Written by Ellen Alson, Sleep Psychologist & Guest Writer
When we fall asleep, most of us tend to dream. Unfortunately, not all of us get to dream, and a certain percentage get to experience nightmares while another see the happy ending in their dreams.
It’s a fact, no one would love to experience nightmarish visions, and that’s why people tend to practice controlling their dreams.
So if you want to achieve your deepest fantasies or get a hand on your fears, you should try lucid dreams. After mastering lucid dreaming, your every day will be like ending with a free bonus no deposit in the form of an exciting night trip.
Before we teach you tips and tricks to get lucid dreams, let’s first understand lucid dreaming.
Understanding Lucid Dreaming
A lucid dream is a state where an individual is in a conscious state while dreaming. In this state, you can control the dream and get to explore where the imagination takes you. Dream control varies from person to person, and the world you will be exploring is brought into existence by your subconscious mind. And you will be aware that you are dreaming.
Some people experience lucid dreams every night, while others experience them once in a while. So make the most out of your colorful dreams. However, if you want to venture into lucid dream experiences every night, use some tips discussed below. But first, let’s understand the two types of lucid dreams.
Types of Lucid Dreams
Dream-initiated: This is a type of lucid dream that starts when you have slept for some time. In this dream, you become conscious, such that you know that you are dreaming, allowing you to control your imagination.
Wake-initiated: This is a type of lucid dream that starts immediately you fall asleep. You can easily control this type of dream because it begins when you are not deeply asleep. The best part about this type of dream is to plan what you want to dream with some practice.
When do People Experience Lucid Dreams?
Lucid dream experiences mostly happen during rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. When you are in this state, your brain remains active, thus triggering dreams. It is said that every adult experiences four cycles of sleep where REM and the last cycle conclude, each stage is the longest and also where people experience longer lucid dreams.
Tips for Lucid Dreaming
Sometimes, lucid dreams can happen instantly, and sometimes you have to induce them. If you want lucid dreams experiences every night, use the tips below.
Journal your dream experiences
Your brain must differentiate dreams and reality. This will help you know when you are experiencing lucid dreams. Colorful dream experts suggest that people perform activities that test their sense of reality several times a day. This will go a long way into enhancing lucid dreams.
Make sure to record every little detail you remember about the dream after waking up. This will help you be in tune with your dreams.
Be keen and mindful during the day
Being aware of your surrounding during the day can help you be more mindful at night. A dream expert, Cheung, says that dreams are a continuation of our day, so if you repeatedly notice that you see your surroundings in your dreams, it’s time you pay attention.
Maybe your dreams will have more meaning. Proper nutrition and engagement in fitness activities ensure a healthy body that is not overwhelmed by dreams.
Engage in the fantasy world
If you are looking to get rid of lucid dream negative effects, engage your mind in fantasy such as fairytales as it will help you in your dream state.
You can also engage in lucid dream hypnosis, where an expert guides you through your dreams, sometimes to remember or forget something.
You can also do the following exercises to induce colorful dreams:
- Use your index finger in one hand and press it against the palm of your other hand. Do it several times a day ( at most 10). During the day, your index finger will face resistance, but at night, it passes through. Consistency will train your brain such that you will do it even when experiencing lucid dreams.
- Check the time, look away, and then check again. Although the time won’t change, it will probably be forwarded or rewind.
- If you read a book, look at the next page, look away, and look again. Although the pages will not change, your dreams will show you a different page.
- Pay attention to your hands and feet. In reality, they will be normal, but in your dreams, they may appear distorted.
- Lucid dream meditation can also be effective in inducing colorful dreams.
- Make your bedroom a comfortable place, which enhances lucid dreams by getting rid of the bad energy and stress. This can be done by lighting up scented candles or incense. You can also set the right room temperature and ensure that the mattress is comfortable to have a goodnight sleep.
What are the Benefits of Lucid Dreaming
Enhance your motor skills
If you want to perfect specific skills, such as playing the piano, lucid dreaming is the perfect method. If you have perfected the art of inducing lucid dreaming, you can incorporate the piano practice into your dreams.
This allows you to practice without physically doing it. And when you remember it during the day, you can actualize your dreams.
It helps face your fears
You have had a nightmare at one time, and if you’d like to confront them, try lucid dreaming. It allows you to face your demons and win. And the upside is you can’t get hurt in your dreams.
For instance, if you dread public speaking, create a visual where you are giving a speech, and every person in attendance gives you a standing ovation.
Enhances better sleep
Instead of waking up in sweat due to a nightmare, control your dreams to dictate the ending. This means you will get a positive finish, preventing you from waking up, thus getting quality sleep.
A source of inspiration
Lucid dreams can act as a source of inspiration because we often dream of things we’ve not experienced. Other times, our dreams are a result of something we experience during the day.
Since your subconscious keeps track of every detail, your dreams might come in handy when you need to spark your imagination.
We would all like to control what our subconscious conceives during our sleep time. However, not all of us are lucky to control and direct our dreams. You now know tips and exercises to follow to experience lucid dreams. Also, the benefits you will reap after mastering the art of colorful dreams.
Before venturing into the world of controlling dreams, get informed of all lucid dreams facts to avoid experiencing the adverse effects, such as sleep paralysis, mental issues, and sleep disruptions.
Have you ever experienced lucid dreams? Was itself-induced, or did it happen spontaneously? Please share your experience and questions in the comment section.
About the Author
Ellen is a sleep psychologist. She is a highly trained mental health professional and has been treating patients with sleep problems for over 3 years. In her spare time, she writes materials to help others who may need her expertise.