Tag Archives: dreaming

Lucid Dreaming

 

Photo by Jayne Forest

I’m a little obsessed with dreaming, specifically lucid dreaming. In bringing up the subject of dreams casually to friends and acquaintances, I’m always shocked when I hear people say they don’t remember their dreams, or that they have strange recurring dreams but they don’t really care, or that they don’t see them as important. Dreams have always been such a vivid, huge part of my life because I used to fly regularly in my dreams. I used to actually cry as a child because I was mad I couldn’t fly anymore. I’ve spent my entire life trying to regain my ability to fly.

 

One day I had a bad dream and my Dad told me “Honey, you can control your dreams. You just have to decide to change them.” No one had ever told me that! It fascinated me to know that I could choose not to have bad dreams. The following night I had a scary dream where someone was chasing me with a gun. They stuck a rifle in my face, and I realized that I was dreaming, and remembered what my dad had said. I put a tampon into the front of it, and it was unable to shoot, fully disabled! I walked away and realized he was still chasing me but had ditched the gun, so I ran off of a cliff into water. I was so scared and in the instant I was falling I said quickly “Please be warm water with tile at the bottom like a nice pool!” and IT WAS.

artwork by Jayne Forest for Trader Joe’s  @jaynesartaddiction on IG

TIP #1:

KEEP A DREAM JOURNAL

I know, that sounds like something that a ten-year-old girl would have, but seriously people, if you want to have lucid dreams you have to reiterate to your subconscious that your dreams are important to you. Writing them down is a great way to do this.

It is also is a valuable record of your recurring “dream signs”, which are things/places/people that often come up in your dreams. When you see your dream signs in waking life and do a reality check, you will do the same in your dream state and it will hopefully help trigger your awareness, and induce lucidity.

Keep your journal and a pen right beside your bed, so that you can write down any details you can remember immediately upon waking. You basically start forgetting all of your dreams within seconds of waking, so the best thing to do is just wake up and jot it down with bleary eyes.

You may find yourself remembering only a few tiny details at first, but in time you will find yourself filling pages with details. The most amazing thing to me is that I will write down details, fall back asleep, and when I wake, I barely remember having written what I wrote! Experimenting with my states of consciousness like this is fascinating to me.

TIP#2

GET PLENTY OF SLEEP

You can’t be tired, or drunk, or stoned. I knoooooow probably not what you wanted to hear. We are depending on the sharpness of the mind to become lucid, so clarity, sobriety and a rested mind and body are of utmost importance. It’s really good motivation to be all healthy and stuff though! The window of time you are most likely to lucid dream is two hours before you would normally wake up. You have to get about 4-5 hours of sleep before you begin to hit prime lucid dreaming time. So you’re looking at 6-8 hours of sleep for a few nights in a row to be rested enough.

RIP Amica

TIP#3

REALITY CHECKS

The main key thing to realize is that while you are in the dream state, everything feels totally normal. This is why we don’t always become lucid in our dreams.

By making a point to become consciously aware of your surroundings and to ask yourself “Am I dreaming?” you will start to do this in your dream state as well. What we do in ‘real life’ is what we do in our dreams, so if you do enough reality checks, you will eventually do them in your dreams and become lucidly aware!

There are a few ways to do reality checks, my favorite is to look at your hands and ask yourself, “Am I dreaming?” If you are dreaming, your hands will look very strange, melty, wavy, you might have three or seven fingers.

You can also jump wherever you’re standing, and if you’re dreaming, you will float. You can also plug your nose with your hands and try to breathe in. In dreams, you will still be able to breathe. Perform these reality checks as often as you can think of it. The more, the better odds you will do it in your dream that night!

North Shore Lake Tahoe

TIP #4

AFFIRMATIONS

Your own mind is the gatekeeper of your ability to lucid dream. If you learn to control your mind with affirmations, you are much more likely to lucid dream.

Throughout the day, or right before bed, tell yourself aloud, with conviction and focus, “Tonight in my dreams I will realize that I’m dreaming.” “Tonight in my dream I will look at my hands and realize that I’m dreaming” Over and over and over. The more you believe yourself, the better it works, the more you repeat it, the more you believe it. This has totally worked for me numerous times if I start diligently repeating this a few hours before bed!

TIP #5

WAKE BACK TO BED

One trick for people who don’t suffer from insomnia, is the “wake back to bed” method. Set your alarm for 5 hours after you’ve fallen asleep, or for 2 hours before you are supposed to wake up. When your alarm goes off, find some mellow way to kill time for 20 minutes. This way you will wake your mind up, but you’re keeping yourself in a mildly dreamy state of consciousness. After 20 minutes of yoga/reading/peeing/meditating, lie back down and tell yourself your affirmations before drifting back to sleep. This technique worked beautifully for me! I don’t recommend this method for insomniacs, because you may not be able to fall back asleep, and that shit is terrible.

Viparita Karani is great for insomnia and lower back pain. Put your legs against a wall for relaxation and restoration.

I wish you the best of luck lucid dreaming! I have more tips, but this is just a brief beginner tips kinda thing. Write to me with any questions, or if you have any tips to share with me by clicking here!