You have heard about lucid dreaming and think it is something you would like to do. That is a good starting point but exactly how do you begin and what are the steps to being a successful lucid dreamer?
It’s important to think about why you’d like to become a lucid dreamer, too. There are a number of benefits to dreaming this way, but first we should look at normal sleep, so we’ll understand them.
Have you ever considered the process of sleep before? Every night you make preparations, crawl into bed and go to sleep. You may have dreams or nightmares or all may just be dark for a few hours, it is rather boring isn’t it?
The human body has a built in requirement for sleep. It rests the body so that we are prepared to continue our lives. Without it, there is strong evidence for insanity. That is all well and good but there is nothing saying we cannot control certain aspects of sleep is there?
Lucid dreamers are in complete control of their dreams. This allows them to explore new worlds in their mind and expand the scope of their dreams. Lucid dreamers can also conscious choose not to have nightmares – they just change the dream.
Are you are ready to begin but remain unsure of how any of this is possible? That is ok we are getting there, there are two way to enter lucid dream state. The first is a dream initiated lucid dream, (DILD). This happens once you have already begun to dream and during the dream, you come to the realization that you are indeed dreaming. At this point, you have brought an element of control to the dream because your conscious mind is now involved.
Another popular method is to have a wake initiated lucid dream (WILD); this is a straight shot from awake to asleep with no lapse in your consciousness. This is usually achieved by purposefully retaining awareness during the hypnagoogic state, which directly precedes sleep.
How exactly do you induce either one of these lucid dream states?
If you’d like to lucid dream, perhaps one of the most successful way of doing so is known as dream recall. Dream recall is simply the ability to remember one’s dreams. By remembering your dreams, you are able to recognize them when you are sleeping, because most likely, you will have the same dream, or at least aspects of it, more than once.
To make dream recall easier you can keep a dream journal. This is a notebook or pad of paper that has the sole purpose of recording your dreams. Whenever you have a dream, you should write all you can remember in the journal as soon as you wake up. The longer you are awake the more details of the dream that will be lost.
Mnemonic Induction of Lucid Dreams (MILD)
Developed by Dr. Stephen LaBerge the idea is to tell your self to recall an object or situation from your dreams, before you go to sleep. You can look back to your dream journal for an example of a recurring them like a pink haired woman. Anything that when you see it in your dream will tell you that you are in fact dreaming.
The process here is to go to sleep, doing nothing but setting your alarm to wake you up a few hours later (5 or 6). Once you wake up, DO NOT go back to sleep. Instead, do something else like read for a while, or think as much as you can about lucid dreaming for around an hour then go back to bed.
In studies done this method has 60% of the time. When you are interrupted in the middle of sleep, you are interrupting rapid eye movement sleep. This is the time when dreams are the most active. Therefore, you stop in the middle of your best dreamtime only to return to sleep a short time later, improving your chances of entering lucid dream state.
Cycle Adjustment Technique
This was created by Daniel Love, and what it is, is setting your alarm to wake you up an hour and a half before your normal time. Once you’ve adjusted to waking up early, alternate your alarm to wake you up normally and early. During times you are to wake up normally, you’re body will already be ready to wake up early, and therefore, you will be likely to be awake in your dream.
Wake-Initiation of Lucid Dream (WILD)
This method was mentioned above. To achieve a lucid dream using it, all that’s needed is keeping your mind awake while your body falls asleep. This is one of the most interesting ways of having a lucid dream. It’s as if you’re getting ready to watch a movie – you start in the real world, sitting on the couch, and turn on the television and press play (when you start to sleep). The screen begins black, just like when your eyes are closed, and all you need to do is wait for the movie or dream to start.
To get into this correct frame of mind if you will there are a few tricks you can use. Focus seems to be key so try to focus your mind on things like your breathing, counting, perhaps chant or meditate. In a way, you are practicing self-hypnosis. Use this technique when you are not extremely tired, perhaps during a late nap.
First, it was cds and DVD’s now we have devices that will help you lucid dream. Masks and other electronic apparatuses can be used to recognize REM sleep and give you a light buzz or light to make you aware that you are dreaming.
Definitely the easiest and most reliable way of inducing a lucid dream however is by listening to binaural beats sound frequencies via headphones.
These work by synchronizing the two hemispheres of the brain and have the effect of almost instantaneously changing your brainwaves to the REM frequency needed for a lucid dream to occur.
Combined with the self hypnosis sessions and affirmations to prepare your subconscious mind beforehand, becoming a lucid dreamer is something that everyone can now experience!
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