Image by John Fisher

How to fall asleep in 60 seconds — a doctor says it really works

Having trouble falling asleep? A doctor in Arizona says you can forget pills or wearing a sleep mask or whatever you’ve tried — he claims a simple breathing exercise can put you out in one minute or less.

“The 4-7-8 Breathing Exercise is utterly simple, takes almost no time, requires no equipment and can be done anywhere,” Dr. Andrew Weil says on his YouTube channel.

The first thing you do is place the tip of your tongue against the ridge of tissue just behind your upper front teeth, and keep it there through the entire exercise. Now, follow these steps:

1. Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound.

2. Close your mouth and inhale quietly through your nose to a mental count of four.

3. Hold your breath for a count of seven.

4. Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound, while you count to eight.

5. Now inhale again and repeat the whole thing three more times for a total of four in-and-out-breaths.

Next thing you know: Dreamland.

You can watch the doctor taking you through the whole thing in this video, although I’m not sure why it takes the guy five minutes to explain how to fall asleep in one minute.

It’s all based on an ancient Indian practice that promotes a state of calmness, and the doctor claims that once you get the hang of it, you can use the technique to stay calm in all kinds of daily situations, like bad traffic or a conflict at work.

Good luck, and sweet dreams!


About John Fisher

John is a Midwest native who started his Northwest radio career in 1992 after moving to Seattle from Chicago. He’s an avid cyclist, painter, traveler, foodie, and dog lover (Hazel and Gizmo, both shelter dogs.) He’s worked with various animal organizations including PAWS, Seattle Humane Society and Seattle Animal Shelter. John got a late start on fatherhood – he and his wife have a 5-year-old son named Dawson who already has a crush on Katy Perry.