7 Genius Things To Do Before Bed To Have a Successful Morning
I’ve written previously about decision fatigue which is where we become mentally drained from making decision after decision throughout the day which leads to us either making a bad decision or not making any decision at all. Whilst this may not sound like a big deal, it unfortunately can be if you are trying to grow in life and be successful.
There are some things that you can do before you go to bed for the following day that will greatly benefit you. If you’ve woken up tired and grumpy (just me?!) the last thing you want to do is stumble around finding things, putting outfits together, making lunch, whilst battling with your kids to put their school uniforms and find whichever item they have managed to lose that day (it’s normally school shoes in this house!).
Decision fatigue isn’t just some mumbo-jumbo – it’s a scientific fact, and the more that you reduce your decision fatigue, the better off you will be each day. This is the real deal you guys!
I don’t know about you, but being organised and therefore less stressed sounds like the perfect world to me. Who wants to be running around like a crazy person looking for things and being exhausted an hour into the day?! I personally want to start the day off well, and when I do, I am full of optimism and energy for the day. It is no coincidence that this is also when I get my best work done.
My aim in life is to be as happy as possible, and I hope that yours is the same – so by doing these things I hope that you will have an extraordinary day every day – because you deserve it.
Go to bed at a reasonable time
Don’t worry if you’re guilty of this – I am too! I work a lot from home and always have a ton of things I need to do, so I think that staying up late to do them will be the best thing to do. I don’t recommend going to bed with something important hanging over you that you needed to complete – but hopefully if you follow these steps you won’t have that problem.
Going to bed at a reasonable time will ensure that you are well rested. We need sleep in order to heal within, digest our food properly, and recover from the day. We need to be horizontal for these things to happen, and we need about 8 hours sleep a night. This is obviously different for everyone, but 8 hours is what you should strive for.
It sounds obvious, but work it out. If you are going to get up at 7am, that means that you should be tucked up in bed by 11pm at the latest.
If you find it difficult to remember to go to bed at a certain time, especially if you are like me and find it tiring to heave yourself off the sofa, you could always set an alarm to remind you that it is time to wake your way upstairs.
Make goals for the next day
It is no secret that I am obsessed with lists – but when you have a busy life, it can be easy to let it all get away from you and find yourself doing time-draining activities which aren’t getting you where you want to be.
Think about what you need to do the following day, and make a list. Make sure that you have at (or near) the top the one which you reallyyyy don’t want to do. This is called eating your frog. Haven’t heard of this before? I’ve spoken about it before in my post How To Make Time to Make More Money – it’s a term coined by Nicolas Chamfort, and the quote is thus: “If it’s your job to eat a frog, it’s best to do it first thing in the morning. And if it’s your job to eat two frogs, it’s best to eat the biggest one first.”
What he means by this is that you should do the biggest, most annoying task first thing in the morning. If you don’t, you will put it off and off and it will never get done! By getting the most arduous task done, you will also feel a great sense of accomplishment. So putting this at the top of the list you are making is a great way to prepare!
It doesn’t have to be an exhaustive list of every single thing that you need to do, but rather the things that you need to do in order to achieve whichever objective you wish to by the end of the day.
Get your clothes ready
This is one of the best things that you can do to reduce decision fatigue; the less decisions that we have to make in the morning, the better. Ideally you will have a capsule wardrobe full of similar items so you don’t have to dilly-dally over which outfit to pick – but if not, you’ll still be fine if you pick out your outfit the night before.
As well as my outfit I also get out my underwear, and make sure I know where my hairbrush is too (is it just me that constantly loses my brush?). You could also get your shoes and handbag ready too.
This can include children as well – it’s very beneficial to your sanity to have their school clothes laid out the night before. I put my daughters on the sofa ready. I also make sure that her shoes are in the shoe cupboard as well so that we can grab them quickly. This may also be a good tip for you also: I keep her hairbrush on the windowsill in the living room so I can hand it to her to brush her hair quickly in the morning, and I always keep a hairband downstairs with it as well in case she wants her hair up that day.
This may sound time draining but it’s really not – and it is worth it in the morning when you can just grab everything because it’s all there, and be on your merry way!
Get your food ready
One of the biggest killers of the budget is food shopping, especially when it comes to not being prepared for lunchtime. In order to avoid this happening to you, you could make your lunch the night before, so that in the morning you don’t have to remember to do it, or feel like you just don’t have the time – because it’s already ready for you to just pop in your bag.
Same goes for kids as well – get their packed lunch ready and you won’t be faffing over it when you need to be dropping them off at school in 10 seconds time! These will all greatly reduce decision fatigue as well because you won’t be making all of these little decisions first thing in the morning.
This doesn’t just apply to lunch either – you could get your breakfast ready the night before too, depending on what you have. If you have cereal you could prepare something like overnight oats, or you could stick the slow cooker on the night before to have fresh porridge in the morning. Don’t forget to get your coffee machine ready too!
Turn off electronic devices at least an hour before bed
Sounds like an obvious thing to do, but many of us don’t do it (yes, me included! Just obsessed with Instagram…). There have been many studies which show that watching TV, or playing on your phone late at night just before bed is detrimental to your health and can stop you from falling asleep easily.
There are other things that you can do as you wind down for the night, such as read a book (people such as Barack Obama and Bill Gates are well-known for reading for 30 minutes before bed), and the ideas on this list of course!
Reflect on the day
This is a great way to see how well your day went and what you can improve on the following day. If you practice gratitude for each day, you will be much happier in life in general. You could use a journal for this such as this one.I Am Here Now: A creative mindfulness guide and journal.
Prepare yourself for a lovely night of sleep
I don’t know about you, but I could always be doing with some more sleep, but some nights no matter how exhausted I am, it can take me a while to drop off! These are usually few and far between though, as I’m usually so exhausted I pass straight out…!
I know a few people who suffer with not being able to drift off to sleep straight away, and having a bedtime routine can definitely help you do this. Bedtime routines are not just for babies – but there is a reason why they are a good idea for babies, and it is the same for us too. As with all habits, it’s about training our brain. When we do the same things every day, our brain recognises them and prepares for what is about to come (in this case, sleep!).
Some things that you can do to prepare your body for sleep are:
- Have a bath. Same as with babies, it can be really relaxing to have a warm bath before bedtime. Make sure that you dry off completely before getting into bed though!
- Use essential oils. This is not something that I have personally tried, but I have heard other people have great success using essential oils, especially ones like lavender.
- Watch relaxing videos. Ok, this may seem to contrast with my advice about turning off electronic equipment before, but bear with me! Something that I stumbled across myself makes me fall asleep almost instantly. You may think I’m nuts if you don’t have this yourself, but if you do have it and haven’t heard of it before, you will love me forever. It’s the best thing! What am I talking about? ASMR of course. It stands for Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response. According to Wikipedia, it is:
Autonomous sensory meridian response (ASMR) is an experience characterised by a static-like or tingling sensation on the skin that typically begins on the scalp and moves down the back of the neck and upper spine. It has been compared with auditory-tactile synesthesia.
ASMR signifies the subjective experience of “low-grade euphoria” characterised by “a combination of positive feelings and a distinct static-like tingling sensation on the skin”. It is most commonly triggered by specific acoustic, visual and digital media stimuli, and less commonly by intentional attentional control.
I spend wayyyy too long watching ASMR videos on Youtube, and I encourage that you check them out too.
Just a little note that there are lots of other things that you can do as well, such as tidy up the house, do the washing up etc, but these are just some ideas that you may not have thought of that I thought that I would share!
What do you think? Is there anything you could do the night before to lead to more success?