Having trouble winding down at night to fall asleep? Studies show that creating a bedtime ritual can trigger our brains to shift gears from the busy hustle and bustle of the day to a slower more relaxed pace at night to ease into sleep faster.
Sidebar: In Love YU Collective vocabulary, ritual is a process where each step is intentional and an opportunity to focus on what we’re doing at that exact moment. Routine is mindlessly going through the motions with our thoughts on everything but what we’re doing (anyone ever put face wash on their toothbrush instead of toothpaste?).
It all starts in the mind! Let’s not think about going to sleep as a bedtime routine because then we’re operating on autopilot robotically going through the motions thinking of everything else but going to sleep. The trick here is to move with intention and recognize that each step is getting us one step closer to slipping into a good night’s sleep.
It may sound a little weird for some of you but there is science to back up the idea of operating with intention so stay with us and give it a chance! We’ve created a Sleep Ritual for you to try at night. Give it a week and let us know how it worked for you!
Love YU Collective Sleep Ritual
Set the atmosphere
- Aroma is a powerful trigger to the brain so let’s use it to our advantage
- Find a Room and Linen spray that’s relaxing and use it only at night when getting ready for bed
- Intention: Sleep is going to be good and deep.
- Now is the time to cue that playlist with ocean sounds, rain storms, or any other relaxing white noise
- Only play these sounds during your Sleep Ritual to train the brain to connect these sounds with peaceful sleep
- Intention: Listen to the details in the sounds, pay attention to the swell of the ocean or picture the rain droplets hitting the window
- We’re trying to get the mind to slow down and focus on what happening right now)
- Can the lights be turned down? Can they turn a different color?
- Is there something that can be done from visual standpoint to train the brain to say “Oh I know what’s about to go down”?
- If not, that’s ok between the scent and sounds those could be enough.
- Sometimes there’s scents or sounds to cut through the stress that we have going on which is where supplements come into play. These can reduce stress hormone levels that, when elevated for longer periods of time due to chronic stress, interfere with our bodies ability to relax
- While cleansing the skin, lean into it and enjoy the experience
- Gently, slowly, in circular motions massage the face cleanser onto the skin
- With eyes closed, enjoy the microcirculation from the massage as it ever so slightly warms the cheeks.
- Be eased into a state of relaxation from the gentle massage
- Intention: Stay in the moment and focus on the movement as it slowly makes its way around the face
- Follow the same steps but this time focusing on the entire body.
- After cleansing then we need to moisturize, this is another opportunity to allow a relaxing aroma to send signals to the brain that it is sleep time.
- Lovingly massage the cream or oil onto the body
In the Bed
- Prayer, breath work, guided mediation- pick whichever is preferred, we just highly encourage taking the time to do it!
- Eye masks help to block out light triggering the production of melatonin* (hormone produced by our bodies in higher concentrations signaling to our bodies that it’s time to time)
That’s it! We’ve provided the framework now let’s get the best sleep of our lives!
*studies point to it but more work needs to be done in that area.