I spend an abnormal amount of time thinking about sleep. Beyond being one of my writing beats here at mbg, it's also just a personal passion of mine. (Getting under the covers after a long day is basically my love language.) I'm someone who needs a solid eight to nine hours a night to feel my best, and I'm always asking around for new ways to improve my existing sleep habits.
If there's one thing that the experts I have interviewed agree on, it's that if you want to get good sleep, a solid wind-down routine is essential.
I love the way that psychologist Shelby Harris, PsyD, DBSM, once explained it: The human body does not come with an on-off switch. We can't pack our days with work, commitments, and to-do's and then magically expect our brains to turn off the second we slip into bed. Most of us need a good 30 minutes to an hour each night to clear the mind and ease into a relaxed state before sleep.
After hearing time and time again that nighttime rituals are not just pleasant but actually essential, I've become more diligent about my own. To ensure that I actually leave enough time to unwind before bed, I've started setting a nighttime alarm to keep me on track and eating dinner on the early side when possible.
Then, in the hour leading up to bed, I'll enjoy some screen-free activities to give my mind a break: I'll wash up, write in my journal, and read a book. Then, when the time comes time to cap off my soothing nightly routine, I'll reach for one thing: mbg's dream mist.