a peek inside the fishbowl

23 Oct, 2020

Bedtime routines for grown ups

Posted by andrea tomkins in: Misc. life

Why is it considered lame if you go to bed early?

If there have ever been young children in your life you probably already have a keen understanding of the importance of going to bed at a reasonable hour.

Let’s be frank. When our kids didn’t get enough sleep, they were, ahem, rather hard to live with the next day. The interesting thing about bedtime is that the events leading up actual bed time (bath, teeth brushing, story, changing into pjs, dimming of the lights, etc.) were an important part of that too. Those things were a cue for their small bodies. A signal that it’s time to wind down and get on that train to Dreamland.

At what point did my own bedtime routine fall apart? I can’t even say. I do know that for many years, my routine consisted of me, falling asleep on the couch while we watched a show. Sometimes I simply dropped my weary body into bed. I bought face wipes for the times that I didn’t even have the energy to wash my face.

It occurred to me that I’d solve a lot of my problems, and dare I say, improve my life, if I just gave myself a bedtime, like we used to do with our kids. So every night around 9:30 p.m. (YES, REALLY) I put my phone on the charger and head upstairs to begin my bedtime routine.

By starting my routine a bit early, at a time which might seem a bit early to many, it meant I suddenly had time to do the things I wanted and needed to do, things I wasn’t really doing before, like flossing and writing in my journal and adhering to a proper skin care routine. When I’m in bed early, it also means I have more time to read before I pass out. This is a real treat.

It’s worth noting that I am almost always asleep by 10:30 p.m.

Going to bed early also means that I am able to wake up a bit early and do the things I want and need to do before I start my work day. I enjoy a leisurely coffee, do a 10-minute guided meditation, a yoga routine*, eat breakfast, and go for a brisk walk on the treadmill or outdoors if it’s nice enough.

On most days, I feel rested and better equipped to deal with stress or worry. I’d call that a win!


*This is just a fancy way of saying I do some stretching, but it’s really helped me. More about this later!



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The Obligatory Blurb

My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our dog Piper who is kind of a big deal on Instagram. We also have two human daughters: Emma (20) and Sarah (18). During the day I work as a writer at The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999. The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, family travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa for families. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

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