Here's the *ultimate* before-bed routine to boost rest and wellness
Feeling sluggish, irritated and just overall, well, blah? Your sleep routine is the *first* place to look. Sleep is everything, TBH, and it's especially important for teens. That's why we talked to Lindsay Kluge, MS, CNS, LDN and Lead US herbalist at Pukka and got *all* the deets on wellness, sleep and how to incorporate more inner peace in your everyday schedule.
Why is sleep *so* important?
LK: Sleep is incredibly important for our overall state of health and well-being. It's the body's rest and repair time. During the stages of restful sleep, our body repairs physically and mentally. Our nervous system has a chance to relax, our mind can consciously turn off, our digestion can relax a bit, our stress washes away and our muscle and joints get a reprieve. Physically, mentally and emotionally, sleep is like wellness gold.
For teens and young adults, your body and mind are still developing. Getting good quality—and quantity—of sleep enhances this development so that you can function at your best. You can't "make up" sleep at a later point. It's so important to commit to quality sleep every night as much as possible. You deserve restful, rejuvenating sleep with deep dreams every night.
How can teen girls incorporate more wellness into daily life?
LK: Think about what feeling "well" or "healthy" means to you. It may mean feeling active and energized, or emotionally stable and calm, or feeling loved and seen or feeling like every part of your body is functioning well. Wellness practices will enhance those areas when you focus time and attention toward giving your body what it needs. Wellness is so much more than how you look on the outside. It's also how you feel on the inside. Incorporating wellness into your daily life means feeding your mind, body and soul in a way that will make you individually feel your best.
First, decide what makes you feel your best inside and out. Then devote time to that [activity] every day—even if it's just 20 minutes. This could be incorporating more movement and exercise in your day, playing music, practicing mindfulness meditation or yoga, spending time in nature, making art, enjoying a tea ritual and journaling before bed, working on intentionally communicating with those around you, playing with your dog or learning the art of cooking nourishing meals to enjoy for yourself one or two days a week. It's completely up to you, as long as your wellness practice brings you empowerment and joy.
What's your night routine?
LK: First, I shut off *all* devices and screens at least an hour before bed. Sleep is really the most personal time we have. We don't need to be available and distracted by the hundreds of things [that] take up our attention during the day. I leave my phone downstairs and keep electronics out of my room. An hour before I want to fall asleep, I wash my face with warm water and an oil cleanser, followed by a gentle spritz of lavender hydrosol. I put on my pajamas and make a cup of herbal tea—chamomile is my favorite. I'll read for an hour, sipping my tea as I get lost in a book. I make sure to dim the lights in my room as much as possible to signal to my body it's time to wind down and relax. And I keep my sleeping space extra cozy with my favorite books, a salt lamp (love these!) and super comfy flannel sheets when it's cold. I just totally nest into my bed. When I turn the salt lamp off and settle in, I take three deep, intentional breaths, offer gratitude for the day and sink into dreams.
Take inventory of your own sleeping space. Does it make you feel safe, cozy and calm? What small changes can you make to improve your own night routine? Start with one small thing and stick with it for a week.
One wellness practice Lindsay definitely recommends? Drinking tea. "Herbal tea for sleep is especially effective," she explains. "Classic herbs like chamomile, valerian, passionflower, linden and lavender are all used in some way to help you fall asleep." You can check out Pukka's Night Time Tea for a soothing, calming and delish addition to your nighttime routine.
Tag us in your sooo calming bedroom pics on Insta @girlslifemag!