Counting Sheep is Just The Beginning

Tricks and Tips for Falling Asleep


Sheep (Photo credit: James Good)

When you have trouble falling asleep, do you count sheep?

It turns out, barnyard critters are only the beginning. People are quite creative when it comes to trying to entice their minds to turn away from daily concerns and toward dreams.

Here are some helpful tricks for lulling the mind to sleep that friends and clients have shared with me:

  1. Count backwards from 100.
  2. Mentally recite a poem they memorized.
  3. Name the members of their grade school classmates…pick a year and picture each child in order, row by row as if seeing them seated in the classroom.
  4. Name all the regular characters in their favorite TV show in alphabetical order, returning to A whenever they slip up. (“Downton Abbey” in this case … Yes, I admit it, this one is from my repertoire :))
  5. List all the members of a favorite baseball team and their outfield position.
  6. Mentally drive a familiar route (i.e. from home to work), going at a slow steady pace to see every detail.
  7. Starting with getting into bed, work backwards through your day listing each activity from brushing ones teeth before bed, to turning off the TV … etc.

What about you? What do you do when you are lying in bed, trying to fall asleep?


You can’t dream if you don’t get some sleep! For more information on dreams and sleep visit my website:

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