Unlocking the Secrets of Lucid Dreaming: Techniques and Experiences

Cory Fitch Police

Everybody dreams — whether they remember it or not.

But not everyone experiences lucid dreaming. According to estimates, about 55% of people have at least one lucid dream in their life, when the dreamer knows that they are dreaming and are fully aware of their consciousness. Around 23% of lucid dreamers say they have such dreams at least one time a month.

While it may sound, well, odd at first, Cory Fitch Police notes that many believe lucid dreaming allows individuals to control what goes on in their dreams. And that’s why it is potentially so powerful.

Lucid Dreaming 101

For some, lucid dreams seem very realistic, while others say the dreams blur the lines between reality and fiction. For others, every single lucid dream feels different from the last.

What’s universal is that lucid dreaming is a state where one is aware that they are aware — aware of their consciousness as a type of metacognition. Scientific research into lucid dreaming has escalated during the past few decades, which has led to the development of techniques to induce lucid dreaming, its potential to treat certain medical conditions, and more.

Benefits of Lucid Dreaming

While research into lucid dreaming is still unlocking its secret, there are several potential benefits to experiencing this self-aware dream environment.

Researchers have linked lucid dreaming with facilitating higher levels of creativity, providing inspiration for everyone from inventors to writers and artists. In addition, it may actually allow people to effectively practice and hone new skills in a controlled, safe environment.

Lucid dreaming is also viewed as a way for people to experience psychological healing through exploring their subconscious and confronting fears. The ultimate goal: learning more about oneself in ways never used before.

Others have reported that lucid dreaming offers freedom to explore fantasies unbridled from physical limitations and that lucid dreams offer personal guidance and heightened awareness.

Cory Fitch Police

Unlocking Vivid Dreams

The potential of lucid dreaming to clear up mysteries of consciousness is promising enough for people to develop techniques that induce the state. One technique is to prepare for lucid dreaming at night by focusing on questioning one’s reality through the day in the hope that reality questioning transfers to sleep.

Another approach is keeping a dream journal, where one records dreams, they recall in the morning in order to decipher patterns and increase the chance of dream recall. Reviewing dream journal content may trigger lucid dreaming. Others recommend practicing meditation or mindfulness exercises before bed to encourage entering lucid dreaming with a heightened awareness state.

All-day awareness may also lead to lucid dreaming since it encourages constant awareness of one’s surroundings, senses, and the world’s logic. Most lucid dreaming methods are designed to help people maintain consciousness when they are in REM, or rapid eye movement, sleep when lucid dreaming takes place.

One notable method is wake-initiated lucid dreaming (WILD). In this approach, someone lies down and relaxes until they enter hypnagogic hallucination, which is experienced right before falling asleep. In WILD, one begins to enter a dream straight from waking life, helping the mind stay aware and conscious even when the body enters sleep.

Cory Fitch
Cory Fitch Minnesota