Insomnia – or not being able to fall asleep – is something pretty much everybody has to deal with at some point in their lives. But apparently the answer to getting some shut eye is breathing. And here I was not breathing.
Dr. Andrew Weil is a Harvard trained doctor and reckons that falling asleep is actually pretty simple, and can be done with an easy breathing technique.
Called the 4-7-8 technique or ‘Relaxing Breath’, Dr. Weil thinks it’s the best way to drop off:
Breathing strongly influences physiology and thought processes, including moods. By simply focusing your attention on your breathing and without doing anything to change it, you can move in the direction of relaxation.
1.Close your mouth and inhale quietly through your nose to a mental count of four.
2.Hold your breath for a count of seven.
3.Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound to a count of eight.
4.This is one breath. Now inhale again and repeat the cycle three more times for a total of four breaths.
Apparently, holding your breath for eight seconds is the most crucial part of the exercise, because by holding air in your lungs, you oxygenate your blood which calms the body. Yeah, science bitch!
It takes practice to perfect the technique and if you’re looking for a speedy nap, you ought to be trying twice a day for at least two months before you’ve got it down. Just try not to accidentally use the technique at school/ work/ on the train/ operating heavy machinery.