Self Love

A daily sleep routine to wind down enough to *actually* sleep

If you’ve read “Read this if you’re stressed about sleep” then you’ve heard about my struggles and anxiety around sleep. If you haven’t read it, let’s just say it got to the point where I hired a sleep coach. It turned out that my daily sleep routine was completely off. It’s taken a while for me […]

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If you’ve read “Read this if you’re stressed about sleep” then you’ve heard about my struggles and anxiety around sleep. If you haven’t read it, let’s just say it got to the point where I hired a sleep coach. It turned out that my daily sleep routine was completely off.

It’s taken a while for me to become a champion sleeper, but I have to say that if you’re patient and incorporate a good nightly routine as part of your self care, it IS possible to experience restorative sleep every night and recharge yourself for the day ahead.

Here are my favorite wind down tips that attune your mind, body and soul to a night of restful sleep. 

1. Uncover your favorite thing to start your daily sleep routine

This one needs a couple of days to get right, but it’s oh-so-worth-it and the process can be fun. The key here is to discover what you like, and be consistent once you’ve found it.

My ritual has been a cup of herbal tea 30-45 minutes before I go to bed. I love going to my local tea shop and selecting new herbal blends to try. If you want to be practical about it, you can pick out a blend that specifically mentions that it’s good for sleep. Chamomile is a great option.

It only took a week until my body automatically calmed-down when I brewed my cup of tea because I established consistency. I brew it every day at the exact same time, which trained my nervous system to react the way I want it to. Consciously allowing myself the time to enjoy every single sip of tea brings me into the present moment. I use this presence to shower peace into my heart, soul and body. My tea time gives me the space to recap my day, working out the formative moments and lessons so that I don’t ruminate on them in bed later.

Instead of a cup of tea you can also opt for a short walk outside or any other ritual that makes you feel calm and centered. It doesn’t matter what it is, just keep it consistent. Notice how I keep repeating that? Good.

2 – Go dark

The darker your bedroom is, the easier it is for your body to produce melatonin- the hormone that regulates our sleep. Yes, this means no more Netflix in bed, sorry! Make your bedroom a dark, luxurious cave.

3 – Cool it down

Experts say that 64,4° Fahrenheit (18° Celsius) is the best temperature to facilitate deep and restorative sleep. I personally like it even cooler so that I can really snuggle up in my blanket. Try out which temperature works best for you, making adjustments to your room can dramatically change things around!

4 – Freshen up

Oxygen helps to detox the body, so sleep with your window open as much as you can. If opening the window is no practical option, vent your bedroom right before sleep to get as much fresh air into the room as possible. Constant noise during nights will take away the advantage of fresh air- if you live near a highway or on a busy street, try keeping your bedroom door open at night and use a fan to aerate your space.

5 – Nature’s Lullaby as daily sleep routine support

I love it when I lay in my bed, window open and I hear the rain drops fall down on the earth outside. This is the best lullaby for me. As little children, we were used to falling asleep to rhythmic lullabies sung by our parents or recorded on tape. It’s no different as an adult! Even as we grow out of this child-song, the soothing sounds of nature provide us with a lifelong lullaby. There are a lot of apps on the market that provide soundscapes to help you to fall asleep. It’s so much fun to try them out and explore which works best for you. Light raindrops are my favorite, they gently let me slide over into the world of dreams and wonders. 

These tips combined will create the perfect wind-down routine to ease you into sleep. But, it’s worth mentioning that NONE of this will work if you don’t pay attention to this one thing…

The absolute MUST for good sleep and a daily sleep routine that works?

6- Watch your caffeine intake!

This one is a non-negotiable for me. No more coffee after 3pm. Otherwise my brain is off to some dance party the rest of me wasn’t invited to. 

I know that some of you will instantly say they’re so used to caffeine that it doesn’t harm their sleep anymore. Sorry my dear, your nervous system and brain are still affected. It might feel like you’re used to the caffeine, and maybe you can even still fall asleep, but it’s been proven that caffeine lightens sleep cycles. Which means that you can fall asleep and even stay asleep… but your sleep will not enter the REM state designed to restore your body. 

It’s so easy to get used to your daily dose (or overdose) of caffeine that you can’t imagine life without it. That’s the surest sign that it’s time to cut back (or even take a break), which gives your body the chance to adjust to your natural rhythm again. 

If you’re reading this: reduce your intake until you’re clean of coffee after 3pm and witness how much better you feel!

As with anything in life, remember to have patience with yourself as you adjust to this wind down practice. 

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I'm Nadja, your new self-love friend.

As a recovered people-pleaser, I know how frustrated you feel when you care for everyone else but yourself. I've learned to set healthy boundaries and prioritize myself to create the life I want to live (not one where I comply with other people's guidelines). I'll show you exactly how to build YOUR life - the way you want to live it (and yes, boundaries play a huge role in that!) Start living unapologetically and totally YOU.

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