A long time ago, at a very young age, I had a dream in which I not only noticed I was dreaming but was completely aware and able to manipulate the dream. Later on, I found out this was what is called a lucid dream, and I never could replicate the experience. Thankfully, though, scientists have found a technique to do just that.
A lucid dream is a dream in which we are aware of the fact that we are dreaming. While not all lucid dreams provide the ability to manipulate the experience, with practice you can. For those of you who have never had a lucid dream, this may sound like hogwash, but I assure you, it’s possible.
For many years, scientists have been looking into the possibilities of lucid dreaming. One particular scientist, Dr. Denholm Aspy has been working to create techniques to make the process of lucid dreaming easier. To do this, he has combined reality testing, WBTB, and a technique they refer to as MILD into one technique. The MILD technique is setting alarms at five-minute intervals, to wake the sleeper, so they can become aware of their dreams by using affirmations. This helps because when we wake from sleep and then go back, we go into a cycle of sleep that is easier to become aware of.
Science Daily provides his technique and shares it as follows:
1. Reality testing- which involves checking your environment several times a day to see whether or not you’re dreaming.
2. Wake back to bed- waking up after five hours, staying awake for a short period, then going back to sleep to enter a REM sleep period, in which dreams are more likely to occur.
3. MILD (mnemonic induction of lucid dreams) — which involves waking up after five hours of sleep and then developing the intention to remember that you are dreaming before returning to sleep, by repeating the phrase: “The next time I’m dreaming, I will remember that I’m dreaming.” You also imagine yourself in a lucid dream.
If you follow this technique, Dr. Aspy says you will have a 20% higher chance of being able to lucid dream. His various studies have shown him that, and the more you try, the higher your chances will be. With that being said, here’s a great podcast episode from his Lucid Dreaming Podcast that provides a lot of great insights.