Lucid Dreaming – How To Do It, And How It Can Change Your Life
Dreams are stories our mind creates during sleep. Dreams can occur anytime during the sleep cycle, but the most vivid dreams, including lucid dreams, occur during the REM (rapid eye movement) sleep.
Did you know that human beings start dreaming before they are even born? Scientists have found that babies in the womb start dreaming when they are only 23 weeks old. Without having experienced life outside the womb, who knows what they are actually dreaming about beyond simple feelings and sounds?
Although neurobiologists have never discovered precisely the meaning and purpose of dreams, we do know they play an important role in emotional processing and development.
What Is Lucid Dreaming?
Some children and adults experience a phenomenon called Lucid Dreaming. Lucid dreaming is when one becomes completely aware that they are dreaming, and are able to control some of what happens during the dream.
In most dreams, the dreamer is unaware that they are in a dreaming state. Because of this, the dream plays out like a story that is being watched. In a lucid dream, the dreamer becomes the story-writer, and can consciously choose to change what is happening.
How Can I Experience A Lucid Dream?
For some, lucid dreaming occurs naturally and unexpectedly. One night, they suddenly “wakes up” inside their dream and can begin consciously manipulating what happens.
For others, lucid dreaming doesn’t come as easily and they must make a conscious effort to enter a lucid state in their sleep.
Here are a few tips to help you experience a lucid dream:
- Keep a dream journal. Every morning when you wake up, write down anything you can remember about your dreams. This will help you train your mind to start remembering dreams more vividly, because it knows you are paying attention and it matters to you.
- Perform reality checks. Every few hours during the day, ask yourself: am I dreaming? You can also look at a clock or at your hand to see if it looks normal. In a dream, these things will appear fuzzy and will constantly change. If you perform these reality checks regularly there is a good chance you will start to do it while you are sleeping. The moment you recognize that you are dreaming, you will become lucid.
- Wake up after 6 hours of sleep, and stay awake for 20 minutes. Around 6 hours after falling asleep is when your longest REM cycle should start. If you wake up just before or as you’re going into this cycle and then fall back asleep, you are more likely to remember your dream and even enter a lucid state. If you have a hard time falling asleep after this, just lay in bed with your eyes closed and meditate. You are likely to begin dreaming before you know it.
- Set the intention. “I will lucid dream tonight.” Set the intention that you will experience a lucid dream.
3 Ways Lucid Dreaming Can Change Your Life
Dreams have a way of unlocking our deepest inner emotions and feelings. Often during our dreams, we subconsciously process things that are happening in our life. In a lucid dream, you have the ability to take this a step further and overcome psychological issues that may be negatively affecting your waking life.
#1 Overcome Grief
Have you lost someone you loved? If you are still experiencing grief or can’t talk about what happened, then it’s likely you never fully processed the loss. In a lucid dream, you can meet with your departed loved one and start to heal from their loss.
In such a dream, you can speak with this person and tell them what you wish you could have said before they died. You can spend time with them and even ask them questions if you want to receive their counsel or be enlightened by their thoughts and feelings.
Healing from grief in a lucid dream is powerful because it not only touches the conscious mind, but also the subconscious.
#2 Overcome Fears and Phobias
In a lucid dream you can practice overcoming fears you have in your waking life. For example, if you are afraid of heights you can practice jumping off a cliff or out of an airplane and flying. If you are afraid of public speaking, you can practice in your dream and see yourself being wildly successful and loved by the audience. If you are afraid of dogs, you can practice meeting many different types of dogs and having positive experiences with them.
The possibilities are endless!
#3 Come Up With Your Best Ideas
A lucid dream is an incredible space in which to brainstorm, find solutions to difficult problems, or come up with new ideas. Computer programmers find that in a lucid dream they can think more clearly and connect with their intuition more intimately to solve problems. Musicians and artists can create more freely in a lucid dream space because there are no limitations or boundaries. Athletes can practice their sport in a lucid dream, perfect moves and come up with new strategies.
Even doing a simple meditation in a dream and letting your higher self speak to you can bring about new ideas and a sense of purpose.
The world of lucid dreaming is one with endless possibilities and things to be discovered. Become a lucid dreamer and you will unlock a world of healing, self-improvement, enlightenment and also fun!
Have you ever had a lucid dream? Tell us about it below! How did you enter a lucid dream state? Did it come to you naturally or did you have to set the intention first?