This Simple Trick Can Put You To Sleep Fast!
Do you ever have those nights where your mind is racing and you just can’t fall asleep? You put on music, read a book, tell yourself to calm down, nothing seems to work. Stress and anxiety has a way to keep our minds occupied, which leads to restless nights and issues with falling asleep. So how does one fall asleep when you’ve exhausted all of your known options?
In the following article, Alina Gonzalez explains this very simple, but effective technique you can use to fall asleep quickly. You will be amazed by how something so simple can be so useful.
Read the article below and put an end to restless nights once and for all!
By Aliana Gonzalez
Sleepless and Stressed
It was the week before my best friend’s wedding, and my anxiety (nerves, plus excitement) had reached epic levels.
After day three of lying awake until the wee hours of the night, I sheepishly admitted to her that I was too nervous to fall asleep, and she—the bride, who was sleeping like a baby the week before her own wedding—told me I needed to try the “4-7-8” breathing trick.
How It Works
When you feel stressed or anxious, adrenaline courses through your veins, your heart beats at a rapid rate, and your breathing becomes quick and shallow. To me, the effect of the breathing technique feels almost like a sedative drug, because in order to hold your breath for seven seconds and then to exhale for eight—when your breath is so shallow and short—your body is forced to slow your heart rate. It has no choice. Holding your breath, and then slowly, deliberately exhaling for eight seconds, causes a chain reaction.
When you first start, you’ll be desperate to just take in another breath, or you’ll want to speed up your counting, but if you stick to the numbers (or at least try to), and don’t take any breaks (in other words, consecutively repeat the 4-7-8 without resuming regular breathing), you can literally feel your heart rate slow down, your mind get quieter, and your whole body physically relax. It washes over you like a calming, relaxing drug. I can never remember getting past the first set of 4-7-8.
Now to the more technical details: People who are stressed or anxious are actually chronically under-breathing, because stressed people breathe shortly and shallowly, and often even unconsciously hold their breath. By extending your inhale to a count of four, you are forcing yourself to take in more oxygen, allowing the oxygen to affect your bloodstream by holding your breath for seven seconds, and then emitting carbon dioxide from your lungs by exhaling steadily for eight seconds. It will instantly relax your heart, mind, and overall central nervous system because you are controlling the breath versus continuing to breathe short, shallow gasps of air.
How It Can Work for You
Mindful breathing practices have been a part of yoga and Eastern wellness modalities for centuries but aren’t as popular in Western culture. The most well-known champion of the 4-7-8 breathing technique in the U.S., who is somewhat responsible for the prevalence that the technique does have amongst integrative medicine practitioners, yogis, and those in search of stress reduction and overall relaxation, is Harvard-educated Dr. Andrew Weil.
So there you have it. Do this simple breathing technique and start sleeping better tonight!
To your health and wellness!
For the original article from byrdie click here.