Quality sleep is essential for your quality of life. In fact, getting at least six to eight hours of sleep each night contributes to alertness, focus, decision-making, immunity, and mood. But before you can get a good night’s sleep, you have to fall asleep. As a gig worker, you may struggle to turn off your mind at night and give yourself permission to rest. Here’s a bedtime routine you can try as you invest in yourself and prepare to function fully each day.
Finish Unresolved Tasks
Your to-do list, work pressures or other everyday challenges may legit keep you awake. Take back your sleep when you finish unresolved tasks and destress before you try to snooze.
First, write your thoughts in a journal. Spend as little or as much time as you need clearing your mind.
Next, write a to-do list of the top things you want to do the next day. This list helps you jumpstart your next day and put the current day to bed.
Then store a pen and paper beside your bed. Use these tools to quickly jot down all the thoughts that keep you awake.
Finally, give yourself permission to rest. Sure, you have a lot going on in your life, but you help no one – including yourself – if you are overtired.
Unplug and Turn Off the Lights
Your gig may require you to be online and available at all times during the day, but reserve bedtime for sleeping. Set your morning alarm, then turn off your phone, tablet, TV, and other electronics at least two hours before you plan to fall asleep. Otherwise, the blue light could suppress your brain’s melatonin production and keep you awake.
And remember that your clients, social media and favorite TV shows will all be waiting for you in the morning. You’ll do a better job at work – and sleep better – if you guard your rest time and truly unplug.
Wind Down With Relaxing Bedtime Routine
In addition to reserving your room for sleep and going to bed at the same time each day, practice a few healthy sleep habits in the hour or two before bedtime. Consistency trains your body and brain to sleep.
Here are 14 relaxing suggestions you can try based on your preferences, personality and needs.
- Soak in a warm bath.
- Perform gentle stretching or yoga.
- Drink warm decaffeinated herbal tea.
- Enjoy a light snack.
- Set out your clothing for the next morning.
- Turn down the thermostat.
- Pull the drapes or use an eye mask.
- Meditate and breathe deeply.
- Inhale lavender, chamomile or another calming scent.
- Listen to calming music.
- Write in a worry journal.
- Count sheep and your blessings.
- Read a boring book or magazine.
- Turn on white noise or insert earplugs.
Your mind, body and emotions need sleep. Try this bedtime routine tonight, and see if it helps you fall asleep. Then wake up rested to tackle your day and succeed as an independent worker in the gig economy.
About the Author: Jennifer Turner writes web content for a variety of clients. As a gig worker, she understands the benefits and challenges of the industry, which is why she prioritizes daily self-care. Find her at WriterAccess.