Feeling stressed lately, or finding it difficult to relax? You’re not alone! It’s normal to have trouble winding down after a long day.
Try this evening routine to quiet your body and mind and prepare yourself for a restful night of zzz’s.
Quick tips for getting started
- Silence your devices. If possible, put your phone on silent to allow yourself a mental break from the stimulation of screen time.
- Listen to your body. There is no right or wrong way to wind down. Always honor your own instincts, and give your body what it needs in the moment. “Rest” looks different to each of us.
- Ask for support. It’s okay to include other people in your down time (so long as their presence is relaxing!) If you find yourself distracted or struggling to wind down, open up to someone close in your life.
Try this soothing routine for calming vibes:
- Set the scene
Set the scene wherever you are for relaxation. This looks differently for everyone, but it may include tidying up, changing into comfy clothes, or sliding a “do not disturb” sign on your door to keep roommates away.
Pro tip: Don’t leave all of your daily chores for the evening, or you may find your chill time replaced with cleaning time (and that’s the opposite of relaxing!) Instead, consider designating time each morning for tidying up before kicking off your day.
2. Wrap up your to do list
Wrap up any fleeting tasks or to do’s that might distract you from rest, like sending a last email, feeding your pet, or throwing your phone on the charger.
Pro tip: It may help to automate a “do not disturb” setting on your devices to block unnecessary distractions during hours you dedicate for rest.
3. Engage your senses
If you have a candle or another kind of aromatherapy, get it going! Or if you’d prefer, throw together a quick comfort food like a batch of chocolate chip cookies. Perhaps a hot bubble bath will bring on the calm. Awakening the senses can actually calm the mind!
Pro tip: If you’d love to bathe, but don’t have a tub, fill up a bucket with hot water and enjoy a DIY foot soak! As long as you’re making your body feel satisfied, you’re on the right track.
4. Release your feels
Release your feels anyway you’re called to. Get creative! Write in your journal, make a playlist, draw with your eyes shut; there’s no wrong way to express yourself, but it often helps to release anything stirring on the inside.
Not sure where to start? Take out your phone and voice record your feelings. Whether you choose to look back on the recording one day or delete it immediately, it may feel good to simply voice how you feel.
Pro tip: If you’re not feeling creative, try a simple breathing exercise. Close your eyes, and breathe in four five seconds and out for five seconds. When it comes to release, whatever works for you is right.
5. Give yourself some love
End your night with a surprise for tomorrow. Write a little love note to yourself, and leave it out to discover in the morning. You’ll awake to a reminder that you are strong, you are worthy, and you are everything.
Pro tip: If you find yourself doing this often, it may be fun to save your love notes to self in a special box or envelope so you can look back on them later.
Different things feel good for everyone – so no matter how you choose to wind down for the evening, be sure to recognize your growth. The acknowledgement that you’re experimenting with self-care is something to feel proud about!
For more healing techniques, including journal prompts and other relaxing routines, sign up for our Healing Newsletter!
If an evening routine just isn’t enough, you have support. You may want to explore therapy, and we can help you navigate which kind of therapy might be right for you. If you want to speak with a crisis counselor for support, please text Leda to 741741. We offer free and confidential crisis counseling in partnership with the Crisis Text Line, and we encourage you to use it anytime you’re in need.