When going to bed is a night mare
A snoring partner. Too many worries. Thoughts running like a train in your mind. Counting 400 sheeps and still not being able to fall asleep…
For some people going to bed is horrible. They just can’t sleep right away. It might even take hours and hours of rolling over in their bed. But have you heard of the 4-7-8 technique? It’s one of the many breathing techniques on the rise. You don’t have to practice yoga to use the benefits of rhythmic breathing. Anyone can apply it. Even small children. The effect is truly amazing.
Breathing in and breathing out, it seems so simple. We do it automatically without thinking about it. Nowadays people pay more attention to the way we fill our lungs with air. There are vlogs, apps, coaches, workshops and wellness retreats that help you to become better at breathing. In short: breathing consciously is becoming a trent. It’s part of a new Mindfulness.
It only takes 60 seconds to fall asleep
The heart is a complex, dense nerve cluster in our body. What we call our ‘intuition’ is actually our heart sending and receiving nerve pulses and ‘feeling’ vibrations. Up to 4 times more than any other part of our body! When you breathe in a smooth (slow) rhythm, the beating of your heart will synchronize at the same pace. It will also slow down. Your nerve system will calm down. Stress hormones will drop. Your body will go in a relax modus. This explains why slow and deep breathes are so important, doesn’t it?
This is how you beat your insomnia
The 4-7-8 technique (invented by a famous American doctor Andrew Weil) is a handy trick for bad sleepers.
Lay on your back. Arms and legs spread (not crossed). Breathe in for 4 seconds through your nose + freeze (hold your breathe) for 7 seconds + breathe out through your mouth for 8 seconds.
Make it your habit to fall asleep like that every night. In the beginning, it might feel difficult. Maybe you breathe in for 2 seconds + freeze for 3 + breathe out for 6 seconds. That’s okay. The more often you do it, the easier it goes. When you focus on breathing, your muscles relax and it becomes easier to fall asleep.
I close my eyes and count in my head when I practice ‘slow breathing’. Sometimes I use the app Kardia. It’s handy to program the seconds and it comes with a relaxing sounds.
When you focus on your breathing, you let go of any worries and stop thinking. Sweet dreams!