To all our insomniac friends tossing and turning in your bed with the only hope, wish and - dare I say it - dream of falling comfortably into Morpheus' sweet embrace - finally, you may rejoice! And stop counting sheep! The solution to this common sleeping problem comes from the United States' army, who has developed a technique that guarantees sleep in 120 seconds.
'Have you tried the Supersleep tea?' , 'What about yoga or meditation?', 'The thing that works for me is sleeping with a white noise machine'... Everyone has their little sleeping trick that is more or less effective. According to the Daily Mail, a radical method that was already revealed in the 1981 book Relax and Win: Championship Performance has just been rediscovered. Maxisciences is here to give you all its secrets, so you can ditch the sleeping tablets and sleep music that never work.
A military technique to defeat sleeping problems
Insomnia, whether it is a problem of merely falling asleep or experiencing sleep interruptions, affects a third of men and women in their forties and fifties. And the news is even worse for women over 65, as that figure shoots up to 65%. Simply put, it is not an isolated problem and its numerous consequences are definitely a cause for concern.
Indeed, chronic lack of sleep or poor sleep quality can lead to serious health issues: diabetes, cardiovascular disease and changes in brain structure.
The US military decided to address this predicament in a proactive way. Rather than waiting for their pilots to make more mistakes due to fatigue, they developed a technique allowing them to fall asleep in under 2 minutes so that the pilots could recover faster and more efficiently. The method is so effective, in fact, that the military can even use it whilst deployed in areas of combat.
Effective in 96% of cases
Based on a combination of muscle relaxation, breathing techniques and visualization exercises, this method requires training each night for 6 weeks in order to see results.
Lying down, one starts by relaxing the muscles of one’s face by concentrating on relaxing one’s tongue, unclenching one’s jaw and loosening the area around the eyes. From this step follows the lower part of the upper body, lowering the shoulders as low as possible, all the while relaxing each arm, feeling the tension leave the top all the way to the bottom, one arm after the other. Breathing is key in this technique so one must make a conscious note of its ebb and flow. Thus, one expires slowly and deeply while releasing any pressure felt in the chest. Much like with the upper body, one must relax one’s legs, feeling the sensations from the thighs down to the feet.
Once the whole body is relaxed, the position is held for 10 seconds.
After the physical part comes the mental relaxation. One must completely empty the mind of all thoughts. This exercise is not as straightforward as it seems when everyday concerns can quickly pollute this quest for serenity. In order to achieve this, the US military recommends the following 3 solutions:
- Visualising oneself at the edge of a lake or in a canoe on calm water with just the blue sky above one’s head.
- Imagining oneself comfortably settled in a black velvet hammock and in a blacked out room.
- Repeating as many times as necessary for 10 seconds ‘Do not think about anything, do not think about anything, do not think about anything’.
After 6 weeks of training, this technique is apparently effective in 96% of cases. When do we begin?