Building A Nightly Routine That Works

We’ve touched on my habit of procrastination before, and as part of my effort to get past it, I’ve spent a lot of time working on my nightly routine.  Building an effective nightly routine is key to a good nights sleep and a less stressful morning. It also sounds way more difficult than it actually is.

nightly routine gilmore girls rory can't finish all this and sleep at the same time

Silly Rory, you CAN do it all and get some sleep (if the kids let you), so let’s break down the elements of mine.

Blitz It

nightly routine cleaning blitz gilmore girls rory decluttering cleaning

Spend 15 minutes blitzing around the house getting things tidy.  Put away toys, tackle Mount WashingBasketTon or wipe down counters. Then spend another 15 minutes on a specific room, doing the things you never have time to do, like decluttering.  Not sure where to start? Check out a program like Unfuck Your Habitat or FlyLady.

Get A Head Start

nightly routine gilmore girls rory plan dragons gif

Think about your mornings. Work out which tasks cause you the most stress and try to get them done the night before. I absolutely loathe making lunches first thing in the morning, and go into a panic if I have to find clothes. Getting these things done the night before means far less to worry about.

Me Time

gilmore girls nightly routine me time kirk gym gif

This is the most important and yet it’s often the most neglected. Give yourself at least a half hour to decompress and do whatever it is you do to empty your mind of the day’s worries. Go for a walk, draw, yoga, meditate.  Do something for yourself at the end of every day, because dammit – you’re worth it.

Get It On Paper

nightly routine gilmore girls paris gellar writing list enemies

Still have worries about tomorrow rattling around in your head? Write it all down. Once it’s down on paper and formed into tangible goals, you will feel you’ve done something about them and it will help stop you grinding about your worries all night long.

 Switch Off

nightly routine gilmore girls tv watching it's a show dean rory

Pretty much every sleep expert tells us that electronic devices are the enemy of sleep but let’s be honest, for most of us switching off for a half hour before bed is just never going to happen.  For the tech obsessed like me, there are some ways to mitigate the damage screen time can do to your night’s sleep, such as turning your iPhone onto Night Shift or using an e-ink reader (such as a Kindle) instead of an iPad.


Have you got a great nightly routine? Share in the comments or join the confessional over at My Home Truths!


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  1. Really great tips! I am getting a bit better at turning technology off before bed, but I’m still impartial to the odd Instagram scroll.

  2. I tried a lot of these things over the weekend and still felt blah. Usually lists help me but this past week I’m just stressed over how MUCH is going on in the next few months. I know I deal with things well, but I’d rather be doing than not, and when you’re in the immediate lead-up, there’s nothing you can do.
    Or something like that.

  3. I would totally have an awesome nightly routine like this if my son didnt wake up and need to be nursed every time I tried doing something productive. Seriously, im almost positive he has a sixth sense that tells him every time I’m about to do something other than netflix binge. (Also the abundance of Gilmore Girls gifs in this post made me so happy).

    1. oh god that can be the worst! I’m truly lucky with my son – sleeping has ever been one of his talents 😉 Embarrassingly I just discovered Gilmore Girls last week!

  4. Night routines are great. If I don’t do my routine – write out my to do list for the next day, quick tidy/spruce of the house, get clothes ready for the morning etc. I don’t sleep as well and the next day doesn’t run as smooth.

  5. Clothes out, bags packed for all the family is a must – as is preparing through to the end if the next night (ie meals chosen and ingredients preferably bought if not scheduled – plus everything organised for after school activities). It all falls apart in the morning otherwise. I’m still working on getting to bed early enough though – a work in progress!

  6. I don’t have a great nightly routine, I am all over the shop lol.
    I do like to do things though before I go to bed, so they’re not there in the morning and I can start afresh.
    I’m also psyching myself as the weather is getting better and the days are getting longer for walks after dinner, all by myself. A lot gets processed in my head on my walks 😉

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