room, engaging in 20 to 30 minutes of exercise daily is very good for you, both mentally and physically. As the majority of us sit at a desk all day, it is important to get our bodies moving after being hunched over a computer. Take the stresses of the work day out during your evening exercise routine and go to bed with a fresh mind, body and soul. Exercising will also tire you out and, therefore, actually allow you to have a good night’s sleep.
2. Lay off the caffeine:
You might start your day with a large cappuccino, but come nightfall when you are planning to relax, the last thing you should put in your system is caffeine. In the evenings, make yourself a cup of herbal tea to unwind. Not only does it have soothing effects, drinking herbal tea provides antioxidants that are beneficial to your digestive health. Why not experiment and add different ingredients, such as mint leaves or chamomile, to your basic herbal teas? The options are endless and the different combinations can reap further benefits.
3. Take a hot bath:
As they say, your body is a temple and there’s nothing better than treating yourself to a nice hot bubble bath after a long day. It’s a great way to calm your muscles and let the problems of today slip away. Light some candles, put on some soft music and sprinkle in some bath salts to truly indulge in a relaxing atmosphere. Once you’re done, you will feel fresh and ready to conquer tomorrow after a long, restful night’s sleep.
4. Detox from your phone:
A lot of us stare at screens all day in the office. The last thing that our eyes need is another screen to stare at all evening. However tempting social media may be, set yourself a cut-off time for using your phone and laptop. Give yourself at least an hour before you sleep away from your electronics. If you feel restless, try engaging your mind by reading a book, doing a crossword puzzle, or calling a friend who you may not have spoken to in a while instead.
5. Prepare for the morning:
Take time to organise what you can the night before, so that the following day is relatively stress-free. Choose and iron your outfit and pre-pack your lunch before going to bed. This will allow extra time in the morning to get ready (or snooze for a bit longer). Also, go through the upcoming day’s schedule to keep any meetings or deadlines at the forefront of mind. Knowing your priorities will allow you to plan your day better.