What is it?
Lucid dreaming is a state in which the person that is dreaming realizes that they are dreaming and are able to take control of what occurs. Sounds like inception stuff to me! Although many people have never had a dream like this it is possible to "train" yourself to be able to do it. Not only is there training but there are also methods of falling asleep that make this type of dreaming easier. Once this state is achieved and the dreamer knows they are dreaming they will wake up. The shock from the realization that one is dreaming is often too much to stay awake. Clearly this will not be easy, and will in fact take a lot of time. Definitely more time than anything else on this blog. Here are some steps and methods to try out when attempting to lucid dream.
1. Remembering Dreams
This is the most important part of lucid dreaming because it's impossible to have a lucid dream without dreaming in the first place. Even for those who have little to almost no dreams it's possible to increase that amount. To do this one must keep a dream journal or some sort of thing that can be used to record. Keep this by the bed and every morning record any dreams. Even with the lack of a dream write down "no dreams". While writing down dreams put as much detail whether it be important or completely useless as possible for example the weather, facial expressions, colors, people, locations, and so on and so forth. Eventually the amount of dreams will pile up, get longer, and will be easier to remember. Also look for patterns that re-occur between dreams so that the next time they occur they will be recognized.
2. Reality Checks
Now that dreaming comes easily it's time to start recognizing the difference between dreams and reality. Doing reality checks at least three times a day when something feels out of the ordinary or "dream like" will plant that idea and during dreams those same reality checks will be performed but they will have different outcomes. For the first few times these realizations will immediately cause the dreamer to wake up but do not get discouraged. That is normal, keep trying.
- watch a clock, in a dream the time will not change
- lean against a wall, in a dream you may fall right through
- read a body of text look away and then look back, in a dream the text may change
- look at your hands, in a dream they will look significantly different than in reality
- look into a mirror, in a dream there will either be no reflection or a seriously distorted one (be careful with this, seeing a distorted reflection in a dream can often lead to nightmares)
- jump, in a dream jumping can lead to flying or floating
- poke yourself, in a dream human bodies have a different consistency
3. Sleep Paralysis
Sleep paralysis is a state in which a person is aware of being awake but cannot move nor speak. This is a large stepping stone into lucid dreaming and is one of the most effective methods. To do this lay in bed and get into a comfortable position, preferably facing up with hands by the sides. Now lay there and DO NOT MOVE. There will be many urges like itches and blinking but do not fall for these. These small annoyances check to see if a person is awake. By not giving in to these disturbances the body is being tricked into a sleep that it is not really in. During this time lucid dreaming comes easily. By now dreaming should come easily, enjoy yourself and have fun in your dreams.
4. WBTB Method
The wake-back-to-bed method is one of the most successful techniques. To do this set an alarm clock to five hours after sleep is reached. Next fall asleep. When the alarm goes off sit there meditating about lucidity and dreams. Try to stay up for about an hour doing this. While falling back to sleep think about the fact that you will realize that you're dreaming when you dream and let it sink in.
Congratulations, you now have a great way to eat up time fast while doing something pretty cool. Don't forget to do all of the crazy things you could never do on earth in your dreams. Instead of driving to school in a car, dream about riding to school on a battle stag while firing missiles at oncoming traffic. The more creative you are the better your experience will be. Good luck and enjoy! Post any dreams in the comments, I'd love to know what your experiences are like!