How to sleep faster and better
Fall asleep faster and sleep more peacefully with these simple lifestyle tips. By Candice Flynn
The need for sleep is real. But there’s an even bigger need. A need to sleep fast!
You would love it if you fell asleep the moment your head hit the pillow, wouldn’t you? When you are feeling sleepy, you would want to fall asleep fast instead of constantly twisting and turning in your bed.
It can be done! There are certain tips and tricks you can try to sleep fast in five minutes. Incorporating these simple tips into your routine will help you quieten your body and mind, tame those racing thoughts, switch off for the day and get to sleep as soon as possible.
Here are some ways you can use to fall asleep in five minutes or less:
Breathing exercises for sleep
Breathing exercises are a great way to regulate heart rate, muscle tension, blood pressure and other aspects of relaxation.
Controlling your breath can help you get to sleep fast! As a consequence, your brain starts to feel sleepy and ready to switch off for the day. There are a couple of breathing exercises that you can try every night. They are 4-7-8 breathing, box breathing and another called belly breathing.
Here’s how to do the 4-7-8 breathing technique to fall asleep:
Step 1: Close your mouth and inhale through your nose while mentally counting till 4
Step 2: Hold your breath for 7 counts
Step 3: Exhale through our mouth while counting till 8
Step 4: Repeat the process for at least 4 times.
The technique will effectively slow your heart rate and increase oxygen in your bloodstream, and may even make you feel slightly lightheaded which contributes to the mild sedative-like effect.
Meditation is a proven way to fall asleep faster. It helps you log off for the day, reduce stress and allow your mind to relax. It’s a simple way to balance and allow yourself to get some good sleep.
Meditation has a lot of benefits and can even help insomnia and other sleep disorders. If you are starting with meditation, you should try out guided meditation. Here, meditation is performed as a response to guidance provided by a trained individual either in person or through recordings. Using guided meditation apps can help you clear your mind and help control those ever-racing thoughts and hence create the perfect state to get some sleep.
Body scans are another great way to release tension and to feel lighter and more relaxed.
To initiate a body scan, you have to lie down in a comfortable position and start focusing on the feet while taking deep breaths and gently moving attention from your toes to the head. Concentrate on each body part while you move up the body to ensure each area is not holding on to any tension. As you breathe out, visualise the tension easing away. This technique will ensure your body is well relaxed and comfortable.
No screen time at night
Stay away from TV and mobile phones late at night. Binge-watching Netflix or any content late at night stimulates your brain…and that doesn’t let your mind settle! The blue light screens can also keep you awake and alert. You end up processing what you’ve watched or seen on Instagram, keeping your mind wide awake. As a result, although your body is exhausted, the mind does not switch off but stays up and what follows is the tossing and turning and usual restlessness of being unable to get to sleep. By avoiding TV and watching content at night, you allow yourself to wind down for the night without worry and enjoy deep sleep.
One of the best ways to fall asleep fast under 10 minutes is to listen to calming music. This is because listening to music helps you relax, wind down and allows your brain to switch off. Try natural sounds too. Put on the sounds of the rain, the waves of the ocean or a soothing breeze. Some sounds have been proven to match the natural frequency preferred by the body and are known to help boost restful sleep and drift off.
Create a bedtime routine
A bedtime routine at night will help signal to your body and mind that it is time to sleep. It will help you switch off for the day, unwind and sleep fast in five minutes. This is because your body will already be ready to sleep after you finish your routine. The practices you can include in your routine might include reading a book, mindful brushing, light stretches and even guided meditation. These practices will help you feel sleepy and fall asleep faster.
However, these tips alone won’t help you sleep fast in five minutes. You need to follow a proper sleep routine, ideally sleep at the same time every day, eat the right foods and follow a good, healthy lifestyle to allow yourself the best opportunity to fall asleep fast.
Other tips that can help you sleep fast;
- Avoid caffeine or caffeine-infused drinks at least six hours before bedtime.
- Maintain a cool room that is preferably quiet and dark.
- Try humming to yourself as a way to keep distractions away.
- Try not to skip dinner; it is harder to get sleep on an empty stomach.