Outfitters Journal

Explore our stories for a wide range of topics, from helpful tips to the latest sleep technologies and innovations. Our team of expert Outfitters offers insight into common sleep problems and advice on selecting the right mattress and accessories to find the perfect sleep solution for you.

Counting Sheep

— by Sleep Outfitters on Mar 26, 2024

Some people count stars, others prefer to count their blessings, but does counting sheep really help you fall asleep? The idea behind counting sheep is forcing your brain to focus on a mundane task rather than worry about any anxieties plaguing your mind. Absorption in a task is an aspect of mindfulness and can assist with relaxation, while the repetition of counting can help calm the mind and prepare the brain for sleep.

A woman sleeping in bed.

What happens when you can’t focus on counting? This task is too dull for some of us, so our thoughts have room to wander. Before we know it, we’re replaying the day’s events or running through tomorrow’s troubles. While there’s no clinical evidence about the success of counting, the research explores different techniques for distracting our minds in preparation for sleep.

One method proven to work is imagery. Using all your senses, imagine a calm and relaxing scene – like walking through your favorite park or sailing in a gentle breeze. Some find it helpful to prepare their scenario in advance to have a getaway waiting in their mind when they wind down. When brainstorming what to visualize, consider choosing an engaging place without too much excitement to help ease into a state of peacefulness.

No matter what technique you use, we hope it brings you better sleep and sweeter dreams. (You can decide whether or not there are any sheep involved!)

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