If you’re aiming to get the recommended amount of sleep, an average of 8 hours per night, you’ll spend close to one-third of your life asleep. If you live to be 90, you’ll spend 6 years just dreaming!!
This isn't wasted time, though, because as we transition from day to night we can continue our spiritual journey through lucid dreaming.
Lucid dreaming is the experience of becoming aware that you’re dreaming while remaining in the dream and is deeply transformational psychological work.
In our conscious state, during waking life, we’re only aware of about 1-2% of what’s going on in the mind. Dreams, however, allow us to tap into further stretches of the mind where we process memories and emotions from the day.
Becoming consciously aware within a lucid dream is especially powerful because the conscious mind can begin to explore the contents of the subconscious and unconscious.
In a lucid dream you can shine light on deep aspects of your being like the memories and experiences that formed your core beliefs, habits and behaviors. Being able to relate to these parts of your identity can help inform and transform your waking life.
Lucid dreams have been known to offer life-changing insights, advance creativity and personal growth as well as assist in deep healing like overcoming phobias, ending reoccurring nightmares, soothing emotional wounds and even mending the physical body.
To help you embark on this type of spiritual journey, we’re sharing 6 methods experts recommend to improve your chances of having a lucid dream:
1. Meditate during the day.
Have you ever had a dream that stuck with you through the next day? Just as dreams can influence the day, what you do when awake will carry over into the night. Practicing mindfulness in waking life will pave the way for being mindful while sleeping.
2. Focus your mind before bed.
Avoid electronic screens for at least 30 minutes before going to bed, do some mindful breathing to help quiet mental chatter and enjoy any pre-sleep rituals that will relax your body and mind. We've included Nocturne Magnesium Spray from Luna Nectar in our March 2020 Lucid Dreaming Box to help you do just that. As you start to fall asleep, tell yourself that you’ll become aware while dreaming.
3. Sleep sober.
Sleeping under the influence of alcohol, drugs or even powerful sleep-inducing herbs can disturb your quality of sleep and prevent you from cycling through all stages of sleep. REM (rapid eye movement) sleep is the last stage of four when your brain becomes more active and produces dreams. The first period of REM sleep typically happens 90 minutes after falling asleep and lasts for about 10 minutes. Each time you cycle through the four stages of sleep, the REM stage gets longer with the final stage lasting up to an hour. For lucid dreaming, it’s best to maximize your time spent in REM sleep.
4. Avoid eating before sleeping.
Going to bed on an empty stomach can help you fall asleep faster because your energy isn’t tied up in digesting. More time asleep means having more time to cycle through REM sleep. However, if going to bed on an empty stomach keeps you awake with hunger pains, this method could disrupt your sleep quality which is not helpful. Always listen to your body first.
5. Sleep on your right side.
Laying on your right side helps open up the left nasal passage. Breathing through the left nostril can help activate the right brain which is known to regulate the rest and digest response and process things like emotions, images, color, music and creativity. Sleeping on your right side could help create more vivid dreams that are more likely to grab your attention.
6. Keep a dream journal.
Journaling helps with dream recall. Jot down your dreams within a minute of waking up so you can begin to remember the details and become more familiar with your dream landscape. Next time you visit, you'll know where you are.
Now that you’ve got a few methods to help induce lucid dreams, remember that it can take practice and lots of patience.
When you do become aware that you’re in a dream, here are a few reality checks you can use to confirm that you are in fact dreaming.
If you're interested exploring consciousness while you dream, be sure grab our March 2020 Lucide Dreaming Box while they're still available.
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