Since the pandemic began, it might feel like your life has been thrown off balance, with productivity and motivation going down the drain. A lot of people find their good habits vanishing right as COVID-19 hits its stride. It’s not surprising.
With several working at home amidst the pandemic, the structure that you’ve grown accustomed to may have disappeared, taking your energy along with it. However, it doesn’t have to be that way.
Establishing a good night routine can help you get back on the right track. Each item on your routine will be a simple task, making it easy to get started and add some of that balance back into your life. You can do these before you sleep, and find yourself waking up more refreshed than ever!
Below are some good ideas for habits for the night.
Night Habits To Help Increase Your Productivity
1. Having A Shut Down Time
Find a time that you want to start your routine consistently every night. Figure out when you want to go to sleep, and plan out enough time for you to get through your routine without rushing at night. If you want to sleep by midnight, maybe begin the process of preparing for bed at 11 PM.
When you hit this time of your choosing, try and turn off your devices. Research has shown that blue light emitted from electronics can be detrimental to sleeping, and limiting exposure to them an hour before bed can work wonders.
In addition, taking this hour before bed to yourself, without the constant barrage of notifications, can help you settle down and relax. What’s important is consistency – try to shut down at the same time every night, rather than aiming for just a few nights in the week.
2. Planning The Next Day
One of the biggest productivity boosters is to plan for the next day. Typically, your plan for the morning should be:
- Specific: Make sure to detail exactly what the tasks are that you want to accomplish.
- Possible: Don’t plan more than you could accomplish, or you may find yourself losing motivation.
- Important: Write down the most urgent tasks that you want to get done, not tasks that are fun but not necessary.
- Written: Get a small notepad, or even just type it on your phone. Documenting what you plan to do the next day is correlated with a higher chance of actually doing the tasks.
How many items should you put on that task list? Typically, you don’t want to have more than three items, or priorities, in a day. If you find yourself with several more tasks that need doing, you can write them down as well.
It’s important to make a note to yourself that these are not necessary to do, unlike your three main goals for the day. Having too many tasks could overwhelm you, and keep you from accomplishing any of them.
3. Reflect Over The Current Day
Take a chance to think about what you’ve done today that worked. Celebrate your small accomplishments, and look over areas you can improve. Did you exercise today? Awesome! Managed to eat 30 chicken nuggets during your diet? Not so awesome.
Regardless of how your day went, make sure you acknowledge the good and the bad, not just one of those two. Focus only on the good, and you lose the chance for self-improvement. Focus solely on the bad, and you’ll lose motivation to continue.
One good way to reflect is by using a journal so that you can record your thoughts as well, and look back over them in the future. It helps to write down three items of gratitude as well for each day, just to have a bit of positivity in your entries. If you’re also trying to plan out your day, feel free to write down goals for the next day in your journal as well!
4. Have Some Light Reading
Right before you sleep, maybe grab a relaxing book and flip through a few pages. Nights are quiet and a perfect time to keep up with some reading, provided you don’t get carried away and stay up too late. This way, you’ll be building a good habit all while getting ready for a restful night of sleep.
Maybe find a few of your favorite nonfiction books, or skim over a light fiction novel by your favorite author! Learn about some new potential habits or immerse yourself in another’s imagination. It’s all up to you and your personal tastes.
5. Prepare For The Morning
Set out some clothes you’re thinking about wearing the next day, and have a glass of water to drink by your bedside for when you wake up. Think about all the things that future you might want right as they wake up. By easing the process when you wake up the next morning, you’ll be able to make it easier for yourself to get started with your priorities.
Some ideas you could use are:
- Picking an outfit for the next day
- Having your priorities list already on your desk
- Cleaning your room
- Having water in the room
That’s not an extensive list, but it does offer enough ideas for you to get started.
Having habits at night is a good way to help get your productivity back on track. As long as you’re consistent, any of these can improve the amount of motivation in your life. Soon, you’ll be even better than how you were before the pandemic hit.
With every habit you pick up, you’ll just be helping future you. That’s not so bad, is it?