Lucid dreaming is the artful act of keeping varying levels of consciousness while sleeping. It is incredibly fun and revealing experience. AS you consciously interact with elements in your dream realize that you are interacting with personified aspects of your subconscious. People have been lucid dreaming for time out of mind. Once you start it, the experience will open up new levels of communication with yourself in and out of sleep. When I started lucid dreaming I stopped having nightmares.
Check Your Reality First
The ability to stop amidst any sort of craziness and register where you are at is crucial. You need not only to be able to register your physical surroundings but your ‘location’ in each moment. By this I mean acknowledging you current emotional, mental, and spiritual relationship to your perceived surroundings.
Through out your waking hours examine the particulars of your surroundings. Where is that shadow being cast from. Where is the nearest heating source to you and how is it effecting you? The ability to qualify your surroundings is going to come in handy once you fall asleep. Get in the habit of questioning everything. Ask yourself often, ‘am I awake or dreaming’.
Recognize Dream Signs
These are discrepancies you should train yourself to distinguish. They range all over the board and are very particular to the person. The attention to detail (reality checks) will be vital. Can you see with out any light sources? Did you just travel a huge distance in moments? Electronic devices are fairly agreed upon to never work as intended in dreams (printing a fax directly from your phone or your toaster housing exotic birds). Shapes changing shape size or into another object altogether are other indicators you are dreaming. As soon as something is off do a ‘reality check’ and investigate.
Mnemonic Induced Lucid Dreaming (MILD)
This method uses repetitious intention and awareness to build the bridge into dream land. Right before you sleep send a couple of minutes building the intention to carry your conscious mind into the dream world. Affirm you are awake by telling yourself aloud that, ‘I am awake. I will carry my consciousness into my dreams. I will remember my dreams when I wake.’
When you wake up, IMMEDIATELY catalog your dream. If the specifics elude you right down any associations and feeling you had or have. As you fall asleep after your mantra try to focus on the previous dream to connect the different presences you have. Repeat this process tweaking it as you go to build awareness.
Wake Induced Lucid Dreaming (WILD)
WILD takes a different sort of discipline. Have a clock primed to wake you up five to six hours after you fall asleep. You fall into cycles of REM sleep (start dreaming) after the first ninety minutes. You continue to fall in and out of REM sleep. After five to six hours you’ve gone through all the possible cycles. When you wake examine what happened. Did you dream? Were you aware of the event? Repeat this nightly until you start to lucid dream. Once you can get get into that frame of mind there is no need to prematurely wake yourself.
Externally Induced Lucid Dreaming (EILD)
There is a dream mask offered by The Dream Mask LLC. It uses neural receptors to tell when you’ve entered REM sleep and uses external stimulus (LED lights and auditory tones) to gently alert the user they are dreaming. It takes a little getting used to but people around the world are finding it to be effective after the initial adjustment period.
I’m personally not comfortable with this idea for a number of reasons. So here are other solutions. You can drink coffee to keep your mind awake. This works only if you have that level of control to separate your mind form your body. You can also mess with you regular sleep schedule. Changing your sleep cycle can jolt you into a better ‘position’ to lucid dream.
All of these techniques are interchangeable. Experiment with what you are and aren’t comfortable with. The key to success, no matter your procedure, is persistence and consistent observation. You aren’t going to get this right off the bat so try and have some fun!