How to de-stress before bedtime

I've always been a light sleeper, and sometimes before a big deadline I get anxiety before bed and I lie awake for hours. 

Normally I have no problem falling asleep naturally at an acceptable hour, but sometimes before an important meeting or deadline I have this unsettling feeling in my chest and it's hard to make it go away, no matter how hard I try to "relax." 

I noticed that this happens too sometimes when I work till 1 or 2 am. Even after I finish the work that needs to be done for the night, I'm still antsy at the end of it all. 

TLDR: How to compartmentalize and de-stress before sleeping? Currently wasting too many hours anxious / awake. 

Comments (58)

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Jan 10, 2022 - 7:20pm

Weed's the best. Can also try to meditate, read for 15-20 instead of scrolling on your phone, meditate with lights off / candles on

  • Analyst 2 in IB - Gen
Jan 10, 2022 - 7:25pm

Always make a point to meditate everyday, found it to be super helpful in calming the mind

  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Jan 10, 2022 - 7:37pm

Unless it's been an extremely long day, I'll always try to have a herbal tea, read (ideally fiction but anything works as long as it's not on a screen), and use a guided meditation app like Headspace

Highly recommend

  • Intern in IB - Gen
Jan 10, 2022 - 7:57pm

L-theanine during the day helps with stress. I take it before interviews, big presentations. I've also found it's nice when I'm sleep deprived. I also like to go for a ~30 min walk in the evening without music or anything.

Bed time: drink chamomile tea + glycine, take ZMA. Do this ~30 min before bed. This combo will put you into a deep sleep and give you some vivid dreams. The Magnesium is good for stress/anxiety too. I think weed messes with your REM cycle and alcohol definitely does so save those for the weekend.

Jan 10, 2022 - 8:09pm

Go to the gym and stretch / work out.  Set your alarm and plug your phone in to charge for the night and set it to do not disturb.  Take an evening shower 45-60 minutes before bed.  Keep all the lights in your apartment very low / off.  Make a chamomile tea and read a book.  No screens, music, TV, etc. after the shower if you can avoid it.

Jan 12, 2022 - 2:30pm

I was having the same issue (i.e. reading a book is much better before bed, but have to keep the light on in your room, then when you're about to go to sleep you have to get out of bed, turn it off - and now you can't sleep again).

Found this light, it's awesome. The amber tone is super relaxing, it clips directly onto your book and has a long battery life. Battery charges with a wall outlet. Highly recommend.…

  • 3
  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Jan 10, 2022 - 9:32pm

kiss my gf and chat with her until we are sleepy 

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
Jan 11, 2022 - 3:26pm

good to know! Have you ever taken melatonin before? Curious to see how they differ

  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Jan 11, 2022 - 4:04pm

Yes I've taken melatonin before, but my problem with melatonin is that it makes me drowsy into the next day where as the magnesium doesn't. The one I especially like is called ionic fizz magnesium plus. I drink it an hour before bed and it just naturally winds me down.

Jan 17, 2022 - 5:31pm

The thing with taking melatonin is that it artificially induced a chang to your circadian rhythm. Not a bad thing if you need to adjust your biological clock, but melatonin by itself doesn't necessarily help you fall asleep, only induces a single to your brain that it's time to wind down and go to bed. Would recommend Mathew Walker's "Why We Sleep" to get a holistic view on how to build sleep habits. Helped me a lot 

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Jan 11, 2022 - 10:19pm

Could taking melatonin pills become a potential issue later on? Especially if u almost start relying on them heavily just to sleep?

  • Analyst 1 in Consulting
Jan 11, 2022 - 10:49pm

Your body naturally produces it so I wouldn't say it's harmful but obviously too much of something isn't great either. As someone mentioned above, I'm usually still groggy into the morning if I take anything more than 5mg so I stick to 2.5/5mg the night before exams/big days. If someone is relying on something to fall asleep there's probably a bigger issue at hand. 

Jan 12, 2022 - 6:32am

I don't really care about not using electronics before bed as personally it hasn't really impacted my sleep. That being said, watch/read something you find entertaining or talk to family/friends on the phone. Basically something which makes you happy and raises endorphins through laughter or something of the like.

  • 1
Jan 12, 2022 - 6:39am

Am I the only one who goes to the gym after work but then is crazy horny after the gym?

Never discuss with idiots, first they drag you at their level, then they beat you with experience.

Jan 13, 2022 - 10:21am

Lmao the difference between 1st year and 2nd years is appalling

Who cares about deadlines or big meetings, you have a million of them. Why stress over one? 

At some point you'll get so used to meetings and deliverables it won't keep you up (or you'll quit before then)

Jan 13, 2022 - 6:55pm

I usually watch an hour or so of Netflix/Youtube at the end of the day if I can. Just to fully remove myself from the work of the day and give myself something to look forward as a reward for a long day of work. It eats into my sleeping time, but I'm going to be exhausted either way and I can drown that in coffee. No amount of coffee will help give you that mental break, so I find the tradeoff worthwhile.

  • VP in PE - LBOs
Jan 16, 2022 - 4:50am

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  • VP in PE - LBOs
Jan 16, 2022 - 5:12am

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