WHAT IS LUCID DREAMING? 7 TIPS ON HOW TO LUCID DREAM (PRACTICAL GUIDE)
Natalya Pazdnikova's Practical Guide on How To Lucid Dream
In this post, I will be giving practical tips on how to lucid dream. You can learn more about the whole phenomenon of dreaming in my other blog post where I take a deeper dive into the psychology of dreams.
So What Is Lucid Dreaming, Exactly?
Lucid dreaming is the experience of becoming conscious and fully aware of the fact that you are dreaming. It is the phenomenon of you bringing your conscious attention from the waking state into dream state, and then you awaken within the dream. There are different intensities of consciousness and focus when you are awake, so the same happens when you experience lucidity while you sleep.
Sometimes it is just a glimpse of awareness when you, for example, see some form of danger in your dream and wake yourself up, or make a semi-conscious decision of some sort. Sometimes moments of lucidity can remain for a few seconds, and sometimes you can have a full-blown experience which you wouldn’t confuse for just a normal dream, often remembering it after you wake up.
WHAT I AM GOING TO SAY NOW IS NOT INCLUDED IN THE TIPS BELOW BECAUSE THIS ’TIP’ IS ABOVE ALL TIPS - IT IS THE MOTHER OF ALL TIPS - HAVE A PROPER SLEEP ROUTINE!!! This is crucial and it should be your number one priority for learning how to lucid dream, and for your well-being overall.
TIP 1 - TRAIN YOUR FOCUS
HOW TO LUCID DREAM BY DEVELOPING FOCUS
The vital ability you need to develop to be able to lucid dream is the ability to focus. By focus, I don’t mean super intense "nothing can distract me" type of focus, but rather a gentle focus that you can effortlessly navigate, that you have control over, that you are conscious about.
Many people have experienced full-blown lucid dreaming at least once in life, and it is certainly something they will never forget. But I can also say that MOST of us experience it slightly but we tend to forget. Most of the time, we become lucid for a few seconds and then the dream takes over. It takes FOCUS to remain lucid in a dream for longer than couple of seconds.
Our focus is our main human superpower and it can affect not only the length of your lucid dream experience but it can also improve your whole life in general. You can train your focus in many different ways. Practice meditation, conscious breathing, mindfulness, and positive thinking (choosing what to think and what not to think). The biggest challenge nowadays is not to be distracted and have power over our own attention. It is crucial for mental health and for lucid dreaming experiences. Having a daily routine of spiritual practices can help you train your focus, be present and elevate your state of consciousness for a more positive experience of life.
Choose a Spiritual Practice That Works For You.
TIP 2 - KEEP A DREAM JOURNAL
HOW TO LUCID DREAM BY KEEPING A DREAM JOURNAL
It is very hard sometimes to make yourself write down your dreams the first thing in the morning. No matter how much you want to sleep, train yourself to write them down as soon as you opened your eyes, because:
you will establish and nurture your connection to your subconscious
you will recall your dreams more easily
you will train yourself to distinguish a dream from reality while in a dream
you train your willpower when you dedicate to a practice, and your willpower will be Everything!
TIP 3 - SET A CLEAR INTENTION
HOW TO LUCID DREAM BY SETTING AN INTENTION
It might seem like an insignificant tip, but our intentions are powerful. Intention is action without action. Intention comes before the action or experience. Someone who intends to lucid dream is more likely to experience it rather than someone who does not. I began lucid dreaming when I first started to learn about this phenomenon. The wish to experience it along with 'tip 7' below made me experience it almost immediately. So before you fall asleep, tell yourself “I'm going to lucid dream tonight,” and it might just happen!
This part can be tricky for those who desperately want to experience lucid dreaming because the energy of obsession will keep you away from it. Everything we crave to have to the point that it drives us crazy, will usually keep running away :). The attitude of "whether it happens or not, it's fine either way" will take you a long way. Don’t overuse this tip, verbalized intention without too much emotional charge is enough.
TIP 4 - DEVELOP SELF-AWARENESS
HOW TO LUCID DREAM BY BECOMING SELF-AWARE
Being fully conscious in a dream is not necessarily abnormal, I think it is the direction towards our further intellectual evolution. But for now, it's still unchartered territory where you bring your consciousness to. Therefore, awareness in a waking state is very important in order to experience lucid dreaming. Coming from the state of ignorance, reactionary life, or autopilot mode, into a state of self-awareness in every moment and every action, understanding what we are doing and why we are doing it.
You can raise your awareness in various ways as well as learn about yourself through so many different modalities. You can read a book, take a course of some sort, or go to a mental health practitioner or a guide. As a Certified Psychologist and Spiritual Awakening Coach, I can assist you with self-exploration and healing. Click on the picture below to book a Self-Discovery Game where you will be able to UNDERSTAND, LOVE and ACCEPT yourself on a whole new level ⬇
TIP 5 - EAT A HEALTHY DIET
HOW TO LUCID DREAM BY EATING HEALTHY
This topic is huge, but since I’m not a nutritionist, I will only make a few points. It is important to consciously approach what kind of food we eat because it affects our bodies, thoughts, emotions, state of clarity, as well as the quality of sleep we get. You have to be very in touch with your body to notice how different foods affect you not only physically, but also psychologically. Or, you can go to a nutritionist or a good doctor who takes care of that for you. We can try to keep track of what food we eat, and at the same time, what thoughts visit us. We can all develop this type of sensitivity and awareness.
There are 2 beneficial supplements to help with lucid dreaming that I have been recommended but haven’t tried - ORMUS and ONEIROGENS. Maybe you will :).
There is also a lot of information on the internet about other herbs that can enhance lucid dreaming experiences. Here is a list of a few of them:
– Calea Zacatechichi – ”the dream herb” – increases dream clarity and vividness
– Mugwort – improves your dream recall, makes your dreams more vivid, induces more colors
– Ginkgo Biloba – memory enhancer, improves dream recall, brain boost
– Passionflower – improves sleep quality, effective insomnia treatment
– Peppermint – muscle relaxant, aids for peaceful sleep and supports dream vividness.
TIP 6 - USING EXTERNAL DEVICES
HOW TO LUCID DREAM WITH THE HELP OF TECHNOLOGY
Some people use the alarm clock method which fully wakes them up. Some also recommend staying awake for up to an hour before going back to sleep. You can read about these methods on the internet, but I have to say that I am very much against such harsh methods. Quality sleep is very important, and we must not play with it.
There are plenty of devices on the market you can choose. From bracelets that vibrate to glasses that give out light signals at a certain time, the goal of these devices is to trigger your conscious mind and slightly bring you back to awareness in your sleep. Usually, the first REM sleep stage happens 90 minutes after you fall asleep - it occurs approximately every 90 minutes and lasts 10-20 minutes.
The impulse of your choice should be subtle and minimal. The goal is not to fully wake you up but rather to trigger your consciousness, so you carry it with you into the dream world.
If you are serious about having a lucid dreaming experience, I would first suggest planning out your sleeping routine and then stick to those sleeping hours. With dedication, it can take up to one week only, yet eventually benefit every aspect of your life! As your body gets used to falling asleep and waking up at certain times, you'll learn the usual hours of your REM states and plan your lucid dreaming experiences accordingly.
TIP 7 - GUIDED HYPNOSIS AND AFFIRMATIONS
HOW TO LUCID DREAM WITH GUIDED MEDITATIONS AND AFFIRMATION
There are plenty of recordings for lucid dreaming on YouTube that are up to 8-9 hours long - they work, try them out! Background noise keeps your sleep shallow, and it can enhance spiritual experiences, but it can be damaging in the long-run.
WARNING: Do not to overuse this method as for proper melatonin release, our brain needs QUIET time to sleep! This is very important and a lot of people (including myself) who overuse guided meditations / affirmations / hypnosis during sleep time eventually face great sleeping difficulties!
I would also like to mention "THE ART OF DREAMING" audiobook by Carlos Castaneda on youtube where he shares his views on this topic as well as techniques to fall asleep while REMAINING conscious through the process of falling asleep. I am currently trying to practice this method and it is just, wow! I am speechless :). I am not going to try to explain the essence of this technique as his explanation is much better. You can find it for yourself with a quick search.
In the end, I want to remind you once more - a proper healthy sleeping routing is YOUR #1 PRIORITY!
FREE RESOURCES FOR MENTAL HEALTH AND SPIRITUAL CONNECTION: