Lack of sleep for a photographer or bride/groom-to-be can be a true nightmare. Celebrations and festive seasons such as Christmas and New Year’s Countdown often leave many of us to staying up really late or not sleep at all. This disrupts our sleep cycle, and when it’s time to go back to bed by 1030pm, we often find ourselves frustratingly wide awake.

So what is the trick to sleep?

Perhaps Yoga enthusiasts would already know, the 4-7-8 breathing method pioneered by Dr. Andrew Weill from Arizona, assures most insomniacs that by continuously practising the breathing method, one can fall asleep within 60 seconds. Dr. Weill explains that the 4-7-8 breathing method allows one’s body to act as a natural tranquilizer for the nervous system, reducing stress and tension in the body, and putting one to a good night’s sleep.

How to do it?

  1. Raise your tongue to the tip of your mouth, slightly above your teeth and maintain it there throughout the exercise.
  2. Through your mouth, exhale completely to the extent that you hear a “whoosh” sound, at the same time, you can also feel your stomach pushing out a bit.
  3. Close your mouth.
  4. This time through your nose, inhale quietly and softly in a steady momentum for 4 seconds
  5. Now exhale completely through your mouth in one large breath, again with that “whoosh” sound for 8 seconds.
  6. Next, inhale again and repeat the cycle three times using a total of four breaths.
Remember, inhale quietly with a steady momentum through the nose while exhale loudly through your mouth.

The science behind it

The 4-7-8 exercise helps one to take in more oxygen, which helps us to relax our nervous system and advocates a state of calmness. Rebalancing our nervous system can help to repel our state of stress as it allows us to connect with our body through the breathings and distract our thoughts that may be the mastermind to keeping us awake.