Effective Ways to Fall Asleep in 10, 60 and 120 Seconds

As far as you know healthy sleep is extremely important. It assists in making your body and brain function properly. A lot of people do not have problems with falling asleep but there are also people who experience serious difficulties with falling and staying asleep through the night. Lack of sleep or poor sleep can negatively affect many parts of the body and brain including memory, mood, learning, emotions and a number of biological functions. 

A simple act of trying too hard to fall asleep can lead to a cycle of anxious, nerve-wracking energy that will keep your mind awake. Primary care physicians state that if your mind cannot sleep, it makes it really difficult for your body to follow. It is also a well-known fact that morning headaches are generally caused by a lack of sleep. In addition to that, people with sleep disorders are 2 to 8 times more prone to experiencing morning headaches than the ones that do not have these conditions, according to primary care physicians. If you find it extremely difficult to fall asleep, you are not alone. However, there are a number of scientific tricks that will help to fall asleep faster and they are as follows. 

Falling asleep in 10 seconds 

It normally takes around a magic spell to fall asleep this quickly. It might sound undoable but with practice, you can eventually fall asleep in 10 seconds. This method is called a military method, which was reported by Sharon Ackerman, the United States Navy Pre-Flight School. He created a technique that helps pilots fall asleep in 2 minutes or less. Ackerman states that it normally takes 6 weeks of practice before the technique works. This method also works even after drinking coffee or if there is a noise in the background. This approach even works for people who need to sleep while standing. To be more specific, this method works in the following way: 

  1. You should first relax your face including muscles inside your mouth 

  2. You need to make sure to drop the shoulder in order to release tension and let your hands drop to the side of the body 

  3. Exhale while relaxing your chest 

  4. Relax your legs, calves, and thighs 

  5. Clear your mind for 10 seconds by thinking of a relaxing scene 

  6. If the previous step does not work out for you, try saying “do not think” over and over for 10 seconds 

  7. Within 10 seconds you should fall asleep 

If the aforementioned does not work for you will need to work more on breathing and muscle relations, which have scientific evidence that they actually work. It is also worth mentioning that conditions such as ADHD or anxiety might interfere with the effectiveness of this method. 

Falling asleep in 60 seconds 

There are methods that could help you to fall asleep in 60 seconds. Both approaches focus on your muscles and breath and will eventually help you take the mind off. These methods might take up to two minutes to work. The first method, which involves your breath is called 4-7-8 breathing. It mixes together the powers of meditation and visualization and becomes more effective with proper practice. However, you need to keep in mind that if you experience any respiratory condition, you should check with your primary care physician before making use of this technique. 4-7-8 breathing method works in the following way: 

  1. Make a whooshing sound as you exhale through your mouth 

  2. Close your lips and inhale silently through your nose and count to four 

  3. Hold your breath for 7 seconds 

  4. Exhale with a whoosh sound for 8 seconds

  5. Complete the cycle for four full breaths and allow your body to sleep if you feel that relaxation comes earlier than expected  

Another method that can be utilized involves your muscles and is called PMR. It stands for progressive muscle relaxation or deep muscle relaxation. The main idea of this approach is to tense and not strain the muscles and relax in order to release the tension. It works in the following way: 

  1. Raise the eyebrows for 5 seconds and tighten your forehead muscles

  2. Relax the muscles immediately and experience the tension drop and wait for 10 seconds 

  3. In order to create tension in your cheeks, you should smile widely and hold it for 5 seconds 

  4. Take a 10 seconds pause and squint with eyes shut, hold for 5 seconds and relax 

  5. Tale a 10 seconds pause and tilt your head slightly back and hold it for another 5 seconds

  6. Relax the neck skins back into the pillow and pause for 10 seconds 

  7. Move down the rest of the body and let your body fall asleep even if you do not finish tensing and relaxing the rest of the body 

Falling asleep in 120 seconds 

If the aforementioned techniques do not work for you, there could be an underlying blockage that needs to be taken out. The first option is to tell yourself to stay awake. It might sound ridiculous but telling yourself to stay awake might be a good way to fall asleep, according to primary care physicians. It should be also mentioned that trying to sleep can increase performance anxiety, especially those with insomnia. According to a recent study, people who practiced paradoxical intention fell asleep faster than those who did not. Thus, if it is extremely stressful for you to fall asleep, the aforementioned method can be more effective than the traditional breaching approach. 

Another possible approach is visualizing a calm place. In case counting stimulates your brain you should try engaging in imagination. A lot of successful entrepreneurs say that visualizing is something that can make it real. It might be possible that the same works with sleep too.  A study, conducted by the University of Oxford shows that people who were involved in imagery distractions fell asleep faster than those who had general or no distractions. As an example, you can imagine a waterfall, rushing water, the sounds of echoing or the scent of damp moss. The main focus should be on letting this image take up space in your brain and prevent re-engaging in thoughts, concerns, and worries. 

If you have already tried all the aforementioned techniques and still find it difficult to fall asleep in 2 minutes or less it might be the case that you have an underlying health condition. If you experience problems with falling asleep or staying asleep for more than a week, it is recommended to get in contact with your primary care physician. He/she will be able to determine the cause of the problem and find applicable treatment methods. As was mentioned earlier, a lack or shortage of sleep might lead to severe headaches and have a negative impact on your productivity. Therefore, do not hesitate to contact your doctor as it might be also the case that you are exposed to a number of sleep disorders such as: 

  1. Obstructive sleep apnea: a condition where there is a blockage in the upper airways 

  2. Restless legs syndrome: a condition that causes uncomfortable sensations in legs including aching or tingling 

  3. Delayed sleep phase disorder: a condition that causes a delay in the 24-hour cycle of sleep

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31 Mar 2020

By Amelia Grant