Nowadays, sleep is a luxury. People miss falling asleep like a baby before they turned into adults or life happened for them. A majority of youth are suffering from sleep disorders and searching for answers on how to sleep quickly. It is indeed concerning, how people take sleep for granted when a good nap is all you need to start fresh and happy the next day.
Things to know before we jump on how to fall asleep faster
Everything you do throughout the day is governed by your body’s energy levels. Now, these levels can be affected by many factors with the most important being your sleep. Many people don’t know how to sleep well and what are the benefits of proper nap time. Whether you are a light sleeper, a heavy sleeper, an insomniac, no matter what they tell you, all these sleep disorders eventually lead to you being stressed, depressed and non-productive. Don’t take your nap time lightly, it is important you learn how to sleep faster without using any tools or pills. But first, you need to know this.
- A person can live without both water and food, but cannot live without sleep for 11 consecutive days.
- As recommended by the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the average sleep time for adults between ages 18 and 60 should be at least 7 hours.
- Sleeping 60-90 minutes more every night makes you healthy and happier.
- The healthiest position to sleep is on the back, but studies tell 41% of adults sleep in the fetal position while only 8% sleep on their back.
- It takes around 10-15 minutes to fall asleep, but if you doze off within a few minutes, it indicates you are sleep deprived.
- Harvard School of Public Health reports that lack of sleep in adults leads to 3-5% of obesity.
This information comes in handy when you are trying to seek answers for how to sleep peacefully and what you need to keep in mind for your good sleep checklist.
Best ways to fall asleep instantly that actually work
Although there are plenty of devices and medications in the market to help you sleep quickly, how long can you depend on these unconventional methods? The sooner you come up with natural ways and remedies to overcome your sleep order, the better. These four natural, easy and reliable ways will guide you towards how to sleep instantly without using any pills or devices. You’ll definitely sleep like a baby if you can make some space for these practices in your schedule. Let’s get on to them quickly, before you lose interest.
#1. Steal enough nap time from your schedule
Mostly, people get bored listening to the mere word, schedule. It doesn’t have to be a typical chart or an hourly checklist. What schedule here means is don’t leave anything for the next day, it’ll only add to your anxiety. This anxiety generated by a not-so-oriented lifestyle definitely affects your sleep.
What you need to do:
- Start your day with a fresh mood, leaving yesterday’s things in the past.
- Don’t skip your breakfast or morning snack, after all, that is what will boost you for the day.
- A nice shower goes a long way when it comes to proper sleep.
- Assign yourself tasks to keep you busy throughout the day, it will trigger your brain into thinking you worked hard and need rest.
When you have done all of that, you will get your sleep schedule on track, one of the best ways to overcome your sleep disorders using natural remedies. Reserve a minimum of 7-8 hours for your sleep, it creates a balance for the internal clock of your body. Yes, the circadian rhythm, a regulatory system of your body into motion. It acts like an internal clock that helps you fall asleep at night and wake up in the morning easily. Also, feel free to get dizzy or comfortable in the evening so your body is ready to rest in the next few hours.
- A proper schedule keeps you productive and focused.
- It keeps you from procrastinating or overthinking about incomplete things at night.
- Completion of all tasks in time leaves more room for required sleep hours
#2. Give meditation a try
Never underestimate meditation and its powers. For those who practice meditation daily, it has proven life-changing, in a good way though.
What you need to do:
- Discard all bad thoughts beforehand, like they never existed. You need to be in the present moment.
- Sit with your legs crossed, core tight, spine straight, and shoulders relaxed.
- Close your eyes, breathe-in and breathe-out.
- Count your breath at every step, 1-inhale 2-exhale, 3-inhale, 4-exchale. This has two benefits, you don’t falter in between breathing cycles, and it keeps you from distraction.
Meditation is the form of yoga and the ultimate answer to the most asked question: how to fall asleep quickly when you are stressed or depressed.
Therefore, spare some time in your day for meditation. For beginners, 20 minutes would work just right. Though you can meditate anytime, anywhere you feel like. You’ll see maximum benefits in the early morning and before sleeping. Wear comfortable clothes that are not too tight or suffocating. You can even lie down if meditating before bedtime, only focus on your breathing and wipe off all other thoughts.
In short, it is never too late to start meditation. You will never find a person who has had any side effects due to meditation. Pretty cool, isn’t it?
- It is the best known healthy practice to reduce all forms of depression, stress, anxiety, and overthinking at nights.
- It unhinges you from the outside world, activating your inner state of peace, and relaxes your mind for a peaceful sleep.
- Irrespective of age, disorders like sleep deprivation, excess nap time, and insomnia all can be treated.
#3. Listen to music to calm you down
You know what they say, music soothes the soul. So, let’s take some help from music to combat our sleep issues.
Things you need:
- A nice squishy pillow
- A soft surface to lie down
- An iPod or phone to play music
- Earphones with soft earbuds on low volume
Besides meditation, music is the second best natural remedy to help you sleep faster. A rather cheap or say absolutely free medical aid, because who doesn’t have access to music these days. The last resort is to sing yourself. Any form of music can help you sleep faster, but don’t listen to loud music, it might backfire. Try folk, classical or jazz. Why is music your answer to how to sleep faster without any sleep aids? Read about its benefits here.
- It works just like a lullaby to make a kid fall asleep, so get ready to sleep like a baby.
- It targets the parasympathetic nervous system of your body.
- It tends to slow down your heart rate and breathing, lower blood pressure and help the muscles relax.
- Light or slow music triggers your brain to enhance the easy transition of sleep.
#4. Drop your phone on purpose, before you drop it on your face again
Your mobile phone might be the best thing in your life. You resort back to it every 5 minutes to stay connected, informed and interested. However, it is also responsible for tampering with your sleep hours.
Things you need to do:
- Cut down on your phone usage during the night.
- Don’t charge it if the battery is drained. A charged cell phone only gives you the reason to stay awake.
- Put it on airplane mode and lock it in a drawer closer to you. So you don’t feel you can’t reach out to it when needed.
- Replace this usage time with other physical activity that makes you think it is time to sleep. Like, get your blanket, fill up and bring your night water jar, or check all the doors before going to bed.
Now, why should you not use your phone during bed time? The blue light interferes with the production of melatonin, a sleep hormone. It leads to sleep deprivation which is responsible for other diseases like heart problems, weight gain and depression. You should avoid these at all costs, so it doesn’t impact your health in future. Put down that phone and start snoozing.
- Firstly, keeping your phone away while sleeping doesn’t let its radiations affect you.
- It is good for eyes.
- No phone, no sudden falls on the face if you start feeling dizzy. Most important, right?
#5. Change your sleeping position
Most sleep issues are directly or indirectly related to the surface and positions you change over the course of your slumber. Some like to sleep facing the pillow, some like to sleep sideways, while some on their back.
Best sleep position:
You grow habitual of your sleeping position after a while despite how it affects your body. Most people don’t realise or notice the effects of incorrect sleeping position, but in some way or the other it is responsible for causing body pain. The best position to sleep is to lie on your back facing the ceiling. Use a coiled towel under your spine and neck, if you are not accustomed to this posture. How it helps, take a further look at its benefits.
- It provides support to your spine and eases back pain or risk of getting it in the near future.
- It allows your head, neck and spine to rest in a neutral position, without causing any pressure that results in tensed or flexed muscles.
- It discards the possibility of acid reflux, which means your stomach acids backflow to the esophagus causing heartburn, coughing, vomiting and other symptoms.
Posture to avoid and why?
- Sleeping on your front side or face towards the pillow, causes immense pressure on your heart. This leads to bad or horrifying dreams, and you abruptly wake up in mid-sleep all sweaty.
- Sleeping on your sideways, especially on your right side should be avoided. It causes your hamstrings, pectoral and hip muscles to flex. It also triggers acid reflux. This disrupts your natural sleeping course.
#6. Aromatherapy never goes wrong
Healthline suggests that using aromatherapy is an effective way to fall asleep instantly that actually works.
What is aromatherapy?
Aromatherapy is a holistic treatment to help improve the health of your body, mind and spirit with the use of essential oils or chemical compounds with odour or fragrance. The essential oils help induce sleep and improve its quality.
How to do it?
There are two ways – you can either take a warm bath with the essential oils mixed in water or use a diffuser to infuse your room with essential oil droplets that evaporate and mix with the air.
Which essentials oils work best to improve the quality of sleep?
Although there are many oils that are used in aromatherapy for body relaxation, consider these to induce sleep. Lavender oil, Damask rose, Vanilla, Chamomile, and Sandalwood.
- Aromatherapy makes your mood positive.
- It reduces fatigue, stress, anxiety and transitions the body into a relaxed state.
- It helps you easily drift into your dreamland, and increases theta waves that put you in deep sleep, which is good so you don’t wake up in mid-sleep.
- It has other psychological and emotional health benefits, if you body massage with diluted essential oils.
#7. Limit your caffeine intake
Caffeine is known to cause ill-effects on your sleep. You might have heard that you should drink tea/coffee to stay awake for exam studies. Does the trick? No, it only inhibits your sleep hormones. This is helpful for a while if you are trying to stay awake but has long term adverse effects.
Things to do:
- You should limit the use of caffeine intake via chocolates, coffee, tea, energy drinks and others.
- It is better if you refrain from consuming caffeine six years before your bedtime.
- Use caffeine free drinks that enhance the quality of sleep, like Chamomile tea, herbal tea, cherry juice or warm milk.
#8. Apply 4-7-8 breathing trick
The way you breathe on your way to slumber is passively responsible for a good or bad nap. 4-3-7 is a breathing technique that will reduce anxiety and clear any obstructions in the way of your sleep.
Steps to follow:
- Place the tip of your tongue behind the tissue of your top front teeth.
- Empty your lungs by exhaling the air present.
- Now, slowly inhale for 4 seconds through your nose.
- Hold your breath for 7 seconds, you can count mentally.
- Purse your lips or press them inwards and exhale forcefully for 8 seconds making a “whoosh” sound.
- Repeat the steps 3,4,5 at least 4 times.
Everything takes time, so give it time. Get this breathing trick into practice and you will start noticing the results. Don’t think of it like a magic trick, it doesn’t work that way. You can also reduce the time frame from 4-7-8 to 2-3.5-4 to begin with.
#9. Have you heard of paradoxical intention (PI)?
You might be familiar with occasions when someone forces you to sleep and you end up doing the complete opposite. Well, this is where Paradoxical Intention or PI comes into action.
What is Paradoxical Intention?
It is a cognitive technique that supports your idea to stay awake rather than forcing yourself to sleep. It is recommended for insomnia or all nighters. Studies by sleep experts show that people with PI were likely to fall asleep faster than those allowed to sleep.
How does it help?
When you try to force yourself to sleep, it triggers anxiety and stress. This eventually prevents you from relaxing, thereby keeping you awake. However, PI acts as a reverse psychology giving you voluntary control over your sleep. This reduces anxiety or depression and helps you sleep faster without overthinking.
- Light or slow music triggers your brain to enhance the easy transition of sleep.
- It works just like a lullaby to make a kid fall asleep.
- Don’t listen to rock or high-intensity music, it might backfire.
#10. Use a tangible source to read and write
It is always better to develop a physical practice with tangible resources like reading or writing before sleeping. Remember how someone used to read and narrate your bedtime stories so you could slightly sway into your dreamland. Worked back then? It will work now as well.
Reading to sleep well
Read from a conventional book and not online. Pick genres that best suit your interest. The light disrupts the regular production of melatonin, a sleep hormone.
Writing to sleep well
Write a journal or diary. Pen down everything you did today or make goals for the next day. This way you erase any bad thoughts or ideas from your mind. When you lie down on the bed, fill your head with positive thoughts, visualise things or scenarios that make you happy. This relieves anxiety and helps you sleep faster naturally.
What should I eat to fall asleep quickly?
The food you consume affects your quality of sleep. Studies show that a high-carb or low-fat diet may help you fall asleep faster, but it cannot guarantee you a peaceful sleep. You should try consuming high-fat or protein-rich foods like spinach, and lettuce. You start feeling tired, your body will demand rest. Also, proper digestion is important before you go to sleep. Therefore, have your dinner at least 4 hours prior to bedtime.
Why do some people fall asleep faster than others?
It is pretty basic that all people have different lifestyles. As a result, the amount of work they do, their eating habits, and sleep patterns are also different. Someone who draws a 12-hour work shift may fall asleep as soon as they hit the bed. Whereas, another person who had no activity or had been binge-eating and watching TV lying on a couch during the course of his day might not feel tired at all. So, their body doesn’t feel a need to rest.
Also, some people sleep during the day as well, so their sleep time is reduced. This leads to them staying awake at night. Sleep hours differ from person to person.
How do I fall asleep in 1 minute or less?
Well, there’s no magic spell that will help you to fall asleep in a minute or less. An average person takes around 12-15 minutes to fall asleep. The time you take to fall asleep determines whether you are sleep deprived or have an appropriate sleep schedule. Don’t go on a market inspection spree trying to use every sleep device or aid to fall asleep quickly. These are just temporary solutions and work on long term effects.
You need to trick your brain into thinking you did a lot of work today. Put in extra efforts, mentally and physically to get the work done. Do certain tasks that have been pending, don’t procrastinate. This makes your brain cells think you overworked and need rest. Your body feels tired enough to fall asleep quickly in a few minutes.
Sleeping is the most important thing in your 24 hour schedule. Technically, everything you do throughout your day or don’t do will affect your sleep cycle. Your lifestyle, eating habits, activity and inactivity contribute to the quality of sleep you will get. There are several traditional effective ways to improve the quality of sleep naturally. It is better to learn how to sleep without using any tools or devices. You will be happy to notice changes if you practice these tips if you want to sleep instantly even when you are not tired. Give it time, trust yourself, work on the better you. Say goodbye to sleep issues and insomnia.