The Best Night Routine For Deep Sleep and Upward Spiral Success
Updated: Mar 6, 2021
One of the most common things I hear from people who want to become more disciplined and focused, is that they don't know where to start.
If you're looking to get out of a rut, become more disciplined, or just flat-out get your life together - this article shares the best night routine that will help you do just that.
The truth is - tomorrow's morning is dictated by what you do this evening. Your preparation (or lack thereof) for tomorrow, will ultimately carry into tomorrow and either make you or break you.
Bringing consistency into your morning and night routines; is the absolute best way to establish discipline, positive momentum, and upward spirals in your life - especially if you are going through a difficult time.
Together, a great morning routine and a great night routine serve as the bookends to a great life.
Today I’m going to share with you probably one of the best night routines out there.
If you follow this routine regularly - you’ll find yourself well rested, and ready to tackle the next day with an enormous amount of focus, energy, drive, and wisdom each day.
Let’s get to it.
When Do You Need a Night Routine?
Without a night routine – you’ll probably end up staying up later than you should, you’ll have a rough sleep, and you’ll miss out on the quick and easy opportunity to set yourself up for success with the next day.
All of this adds up to a less effective day starting that next morning that you wake-up. This then carries into the next day, and the next day - and so on, till it shapes up an entire week, month, year, and lifetime.
Your days matter. One squandered day may not seem like such a big deal – but in the big picture, those days add up over time into large opportunities missed for you.
This is why you need a night routine.
If you want to be on your A-game, be productive, and absolutely crush your day tomorrow – your regular nightly habits probably aren’t going to cut it.
Spending excessive time on your phone, watching videos, or scrolling social media before bed - makes you tired and unfocused the next day.
Watching Netflix shows or movies before bed - keeps you up later than you should be and eats into your valuable recovery time (7-8 hours of sleep should be your target) .
Partying when you shouldn't be (no-brainer) - is going to make you groggy and unmotivated the next day.
No matter how good your morning routine is, or how well you prepare for a day, the day of – what you do the night before will always have a tremendous impact on how effective you can be that next day.
It literally puts a ceiling on how effective you can be that next day - how good your night routine is, determines how high that ceiling can be.
If you are in the habit of squandering the night before, it’ll always slow you down and impact your whole next day – and so from this, a vicious cycle occurs and repeats.
You blow it the night before – you wake up tired, groggy, unfocused and, your day crushes you.
Spread this out over long periods of time, more and more squandered nights (and days) – and you’ve let tremendous opportunities for progress and breakthroughs pass you by.
The opposite is also true however, and there is a large opportunity in implementing a night routine – if you crush it the night before with your routine, do the right things (which we’ll get into), you’ll be setting yourself up for a great day the next day in which you crush it.
From this a virtuous cycle occurs and repeats, spiralling you upwards.
You crush it the night before – you wake up energized, focused, and ready to own your day (and your life)!
P.S: a night routine isn’t necessary everyday – especially if you use your weekends to relax and have fun. I suggest using a night routine only on the nights before your work days, or the days where you want to be productive! It’ll be well worth it.
What Makes a Great Night Routine:
A great night routine hits home on four key results:
Preparing You For The Next Day
Relieving Stress & Relaxing You
Preparing You For Deep Sleep / Subconscious Programming
Nagging thoughts can keep you up all night – it is important to engage in self-reflection/introspection to get these nagging thoughts out of your mind and onto your journal paper.
This is why it’s important to engage in introspection before bed; it’ll get these nagging thoughts out of your mind and onto your journal paper – allowing you to close the book on the previous day and relax.
Each day of yours will have its own fair share of wins, losses, and learnings on what you did that day – within each of those, are valuable insights that will lead you to becoming a much better version of yourself.
Don’t neglect your actions, don’t neglect your losses, and don’t neglect your wins.
You must learn to acknowledge them each day, and learn from them. Once you do that – you can truly close the book on a day and get the most out of it.
A great night routine will include introspection to ensure that you learn all that you can from the previous day, reflect on it, and ultimately close the book on it – so that you don’t have nagging thoughts keeping you up all night.
Preparing You For The Next Day:
This sets you up for success; by enabling you to perform better and focus on what’s important.
Preparing yourself for tomorrow is important because it sets you up for success; by enabling you to perform better tomorrow and to focus better tomorrow.
Extend these high-performance, highly focused days out over a long period of time – and it is inevitable that you achieve your goals (whatever they are).
There is a reason why Mark Zuckerberg has tomorrow’s clothes neatly laid out for him before he goes to bed, and has a wardrobe that minimizes decision making (all his clothes are the same!).
Doing this allows him to focus his energy and thoughts on more important decisions relating to his purpose/work, tomorrow.
Why would you want to exhaust your thoughts on small decisions like ‘what should I wear today’? when you could be using your thoughts on things like “how can I make more money today?” or “how can I achieve X goal?”
Again – having all your clothes be the same is an extreme; however, the fundamental truth is there – you can set yourself up for success tomorrow, by eliminating low ROI decisions / activities and doing them the night before.
Doing simple things like preparing your clothes the night before, preparing your to-do list the night before, and by doing meal preps for the week each Sunday – you’re going to save a ton of time, energy, and focus (mental ‘freshness’) – and save your brain-power for the more important things in your life.
For the small fraction of time these things take to do – they pay far bigger benefits the next day; and it is noticeable.
Relieving Stress & Relaxing You:
Without relaxing yourself or relieving stress before bed; your mind will be racing and keeping you up all night – it is important to relieve stress & relax yourself before bed.
Without relaxing your mind and relieving stress before bed – your mind will have your thoughts continuously racing, and keeping you up all night.
Especially after a long day of grinding, being out and doing things, your mind has become so accustomed to being stimulated, and thinking at a rapid pace throughout the day - it is absolutely crucial that you gradually wind it down before bed and begin to relax it, before you sleep.
A great night routine will account for this; it’ll relax you, relieve stress, and prime you for sleeping.
Preparing You For Deep Sleep / Subconscious Programming:
Hypnotherapy is real.
Our minds are not rigid, they are adaptable, flexible, and change over time. On top of this, it’s been scientifically proven that our minds absorb messages while we sleep (almost in a hypnotic state).
This is why it is important that you monitor and ensure that your last thoughts before bed are growth-oriented, or are in favour of your goals. Your mind will be taking note of these thoughts, and actually be rewiring your belief systems for the next 7-8 hours while you sleep.
Would you rather your last thoughts before bed/hypnotherapy be in relation to that Family Guy episode you’re watching?
Or would you rather them be in relation to your dream life, conquering important challenges, and achieving the ambitious goals you’ve set for yourself?
The Ultimate Night Routine:
The ultimate night routine is as follows:
1. Prepare Tomorrow’s Clothes & To Do List
2. Warm Shower
3. Minimize Light & Put Your Phone Far Away From Your Bed
4. Nightly Journal Routine
Depending on your goals, career, and lifestyle – the time you go to bed and wakeup will vary according to each person.
Regardless - let’s unpack these further.
Step 1 - Prepare Tomorrow's Clothes & To-Do List:
The night routine begins with preparation for tomorrow.
These aren’t overly mentally draining decisions – they include: preparing the clothes you will wear tomorrow, and preparing your to-do list for tomorrow.
The main reason you do this is because it sets you up for success tomorrow, you are able to hit the ground running and preserve your focus/energy and focus it on more important matters relating to your goals and the challenges you’re looking to conquer, as soon as you wake-up.
You wake-up, your clothes are ready for you, and you already have your to-do list and you know what you must accomplish for the day.
Our mental bandwidth, and focus is truly a resource. We want to spend it on things that truly matter.
By preparing your clothes and your to-do list the night before, you’re setting yourself up for a productive and focused day tomorrow.
Step 2 - Warm Shower:
This is where we officially begin the process of winding down and preparing ourselves for sleep. You are going to take a warm shower before bed. Cold showers are for the morning; when you want to wake-up, save your warm showers for night, when you want to relax, relieve stress, and fall asleep shortly after.
Warm showers before bed have been scientifically proven to help you fall asleep much faster. A warm shower heats you up temporarily, and then when you come out, that water evaporates from your skin – cooling you down, and signalling to your brain and body that it is time to sleep.
Warm showers not only relax you, and relieve stress before bed – but they also help to produce melatonin to help you sleep.
The last thing you want is your body to have a spike of adrenaline or energy before bed, it’ll simply keep you up longer.
A warm shower will begin the process of preparing you for deep sleep, and waking up well-rested tomorrow.
Step 3 - Minimize Light & Put Your Phone Away From Your Bedside
As we continue to prime ourselves for a deep sleep; it is extremely important to (1) minimize the light in your room (turn off lights, TV, close your blinds), and (2) put your phone out of arms reach (preferably so you have to stand up to get it).
The reason we minimize light is because light signals to your brain/body that you should stay awake. It actually prevents the production of melatonin (primary hormone responsible for putting you to sleep).
By minimizing light, you are removing a simple roadblock that keeps so many of us awake later than we should be; and it allows your body to relax, wind down, and fall asleep sooner.
The reason we put our phone out of arms reach from our bedside is because we don’t want to be consuming anything that is going to be stimulating our mind and getting our thoughts racing before bed. The more videos you watch, social media you browse, and the more endless loops of your phone you engage in before bed – the longer you stay awake.
It doesn’t help that are phones can be so damn captivating. This is why we must remove the temptation and put it far away from our bed-side, so we don’t reach for it while in bed.
The benefits of putting your phone far away from your bed side include winding down/sleeping sooner, and also strengthening your own inner will-power (remember - you don’t want anything to have control over you, you want to be in control always).
Not to mention – with your phone being far away, and only reachable by standing up and walking over to it; you’re actually setting yourself up for success tomorrow by forcing yourself to get up and turn your alarm off (rather than just hitting that snooze button from your bed-side).
Sleeping in and hitting ‘snooze’ can be a real goal and dream killing habit.
Together these two will prepare you for a deep, well-rested sleep, while also setting you up for success tomorrow morning by forcing you to get up once that alarm goes.
Step 4 - Nightly Journal Routine
This is by far one of the most important steps of this entire routine.
Break out your journal, grab a pen and write down three headings: (1) Wins from Today, (2) RFI from Today (aka Room for Improvement), and (3) Three Desires/Intentions of Mine
For each of these three headings you’re going to be writing down three things.
Wins from today – write down three things that went well today for you. This may be three things that you are proud of, or are excited about. This could include breakthroughs, progress, advancing towards your goals, or conquering a fear or challenge of yours.
RFI from Today – write down three things that you could have done better today, or could have been better. This might include any lapses of discipline, focus, or laziness. It might include hitting snooze, missing a workout, or not ‘doing something you know you should have done’. (P.S. there will always be room for improvement, in all areas of your life – even the most successful people can identify tons of areas for improvement in their own days).
Three Desires/Intentions of Yours for Subconscious Programming – write down three desires, goals, or wishes of yours. This will be anything you desire to do, be, or have. Write them down in the affirmative ‘I will do ...” or “I will be ...” or “I will have ...”.
This is where we close the book on the previous day, and gather all the learnings that we can from it.
Introspection honestly paves the road to success. It reveals to you blind spots, common patterns, and tendencies about yourself that you usually ignore/don’t recognize during the day.
By identifying wins from the day, you are able to cultivate pride, respect, and excitement around yourself, your purpose, and the pathway you are on. It’ll also reveal to you what things you should ‘keep’ doing.
By identifying room for improvement from the day, you are able to identify lapses of discipline, focus, or judgement in your own actions and decisions; and in turn, improve on them. This reveals to you what to ‘stop’ doing or what to ‘avoid’ doing.
By writing down three desires/intentions in the ‘affirmative’, you are setting the stage for a night of subconscious programming and rewiring your brains thought patterns in favour of your goals and desires.
This does a great job of closing the book on the previous day, minimizing nagging thoughts, and also setting the stage for subconscious programming while you doze off into a deep sleep.
Step 5 - Meditate
As I’ve mentioned in many of my blogs, meditation is one of the best habits you can adopt in the modern landscape we live in of constant information, social media, and stress/anxiety-triggers.
To meditate do the following:
Remove yourself from all potential distractions/interruptions
Sit cross-legged, or sit upright in a chair
Set a timer for how long you want to meditate for (10-20 mins)
Close your eyes, focus on your breathing
When thoughts pop into your mind, don’t feed into them, acknowledge them, and re-focus on your breath/being present.
There are a handful of benefits to meditating. In the context of this article specifically; meditating does a great job of relaxing you, drowning out nagging thoughts, relieving stress, and keeping you in tune with your inner voice/purpose.
Meditation does a great job of preparing you for a deep, well-rested sleep due to its calming, euphoric benefits.
Step 6 - Read
Lastly, grab a great book - specifically one that is going to improve your life, whether it be health, wealth, love/relationships, or happiness related (whatever is most relevant to where you currently are and what your top priorities are).
These books are truly worth your focus, and have very high positive ROIs; when you compare the time you put into them with the rewards/benefits you get from them and how they improve your life.
Read a few pages, depending on how much time you have or how tired you are.
I typically aim to read at least 10-12 pages per night, and chip away it that way.
Reading great books is one of the best habits you can adopt. They’ll make you sharper, more intelligent, and able to understand things on a deeper level.
When you first start reading helpful books, it’ll almost feel as if your mind is coming out of a haze – as you continuously expand your mind in the areas that matter most.
Reading is very relaxing activity and it’ll definitely make you tired and ready to sleep. In doing so, you’re doing the final activity that will put you in position for a deep sleep, and you’re also expanding your mind favourably, just before your subconscious mind goes to work while you sleep.
Over time, this reading habit will put you leaps and bounds ahead in terms of knowledge, critical thinking ability, and making great decisions in your life.
The Bottom Line:
When you get in a cycle of morning and night routines – there’s no question about it that you’ll get into a flow-state of high productivity, focus, and progress towards the goals you’ve set for yourself.
It’s quite the powerful place to be, and one that is hard to compete with.
This night routine will mark one of the starting points in your path to greatness. I guarantee it.
My Challenge To You:
My challenge to you – write this 6 step night routine down on a piece of paper and put it by your bed-side.
Follow this for 2 weeks; and watch as your productivity, focus, sleep-quality and progress towards your goals skyrocket.
Now go get after it!