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What is the fastest way to fall asleep in the military?

Quality sleep is crucial for optimal functioning and performance in any profession, but it holds even greater significance for military personnel. The unique demands and challenges faced by individuals serving in the military can often disrupt their ability to fall asleep quickly and get the rest they need. In this blog post, we will explore effective strategies and techniques to help military personnel fall asleep faster and improve the quality of their sleep.

Creating a Conducive Sleep Environment

One of the first steps in improving sleep efficiency is to create a sleep-friendly environment. Here are some tips to make your sleeping space more conducive to quick and restful sleep:

Maintain a comfortable temperature

Research suggests that a slightly cooler room temperature between 60-67 degrees Fahrenheit (15-19 degrees Celsius) promotes better sleep. Experiment with different temperatures to find what feels most comfortable for you.

Reduce noise and distractions

Military environments can be inherently noisy, making it challenging to fall asleep quickly. Use earplugs or white noise machines to block out external noises. If possible, try to designate a quiet area for sleeping.

Use a comfortable mattress and pillow

Invest in a high-quality mattress and pillow that provide adequate support for your body. A mattress that conforms to your body’s natural curves and a pillow that keeps your neck in a neutral position can significantly improve sleep quality.

Darken the room with curtains or blinds

Light can interfere with the body’s natural sleep-wake cycle. Use blackout curtains or blinds to block out external light sources and create a dark environment that signals your brain to initiate sleep.

Establishing a Bedtime Routine

A consistent bedtime routine can signal your body that it’s time to wind down and prepare for sleep. Consider incorporating the following practices into your routine:

Follow a consistent sleep schedule

Military schedules can be unpredictable, but try to establish a consistent sleep schedule as much as possible. Going to bed and waking up at the same time every day helps regulate your body’s internal clock, making it easier to fall asleep quickly.

Engage in relaxation techniques

Relaxation techniques can help calm the mind and prepare the body for sleep. Consider practicing deep breathing exercises, such as the 4-7-8 technique, where you inhale for a count of 4, hold for 7, and exhale for 8. Progressive muscle relaxation, where you systematically tense and relax each muscle group, can also promote relaxation and alleviate tension.

Limit exposure to electronic devices before bed

The blue light emitted by electronic devices disrupts melatonin production, making it harder to fall asleep. Avoid using electronic devices, such as smartphones and laptops, at least one hour before bedtime. Instead, engage in activities that promote relaxation, such as reading a book or taking a warm bath.

Avoid caffeine and heavy meals before bedtime

Caffeine is a stimulant that can interfere with sleep. Avoid consuming caffeinated beverages or foods within a few hours of bedtime. Additionally, heavy meals close to bedtime can cause discomfort and indigestion, making it harder to fall asleep quickly. Opt for lighter, easily digestible evening meals.

Physical Preparation for Better Sleep

Regular physical exercise can have a positive impact on sleep quality. Incorporate the following practices into your daily routine:

Engage in regular physical exercise

Regular exercise promotes better sleep by reducing anxiety and stress, releasing endorphins, and promoting overall physical well-being. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise most days of the week.

Stretching and light yoga before bed

Stretching and doing light yoga poses before bed can help release tension in the muscles and promote relaxation. Incorporate gentle stretches and yoga poses that focus on deep breathing and relaxation.

Ensure proper hydration throughout the day

Dehydration can disrupt sleep patterns and lead to discomfort during the night. Drink an adequate amount of water throughout the day to stay properly hydrated but aim to reduce fluids close to bedtime to minimize nighttime bathroom trips.

Mental Preparation for Better Sleep

In addition to physical preparation, mental preparation is crucial for falling asleep quickly. Try the following techniques:

Practice mindfulness and meditation techniques

Mindfulness and meditation practices can help calm an anxious mind and promote a sense of relaxation. Take a few minutes before bed to sit quietly and focus on your breath or engage in a guided meditation practice.

Write down thoughts in a journal to clear the mind

If racing thoughts or worries keep you awake at night, consider writing them down in a journal. This practice can help offload your thoughts and provide a sense of relief, allowing you to clear your mind and fall asleep faster.

Use sleep aids approved by a healthcare professional, if necessary

If your sleep troubles persist despite trying various strategies, consult a healthcare professional. They can evaluate your situation and recommend sleep aids or therapy options if necessary. It’s important to approach sleep aids with caution and under professional guidance.

Utilizing Relaxation Techniques

Relaxation techniques can be effective in promoting quick and restful sleep. Try the following methods:

Breathing exercises and mindful relaxation

Practice deep breathing exercises, such as diaphragmatic breathing, to calm your mind and release tension from the body. Combine deep breathing with mindfulness techniques to cultivate a state of relaxation before sleep.

Visualization and guided imagery

Use visualization techniques to create a peaceful and calming mental image. Imagine yourself in a tranquil setting, such as a beach or a lush forest, and focus on the sensory details to enhance relaxation.

Listening to calming music or nature sounds

Listening to soothing music or nature sounds can help create a serene atmosphere that promotes relaxation and sleep. Experiment with different genres or nature sounds to find what works best for you.

Seek Professional Help if Necessary

If your struggles with falling asleep quickly persist, it’s important to seek professional help. Discuss your sleep issues with a healthcare provider who can evaluate your situation and explore potential underlying factors affecting your sleep. They can recommend appropriate treatments or therapies tailored to your needs.


Quality sleep is essential for the physical and mental well-being of military personnel. By creating a conducive sleep environment, establishing a bedtime routine, physical and mental preparation, and utilizing relaxation techniques, you can improve your ability to fall asleep quickly and get the rest you need. Remember, seeking professional help is crucial if you continue to experience sleep difficulties. Prioritize sleep and prioritize your overall health and performance as a military professional.


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