Getting a good night of sleep is absolutely crucial to being in peak physical shape the following morning. And given the potentially deadly consequences of exhaustion on the battlefield, it’s perhaps no wonder that the US army has a strategy to help soldiers nod off in just a few minutes.
The trick was first revealed in Relax and Win: Championship Performance, a 1981 book by Lloyd Bud Winter on how to utilize athletic methods to ease tension and better succeed in life, but it began making the Internet rounds after Joe.co.uk recently published a piece on the hack.
According to the book, the practice was effective for 96 percent of people after just six weeks, and consists of four easy steps. Read on to find out what they are, and for more guidance for your best sleep ever, read up on how I Tried Clean Sleeping for Two Weeks and It Changed My Life.
Relax All of the Muscles On Your Face
This includes the muscles around your eyes, as well as your tongue and jaw. You might not even notice that you’re clenching your teeth, but many of us do, and it’s a definite sleep inhibitor.
Drop Your Shoulders As Far Down As They’ll Go
Then drop your upper and lower arms, one side at a time.
Breathe Out Through Your Chest
Then consciously relax through your legs, working your way down from the thighs.
Clear Your Mind By Thinking Of These Three Images
For a full ten seconds, imagine yourself either a) lying in a canoe on a lake with nothing but a clear sky above you, b) lying in a black velvet hammock in a dark room, or c) saying “Don’t think” to yourself over and over again.
For what it’s worth, this method is probably pretty familiar to anyone who falls asleep to guided meditation, as it also asks you to relax your body piece by piece, and then visualize yourself in a calm environment. For more on this, learn why Science Says You Should Listen to This Type of Music Before Going to Sleep.
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