Standard Dose Approved Sleep Tips

If your TikTok For You page or Instagram Explore feed has been flooded by “hacks” that promise to help you fall asleep quickly, you’re not alone; the tag #sleephack has millions of views on both platforms. But which of these sleep tips are worth the hype? Below, we unpack three of our favorites.

The Cognitive Shuffle

As explained in one video with more than 5.5 million views, the Cognitive Shuffle sleep method involves naming as many random things as you can. Dr. Luc Beaudoin, the cognitive scientist behind this technique, explains that the best way to do this is by picking a letter at random (like “T”, visualizing a word that starts with that letter (like “table”), spelling it out in your mind, then thinking of as many words as you can that begin with each letter of your original word (for example, “terracotta”, “apple”, and “broomstick”). 

Why We Love It: While we mostly tend to think in analytic or problem-solving ways, this task asks you to focus on items without making connections between them so you can lull your brain into a state of relaxation. This technique promotes a meditative state but, rather than asking you to clear your mind which can be difficult for newcomers, it actually encourages your mind to conjure easy-to-visualize, non-threatening thoughts that are conducive to sleep. 

Military Sleep Technique 

Another tactic that relies on the principles of meditation is the Military Sleep Technique. It begins by asking you to perform a body scan, moving from your head down to your toes and relaxing each area in turn. Once all tension has been released, simply inhale and exhale, imagine a warming sensation spreading throughout your body, and visualize yourself either lying in a canoe on a placid lake or relaxing in a velvet hammock in a dark room. 

Why We Love It: This method is essentially a visualization meditation! Also like meditation, this tactic becomes easier and more effective the more you practice. 

Wrist Rubbing 

This viral sleep tip is an easy one; it recommends you simply rub the inner part of your wrist (a pressure point for sleep) in circular motions to help you doze off quicker than ever before. 

Why We Love It: This technique stems from Traditional Chinese Medicine. As WTHN co-founder Dr. Shari Auth explained to Bustle, there are four acupressure points (called Heart 4, 5, 6, and 7) that start at the pink side of your wrist crease and move up your inner forearm. By massaging these points, you can help relieve stress and encourage relaxation. To take this one step further, you can try using an acupressure mat before bed to activate even more relaxation acupressure points around your body. 

Which popular sleep method will you be trying first? Whichever one you choose, we recommend incorporating it into a consistent sleep routine that can include limiting screen time, practicing gratitude, enjoying a ritual bath, and sipping a mug of calming tea.

 

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