6 Mind-Soothers to Get Yourself to Bed
In partnership with our friends at Gravity
We know well enough what to take out of our evening routines for easier, more restful sleep: blue light, our phones, and caffeine (the latter at least seven hours before bed). But what we’re most interested in right now are things we can add to help us both ease into slumber and replace habits that may be less conducive to waking up feeling rested.
From weighted blankets to sound baths, we’ve got options for bedtime—and the happy truth is: They’re not just sleep support but pleasures all their own.
WORTH THE WEIGHT
Weighted blankets are a magic pill for bedtime: Stick us under one of these and suddenly, by some fifteen-pound miracle, we’ve actually gotten that eight hours we’re always talking about. They’re probably so effective because they feel like a really good hug or like being tucked in by your mom. But admittedly, when outside temperatures are on the rise, a very heavy blanket can be a sweaty experience. That’s why we like the new cooling blankets from Gravity. They’re designed with a breathable duvet to wick away moisture and keep you chill from p.m. to a.m. We’ll admit we’ve grown attached to ours—so much so, we’ve found ways to keep our blankets with us after our alarms go off. In for a slow, snoozy morning? Afternoon power nap? A period of recovery after finishing Normal People? It’s even better with a Gravity blanket on top of you.Gravity Cooling Blanket, Gravity Blankets, $210
A very nice bedtime ritual: gratitude journaling. We’re not saying you have to pour yourself into your journal for five, ten, or fifteen minutes. Try this instead: Open it up, write down the date and one thing that made you feel lucky and good today, and close it. It might not seem like much, but this simplified gratitude practice draws any day (even one that was definitely not a good day) to a satisfying close. It makes a great foundation for sleep or just for the beginning of a quiet night in. And while this isn’t the ultimate point, it’s also our favorite kind of journal to look back on: tiny daily highlights make a joyful snapshot of a well-lived life.An Organised Life Gratitude Lined Notebook, goop, $16
When we turned to Reiki master and intuitive guide Jasmin Harsono for tips on calm, restful nights, she clued us in to the power of sound meditation. It has something to do with aligning chakras and other energy stuff (you can read more about that here, in our Q&A with Harsono on sound and sleep), and the results speak for themselves: In our experience, nighttime sound meditations have left us feeling effortlessly mellow and ready to get under the covers. We had Harsono record one of her signature sound sessions. While it isn’t our first sound bath, it’s definitely one of our favorites. (And we especially like that we can tune in whenever we like on the goop YouTube channel.)
It’s not revolutionary to suggest reading to wind down before bed. But it is important to note that the book you pick matters: You’ll want something exciting enough that you do actually pick it up but not so enthralling you can’t put it down. (The end game, after all, is to eventually get some sleep.) That’s why we try to go for short stories, preferably lighthearted ones, which are great for put-down-ability. Recently, we got really into Someone Who Will Love You in All Your Damaged Glory. It’s a collection of stories about love and relationships written by Raphael Bob-Waksberg, the creator of BoJack Horseman. Each of them has a silly and unexpected twist. And despite all of the absurdities, this book has raw and honest things to say about love.Someone Who Will Love You in All Your Damaged Glory: Stories by Raphael Bob-Waksberg, Bookshop, $24
PLAYING IT SAFE
Some say the hours before bed should be spent weaning off tech. Often, the same people will say: meditate. But what if you rely on the former to do the latter? For those who like to have a little help getting into their mindfulness and meditation practice, here’s an analog option: Coloring books from The Coloring Method are designed with traditional Yogic and Buddhist practices in mind, and everything you need (besides your coloring utensil) is included in the pages of each book. This one, I Am Safe, teaches single-point concentration. In each exercise, you fill in a series of concentric circles, sink into the power of the breath, really feel the physical sensations of moving your pen or pencil, and silently repeat a mantra of safety and self-security. As you progress through the book, there are more and more circles to fill in, which stretches the limits of your concentration and settles you into the present moment.The Coloring Method I Am Safe Coloring Book, goop, $16
Sometimes your bed is expertly nested, your bedtime book is the perfect pick, and your night’s meditations are ethereal…but still you’re missing something. It’s a warm cup in your hands. While we’re in the habit of reaching for various teas and tonics, we often opt for this saffron latte. It’s made with a simple list of ingredients: organic saffron—which feels very fancy and indulgent—plus cardamom, coconut milk powder, and coconut water powder. It’s warming, savory, a little bit sweet, and easy and quick to make: Simply heat up a mug of your favorite plant-based milk and stir in a big spoonful. (A milk frother or matcha whisk does wonders, if you have one.)The Fullest Saffron Latte, goop, $64
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