So, as you can see, I’m still thinking a lot about habits. In this post I listed a few of the healthy habits I have on the go right now. Some are new, some are old, but the one thing they have in common is that they seem to be working for me. Stressors aside, I have been feeling pretty good lately. I’ve also lost five niggling pounds over the past few weeks, so that may have something to do with it as well i.e. the fact that my pants aren’t squeezing the life out of me is making me happier/less grumpy overall.
Of the whole list, I think my going to bed at bedtime habit (a new habit!) has made one of the biggest, most positive changes in my life. It’s kind of a no brainer. I can’t even believe I’m writing this, actually, because we all KNOW we need more sleep. We all KNOW we need to get ourselves to bed at a decent hour. We KNOW that if we are tired we are crabby, and eat more. And if we’re tired we don’t do things like take the dog for a long walk, make it to yoga class, or tick things off our to-do lists.
Why is it so easy to tell our kids to go to bed, but so hard for us to do it?
Part of my epiphany goes back to that Gretchen Rubin book about habits I’ve been reading. Early in the book, she talks about owls and larks. (That is, people who like to stay up late v. people who function better in the morning.) Well, I never thought I’d say this, but I’m actually more a lark than a night owl. Although I certainly don’t lo-o-o-ve getting up from my warm bed in the morning, for some reason I am motivated to get stuff done at this time: I jump on the treadmill, use my Litebook, and get some writing done. (Also, coffee.)
So, back to bedtimes. Since I don’t exactly leap out of bed every morning, I thought maybe, MAYBE it might be a tiny tiny bit easier if I went to bed on time.
Here’s something else. This might sound weird, but I found it easier to tell myself to go to bed at 10 every night than to simply tell myself I need more sleep. With an actual time as a bedtime, I’m able to eliminate a lot of internal arguments I used to have with myself. With a 10 p.m. bedtime, I can say, without question, IT IS BEDTIME. It’s my new rule.
Last night Emma and I went to the gym. I showered when I got back (it was around 8:30 p.m.), brushed my teeth, and changed straight into my pajamas. At 10 I went to bed with my book (WHAT A LUXURY) and read until I was tired. It was lights out by 10:45 or so.
Since I’ve been going to bed at 10, I’ve actually felt well-rested. (!)
I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to figure this out. Do you have a bedtime? Are you an owl or a lark?
Share the post "Why is it so hard to go to bed at bedtime?"