Welcome to the worlds of lucid dreaming. Everyone is capable of having them, and many people report having had at least a few over the course of their lifetimes. Imagine being able to have them regularly! Our aim is to help you toward that goal.
Lucid dreaming is a natural and exciting way to have adventures, try superhuman activities, practice for upcoming events, relive past experiences, or explore possible futures. As with many things, lucidity takes practice and patience, and most report that over time their lucid experiences have been deeper, more frequent, and longer. There are two ways to induce lucid dreams: wake-induced and sleep induced. This article aims to describe very basic methods of each. The links below contain even more information.
Wake Initiated Lucid Dreaming (sometimes referred to as WILD) involves entering a dream directly from the waking state. Most wake induced techniques involve you lying motionless and thereby tricking your brain into thinking you've gone to sleep. Given your natural sleep cycles, timing is everything with a wake-induced lucid dream. The best times to try WILD is either by waking yourself up during or right before a REM cycle, or through taking a nap during the day. You'll have to experiment to find the best timing for the former - everyone's REM cycles are different - though you may have success trying to wake up about two hours before you normally do in the morning.
To successfully do WILD you need to wait for and become aware of your hypnagogic hallucinations, those dream snippets and strange sensations that happen while you are still awake but slipping into the sleep state. At the point you need to remain calm, conscious, and focused, telling yourself that you are going to remain lucid as you drift into the dream state.
Dream Initiated Lucid Dreaming (DILD) is the most common form of dream induction. There are several methods that can be used in combination to accomplish DILD. First, the use of meditation and mantras before you fall asleep may help "program" your mind to have a lucid dream. Clearing you mind and repeating something like "I will be aware while I am dreaming" many times is a good first step. Second, you can go about your normal day frequently asking yourself whether you are dreaming. This may help build that same inquiry into the dream state, and if the answer is yes...
The third way to practice DILD is the most interesting and powerful. Every person has a set of "dream signs" which are parts of reality that are distorted in their dreams. Dream signs may include not being able to see your reflection, having extra fingers or toes, being able to walk through walls, etc. (On our main site we list many more dream signs, the link is below). If you go about your day looking for dream signs, when they do happen in your dreams it may snap you to lucidity.
This article presents only a very short and general overview of lucid dreaming. Then again there is nothing terribly complicated about it! Much more information is available. The most important thing is that you are willing to be patient, diligent, and creative as you pursue having regular lucidity. It will be worth it!
For more detailed information about techniques you can use to have lucid dreams, plus access to free information and advice about lucid dreaming please see the lucid dreaming center. For our blog with up-to-the-minute ideas and coaching, see this lucid dreaming how to blog.
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