LUCID DREAMING

 Lucid Dreaming is a type of conscious dreaming in which you are aware that you are dreaming. Lucid Dreaming itself is a form of mind training that uses the platform of the dream to gain insight and access to levels of mind which in the waking state can't be achieved. It is estimated that it is experienced by most people once in their lifetime.


HOW TO PERFORM LUCID DREAMING?

Anyone can learn to achieve lucid training with practice. You can have it anywhere- in a park, in a car, in room, on a bench, all you have to do is SLEEP and a lot of practice. Lucid dreaming techniques train your mind to notice your consciousness. They’re also designed to help you regain or maintain consciousness as you enter REM sleep. Different techniques are-
  1. Create a hygienic environment
Find a sleep schedule that suits you and try to stick to it. Maintain a hospitable surrounding in your bedroom. Prefer a dark and cool environment. Keep your electronics away for at least 30 minutes before sleep. Having good sleep hygiene can increase the period of your REM (Random Eye Movement) sleep, the most important factor to achieve lucid dreaming.

      2. Keeping a dream journal
It is a traditional and effective method in which a dream journal is kept beside when you are asleep. Keep a notebook and pen near your bed and make a habit of writing your dream. It's said to identify your dream signs and enhance awareness of your dream. It is also recommended to read your journals regularly.

     3. Have a taste of reality
Having a reality check on whether you are dreaming or not is a good and effective way of increasing awareness. People try different things to keep a check on it like - pinching hands, seeing a reflection in the mirror, and many more. It is recommended to pick a reality check and perform it every day, ask yourself 'am I dreaming?', this will help to train your mind and repeat reality checks while you are dreaming.

     4. MILD (Mnemonic Induction of lucid dreams) technique 
It is a technique in which a mantra like 'It is a Dream' or 'I am dreaming' is decided and repeated whenever you realize a dream sign. Then go back to sleep and try to have the same dream but this time be conscious about a lucid dream. By repeating this mantra, you’re encouraging your brain to be aware when you begin dreaming, increasing your chances of having a lucid dream.


    5. WBTB ( Way Back To Bed ) technique
  • Set an alarm for 5-6 hours after your bedtime.
  • Wake up and get out of your bed and do some activity like reading, writing, or meditation.
  • After 20-60 minutes of the activity, go for sleep again.
If the method works, your conscious mind will remain active even as your body falls back into REM sleep.
The above-mentioned techniques are some of the few techniques for lucid dreaming, there are many more.

BENEFITS

  • Less anxiety
  • Better motor skills
  • Improved problem solving
  • More creativity
When a person experiences nightmares, it causes anxiety, stress, sleep disturbances, depression, etc. But when you are Lucid dreaming, you will know when it's a nightmare and recognize if it's real or not. When used in therapy, lucid dreaming can help treat conditions like recurring nightmares and PTSD.

There are few negative effects too like improper sleep,  confusion, hallucinations. Vivid dreams can wake you up and make it harder to go back to sleep again. You might not sleep well if you’re too focused on lucid dreaming.