HOW TO CREATE A SIMPLE EVENING ROUTINE
An evening routine can get you prepared for tomorrow and calm you down ready for the night, no matter what the day has thrown at you! Check out this post on how to create a simple evening routine that supports you.
THE BENEFITS OF AN EVENING ROUTINE
Do you ever have one of those days when you’re on the go and haven’t had time to catch your breath? Even when we try to manage our time and make life as easy as possible, there are still crazy, chaotic days. Getting to the end of a day like that can be a relief!
Even on normal days, I’m still quite pleased when I’ve done all my jobs, the kids are in bed and I can find a little bit of time for looking after myself. I can:
- Unwind and relax from being on the go and do something just for me!
- Use the time to calm down and prepare myself physically and mentally for bedtime.
- Spend a few minutes each evening doing some jobs for the morning.
It means that I’m not rushing so much in the morning, my mornings are less stressful and I have time on my hands in case, for example, I sleep through the alarm or one of the kids is ill.
Creating a simple evening routine that I follow daily has so many benefits and, together with a simple morning routine, acts as a framework to book-end my day.
HOW TO ESTABLISH A SIMPLE EVENING ROUTINE
Your evening routine doesn’t have to be complicated. It just needs to support you well. In this instance, that means:
- Saving you time in the morning by doing some of tomorrow morning’s jobs today
- Re-setting your home and putting your home to bed like you do yourself!
- Helping calm your body and mind
- Preparing you for sleep to recharge your batteries
Before we look at some simple evening routine ideas, here are 3 little tips to help you put your own simple evening routine in place:
1. Start slowly
Below I’ve given you 25 ideas to include in your own evening routine. You don’t need to do them all, just choose the ones which you feel will support you best.
When we’re creating new routines, sometimes it’s helpful to build on little daily habits that we already have in place. This process is called habit-stacking from the book Habit Stacking: 97 Small Life Changes That Take Five Minutes Or Less by S. J. Scott. To learn more about how it works take a look at this article from jamesclear.com.
3. Create a plan
Make the most of your time by having a plan. The plan can be flexible and can be different for the weekdays and the weekends.
Be clear on what you’d like to get done in the evening and perhaps plan it during the day. Don’t waste your precious evening hours wondering what to do!
IDEAS FOR A SIMPLE EVENING ROUTINE
Here are some ideas for your evening routine. Pick and choose what might work best for you. I’m sure there are plenty of others that you can think of!
- Make sure the car has fuel in it for the school run or to get to work!
- Do you know where your keys are so you’re not frantically searching for them in the morning?
- Make/prep all tomorrow’s lunches and keep them in the fridge or freezer to take out first thing in the morning
- Wipe down all the surfaces and do a quick whip round the house putting things back into their correct places
- Wash the dishes from dinner or load and switch on the dishwasher to finish before bedtime
- Give the house a quick hoover for when you come down in the morning. If the floor looks clean it makes everything else look cleaner!
- Fold and put away any laundry that you’ve washed that day
- Get the coffee machine on standby so it’s ready for the morning when you most need it!
- Put out the breakfast cereals and bowls on the table to save time in the morning
- Check through school bags for any letters/permission slips. Fill them out and put them safely back in the bags
- Make sure the school bags are completely ready for the morning including swimming and PE kits etc as necessary
- Write a To Do list for the things you need to do tomorrow. Keep it simple and strategic.
- Lay out clothes for you and your children to put on tomorrow. Declutter your clothes so it’s easier to choose.
- Have a shower and wash your hair to save time in the morning
- Get the kids to tidy up their bedroom and put their toys away
- Bath the kids, make sure their teeth are brushed, read them a story and anything else that is an important part of the evening routine for you and your kids
- Lay out your gym stuff if you plan to do a workout when you wake up
- Charge your toothbrush overnight
- Make sure your alarm is set
- Plan to factor in a bit of ‘you time’ – even if it’s not very long – so that you can do something for yourself like read a chapter of a book, listen to a podcast, go for a walk
- Don’t be tempted to keep your phone by your bed (apart from if you use it as an alarm clock) and check your emails last thing at night. They can wait until morning
- Make sure your bedside table only has the things on it that you need for the night
- Write down in your diary five things that you are grateful for that day
- Keep a notebook by your bed so that if you remember something during the night then you can write it down instead of forgetting it by morning
- Relax before bed with a bath, read a book, light a candle. Read this article from the Sleep Foundation on tips for healthy sleeping.
These are just some ideas for what to include in your evening routine. It will look different for everyone so pick and choose what supports you the most.
Let me know in the comments if there’s anything else you do which you find helps!
RESOURCES FOR INTENTIONAL LIVING
If you’d like to explore intentional living and how to get the most out of your life, here are some resources which you might find helpful: