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Comments: 980 • Responses: 87  • Date: 

Latter_460 karma

Fine i'll be the one who asks. How realistic is the sex?

howtolucidofficial308 karma

The sex can and does feel VERY real and pleasurable. It's a little different though because for the most part, this is the problem:

When you get too excited and your body has a physical response (you know what I mean) the dream starts to collapse and you wake up. It's why usually when you're getting shot in a dream, the pain and situation makes your heart rate rise, you start to sweat (in real life) and you'll wake up pretty soon.

Same thing with dream sex. You get aroused, your heart rate rises and you're going to wake up fairly soon.

So lucid dream sex is a pretty quick experience, and because the dream is constantly fading during it because you're excited, you can't focus on it too well. It still feels great and you wake up aroused etc, but it fades quickly.

OhyeahOhio475 karma

So lucid dream sex is a pretty quick experience

So pretty realistic then?

howtolucidofficial229 karma

Yes very

ChrimDeep96 karma

I used to lucid dream very frequently through the practice of keeping a dream journal after seeing Richard Linklater's Waking Life. Whenever I'd started having sex I would almost immediately find it to be a tame and unimaginative use of lucid dream experience, maybe a step beyond pornography but not really like the real thing. If you ask me, the best thing to do is to fly.

howtolucidofficial32 karma

I agree, flying is incredible! I have a quite detailed guide on flying and lots of other amazing impossible experiences you can have in lucid dreams here: http://howtolucid.com/lucid-dreaming-superpowers/

Neurogence16 karma

I had an orgasm/ejaculation in a dream once. It felt identical to the real thing, but in the real world, I had no erection at all. Do you think I can find a way to replicate this?

howtolucidofficial2 karma

Sure. Enter a lucid dream and expect to have sex in that way again. you will!

OathToAwesome8 karma

Can you have lucid dream sex if you've never had sex in real life? On the same train of thought, how well can you experience situations in general in a lucid dream if you've never personally experienced them?

howtolucidofficial13 karma

Yes you can! Your brain sort of fills in the gaps and makes up what it thinks it feels like, based on films you've seen or what you think it might be like

thecrunge01197 karma

What are the major drawbacks of lucid dreaming?

howtolucidofficial328 karma

There are actually a few.

Firstly, it can become a little bit addictive and you can even start to prefer a dream to reality, but that's fairly rare,

Secondly, depending on the technique you're using, it can make you tired. There are certain techniques like the WBTB (Wake back to bed) which involve cutting your sleep in half at 4AM, BUT you don't HAVE to use those techniques.

Pros and cons I guess!

aky1ify124 karma

Lucid dreaming seems horribly anxiety-inducing to me. Is that a thing

howtolucidofficial115 karma

I understand how it could seem that way from the outside, but I assure you that it's actually the opposite. It can be used to improve your health, mind, emotions and how you feel.

It is actually widely used to treat PTSD so that says a lot about how it can be used to treat anxiety, rather than causing it! :)

SupaPineapple46 karma

I'm also a lucid dreamer but not a professional or anything. Isn't there also the risk that, while you're cycling through the stages of sleep that you experience sleep paralysis?

howtolucidofficial30 karma

Of course. In fact with many lucid dreaming techniques, (like the WILD) they RELY on deliberately staying awake in your mind THROUGH sleep paralysis, so that you can enter the lucid dream without having ever really gone to sleep.

It can be scary at first and while you're learning you'll have some scary experiences but once you've mastered it, it's really good and you can use it reliably almost all the time.

This guide can show you how to get started as a complete beginner: http://howtolucid.com/5-steps-to-lucid-dreaming/

ecniv_o27 karma

Sounds like the plot to Inception

howtolucidofficial27 karma

Inception has a LOT in common with lucid dreaming. The main thing that isn't quite right is the dream sharing part, we're not quite there yet and science has a bit of a way to go to get to that stage.

I think dream sharing WILL be possible in the future, 100%

I think you'd enjoy the superpowers guide as it has a section talking about the future of lucid dreaming and some crazy advanced stuff you can do: http://howtolucid.com/lucid-dreaming-superpowers/

Metathetical_Chemist111 karma

I don’t think I’ve had a normal dream that I can remember for at least a year now. Do you know a way that I can recall normal dreams ?

howtolucidofficial172 karma

Yes!

So dream recall is something that plays a MASSIVE part in lucid dreaming. It's usually the first thing you need to do.

If you can't remember your dreams it's either because you're not sleeping very well, OR you're not practicing the act of recalling them. The best way to test this is to get a small sleep tracker and make sure you're getting at least 8 hours of sleep and it's good quality sleep with REM sleep included.

Secondly, start a dream journal, and every morning, write down your dreams that you can remember. If in your case you can't remember ANYTHING at first, that's fine too, just write 'no dreams recalled. It's the act of writing SOMETHING down and TRYING to remember your dreams that tells your brain your WANT to remember them,

After a few days or weeks of doing that, you WILL start remembering your dreams more. I promise you that! If you want to get started lucid dreaming and learning more about this, I'd suggest going through this: http://howtolucid.com/lucid-dreaming-superpowers/

Metathetical_Chemist28 karma

Awesome, I’ll give it a try. Thanks !

howtolucidofficial49 karma

You're welcome. Let me know how you get on! I'm going to keep this AMA going for most of this weekend hopefully, so please upvote things and maybe reply to some peoples comments etc? Cheers!

Metathetical_Chemist10 karma

I’ve been sleeping very poorly lately but I’ll give it a try tonight and let you know how I got on in the morning. Oh and if you have any advice for how to get enough sleep that would be appreciated. I procrastinate sleeping a lot.

howtolucidofficial15 karma

Yes, getting enough good sleep is most often just about routine and your circadian rhythm. Sleep and wake up at the same time every day, even on weekends. It's important! They say that sleep is a force multiplier, and it's true.

Sleeping well will make EVERYTHING else you do easier, and better.

Try pillow spray on your bed, close your curtains at night and turn off any screens or sounds in your room. Turn your phone on silent and place it where you can't see or reach it.

tin_men17 karma

Does taking cannabis reduce ability to recall dreams?

howtolucidofficial51 karma

Yes it does. Cannabis is a REM suppressant meaning it makes your REM sleep shorter or non-existent while you're taking it.

This means you have drastically less dream time or even no dreams.

BUT when you STOP taking cannabis, a day or so after you'll get a 'REM rebound' which is a surge of longer than normal REM sleep in which it's very likely you'll have crazy dreams and they'll be likely to be lucid as well.

Dutchwank23 karma

I'm a heavy user. I smoked everyday for the last 15 years, i know its bad, pls don't judge.

Anyway, how does it work with me because i dream a lot and can always remember my dreams. I also have the ability to fly in most of my dreams but sometimes i just need to concentrate really hard to take off.

howtolucidofficial18 karma

I don't judge, don't worry.

I think it is probably holding you back, but if you can't give up completely, maybe try having weekends off and see what effect that has on your dreams and lucid dreaming?

dizzydabomb3 karma

Can you recommend a "small sleep tracker" to start with? I am a student and the $100+ fitness moniters are somewhat hard to justify in a nearly paycheck to paycheck budget. I would really like to get a start on this though, I know my personal doubts and fears about myself are (a) irrational (b) bound to hold me back in school and in present and future careers, and (c) not something i can break through at the moment. I know being forced to look at my sleep habits and subsequently being forced to budget sleep will help immensely. Still, if i could eventually multi task and work on improving my mental and emotional health, during those hours of the night no one else can break into or interrupt? Or even, waking up in the morning, feeling rested because I actually was able to RELAX in my dream, and remember that feeling???

Pinch me, that seems like a dream right there.

howtolucidofficial1 karma

Of course, I'd suggest something like a Fitbit as it tells you the quality of your sleep and where it went wrong/right etc, they can be found fairly cheaply here: http://amzn.to/2hKdva7

wonderbass89 karma

Lucid dreaming has been a really big fascination of mine for a while but I never seem to have enough time to go full steam into it. Can you give some advice as to how one can get into lucid dreaming so it will on a work schedule or a technique that doesn't make you feel really tired?

Thanks for the AMA

howtolucidofficial40 karma

Of course! To get started with just 3-5 minutes a day I've actually created a structured plan that tells you EXACTLY what to practice on each day for 30 days.

It's turned out to be super effective for dreamers of all levels. You can learn more about it here: http://howtolucid.com/30-day-lucid-bootcamp/

Failing that, just meditate for 5 minutes every morning, do reality checks throughout the day and practice a new induction technique every week.

xRyozuo4 karma

What do you mean induction technique?

howtolucidofficial3 karma

A technique that you can use to directly induce a lucid dream. Here are the main ones: http://howtolucid.com/category/induction-techniques/

wonderbass4 karma

Thanks! I'll definitely try it out. I'm positive the meditation is good even if I don't end up lucid dreaming

howtolucidofficial3 karma

100%, meditation is very important even if lucid dreaming and dreams didn't exist!

howtolucidofficial61 karma

Don't be shy ladies and gents

ItsTheGuyOnTheCouch11 karma

I've had a lot of problems with very bad nightmares and night terrors for a while. Some people recommend lucid dreaming to help combat them. What are your thoughts on that? And would you recommend it?

howtolucidofficial11 karma

100% yes lucid dreaming can and IS used to combat nightmares for a lot of people. It's certainly helped me over the years and I now almost never have any nightmares. It's very very rare that I do now. I used to a lot.

I think this will be more helpful for more detail on combating nightmares: http://howtolucid.com/how-to-overcome-nightmares/

catdeddy39 karma

As a child, I pretty much exclusively had lucid dreams. They seemed to taper off as I aged, and now I hardly remember my dreams at all. Is there any reason that lucid dreaming can stop occurring like this?

howtolucidofficial24 karma

Yes, usually as we age we either stop paying attention to dreams and don't TRY to remember or interact with them,

OR we just naturally have worse sleep either through an unhealthy routine like not sleeping long or well enough (high pressure job, weird work shifts like night shifts or alternating shift times)

It could be one of those reasons, or it could just be that as we age we pay less attention to our dreams and focus on other things. It can easily be bought back by just focusing on it more. Like any muscle, you either use it or lose it,

So to start having more lucid dreams, the first step is to TRY and have more lucid dreams by reading about it, reading Reddit posts like this one, reading books, practicing reality checks and having lucid dreams in your mind throughout the day!

Hope that helped

Inactivated13 karma

There are some devices that are supposed to flash a light while you are sleeping to trigger a lucid dream. Any thoughts or recommendations?

howtolucidofficial15 karma

The devices that flash lights in your eyes during the night I've found don't work THAT well, without a basic understanding and foundation of lucid dreaming.

I mean they're cool, they look great and they can work if you know how to use them but for beginners who've never had a lucid dream and just order something like from Kickstarter, it's likely not going to make the instantly lucid dream.

Sure there are stories that they instantly work sometimes but most of the time it's difficult and people that get those devices have to research and learn how to lucid dream AFTER they've bought them.

With ANY lucid dreaming supplement or device I find the most EFFECTIVE way of using it is to COMBINE it with lucid dreaming techniques and things like:

Reality checks, Dream journalling, Meditation, Good quality sleep

That's just my two cents!

SineMetu77712 karma

Have you found that the brain adapts to these techniques and makes them harder to do the longer and more frequently a person lucid dreams?

I used to lucid dream a lot naturally, in some cases even had full control of the dream, lighting, environment, other people's actions.

Lately though I'd had absolutely no luck in even recalling dreams, let alone going lucid inside one.

I've done a lot of the introductory techniques before but haven't had much success lately, I think my dreaming mind is so aware of those techniques that it adapts to them, so for instance instead of seeing illegible signage or writing and realizing it's a dream, I make sense of it and continue along.

howtolucidofficial15 karma

Of course. In fact, one of the main things I teach in the lucid bootcamp (http://howtolucid.com/30-day-lucid-bootcamp/) is that techniques need to be changed every two weeks or so.

This is so that you keep your brain guessing and make sure it never gets used to any technique or method. You're right!

Even with things like reality checks, it's good to rotate them and keep it fresh and new. There's a reason people seem to dream more when the go on holiday or go somewhere new, it's beause it's rbeaking up the routine and you're experiencing something new.

I've found that my most vivid and deep profound lucid dreams happen when I either go traveling, or do something that day that I've NEVER done before.

SineMetu7776 karma

[deleted]

howtolucidofficial5 karma

Yes!

In fact in lucid dreams as I explain a LOT in my superpowers guide (http://howtolucid.com/lucid-dreaming-superpowers/):

The things you EXPECT to happen in a lucid dream, either consciously or not, WILL usually happen.

Why don't we fly most of the time in our lucid dreams? Because we have a deep belief that gravity is REAL and that if we jump off a building we'll fall down.

That belief needs to be deliberately changed and addressed while you're lucid dreaming so that you can do things that you normally KNOW you can't do in reality.

JamesPKP12 karma

What’s the best and worst part about lucid dreaming? How hard is it to learn to lucid dream? What’s been your favorite lucid dream you’ve had?

howtolucidofficial32 karma

The best part is that ANYTHING you want to experience, you CAN.

It will feel real, you will remember it as it being real, and it will make you as happy as if you'd DONE the thing in real life.

The bad side is that you can SOMETIMES mix up dream memories with real memories, especially if you start lucid dreaming about normal sort of things like conversations and things that you COULD easily do in real life.

I like to make sure to keep my lucid dreams so different to reality that I can easily tell which is a dream and which wasn't.

UncomfortablePrawn12 karma

I’m sure you get this a lot: how far is Inception from the reality of lucid dreaming? Is time dilation actually a thing in lucid dreams?

howtolucidofficial25 karma

Time dilation is subjective. Meaning, while you're IN the lucid dream, it CAN feel a little bit like time is going slower of faster than it really is.

In reality though, you're not dreaming for much longer when you FEEL like you are. It's an illusion of the mind. You can never get 'trapped' in the lucid dream for years on end, you just might have the odd experience which feels like a long dream but actually isn't.

Hope that makes sense!

alchemyhead8 karma

Hey, thanks for the AMA! I have kind of the opposite problem/question that I imagine you usually get; how do you STOP lucid dreaming? I have incredibly disturbing lucid nightmares (unrelated to medication- not taking anything due to sleep concerns) and when I force myself awake, I can't move and only think I'm moving around. I'm fully aware it's a dream but it doesn't help at all and I think it makes it worse.

howtolucidofficial12 karma

Great question. Lots of people have what's called 'lucid nightmares' where they KNOW they're dreaming but they just can't escape, and it's like a nightmare.

I've experienced a few of these, and whenever you have a lucid nightmare or you want to stop lucid dreaming, usually the easiest way is to just close your eyes in the dream or focus on becoming MORE lucid by spinning round or doing a reality check/meditating IN the dream itself.

If you want to stop lucid dreaming in general, read this:

http://howtolucid.com/how-to-stop-lucid-dreaming/

Loomygnarly4 karma

How long can you stay lucid while dreaming?

howtolucidofficial11 karma

Realistically, a few minutes. I believe the average length of time people dream for in one go is about 9-15 minutes, depending on the sleep quality etc.

It can be less or more depending on WHEN during the night you're having the dream/lucid dream because as you get closer to waking up in the morning (early hours like 4, 5, 6AM) your REM sleep gets LONGER meaning you can potentially stay in a dream for longer.

This is why it's known as the 'sweet spot' for lucid dreaming, just before you wake up. Usually the best time is about 5AM if you normally wake up at 8-9AM.

Loomygnarly3 karma

In that case, if I sleep and wake up at 6AM and go to sleep shortly after that and I become lucid. Will I stay lucid in the dream till I wake up around 9AM?

howtolucidofficial3 karma

It's very likely, yes. That's known as the wake back to bed technique which involves exactly what you described.

I'd suggest setting alarms for every 30 minutes AFTER 6Am so that you 'dream chain' and experience multiple lucid dreams and deep normal dreams for about two hours as you hop in and out of the dream and REM sleep.

memyselfandhai2 karma

I’ve also read that people will use lucid dreaming to practice motor skills for musical performances, sports etc. Do you think it’s useful for exclusively critical thinking skills such as programming? In Peak Performance, the authors suggested (iirc), that taking time away from mentally challenging tasks actually helps one understand what they are trying to solve/learn because the brain processes it in the background. That’s why a lot of people will have breakthroughs while they’re on a walk/hike, taking a shower, etc. It seems like throwing even more effort into honing a skill might lead to over-training if you’re already spending a significant amount of waking time learning/practicing, while reserving sleep to rest the mind & “background process” the material. Thoughts?

howtolucidofficial2 karma

I see what you mean.

I think lucid dreaming is/can be most effectively used for the more physical feats like martial arts, driving, for example.

Things like you mentioned are sometimes best to leave to just 'come to you' BUT lucid dreaming can also still be used for these things as well. You could for example ASK the dream itself to solve a problem for you, and WHILE you're lucid, your subconscious mind can solve the problem for you.

This is not for beginners but it's certainly possible.

tjugeboda2 karma

How can I keep the motivation to keep trying? School has become a big distraction for having that mindset of remembering to do reality checks and remembering dreams in the morning for example. I usually can't recall dreams in the morning of school days because I feel like I don't have the time to write.

It's so hard to keep the motivation going. Especially when school comes in the way. Also, which technique is highly effective, but also doesn't make me loose lots of sleep?

howtolucidofficial2 karma

Well it depends how much you want to experience lucid dreaming really. I'd say read this post and get some inspiration about what you can DO in a lucid dream, and then go from there: http://howtolucid.com/40-things-to-do-in-a-lucid-dream/

LionIV2 karma

Hey, not sure if you're still answering questions but do you have any experience with cannabis and the way it inhibits REM sleep? I know that after heavy use, if you stop for a while, your R.E.M. Sleep essentially needs to "catch up". Just curious to see if you have any input on that.

howtolucidofficial2 karma

I certainly am! Keep them coming. Yes cannabis inhibits REM sleep but you get a rebound when you stop but it's still not suggested to smoke weed if you want to lucid dream.

The_Rolling_Take2 karma

Do you follow the works of Stephen LaBerge? Do you have any advice for someone that lucid dreams regularly for many years but can't retain full lucidity after something horrible happens, sort of like when fight or flight mode kicks in its all over?

howtolucidofficial2 karma

Yes I love his work. And I would encourage you to just keep trying and just try different techniques. A lucid nightmare can be stopped by just closing your eyes and keeping them closed

veryuniquenameindeed2 karma

Ok, so I've been having horrible dreams from a very young age, every night and I rarely- if ever wake up from them. These dreams are always different, vivid and never the same so no PTSD kind of stuff. I'm 24 now and I still haven't managed to get rid of them. I know this is kind of a stupid question but I need to ask anyway.. Why do these dreams keep haunting me every single night? And by the way, this probably sounds crazy, but I can remember every single one of them, years back. And I tend to have flashbacks when I'm under the shower, when I wash my hands or walk through doors.. Like I said, it sounds crazy.

howtolucidofficial2 karma

Although this sounds terrible, you can actually use recurring nightmares to help you lucid dream. It's one of the easiest ways to get started with lucid dreaming.

Start doing a reality check every time you experience or see something that keeps appearing in your nightmares. So say if the nightmare is getting chased by a dog, do a reality check EVERY TIME you see a dog in real life.

Pretty soon, every time you have the recurring nightmare, you'll see the dog and do a reality check, making you lucid in the dream. The nightmare will instantly stop and you can enjoy a lucid dream!

Tanjiro2 karma

Do you have any methods for retaining the images I see with my minds eye so that I can recall them and put them down on paper? I remember hearing anecdotes of artists holding objects in their hands and sitting in a chair so that when they fell asleep, the object would fall out and wake them up? I believe this was a technique Salvador Dali used. I see such amazing images from time to time but they fade from my memory so quickly. I've been practicing art techniques to give myself a better chance of rendering the images I see.

howtolucidofficial2 karma

There's not much you can do at the moment other than just remembering them and writing them down or drawing them. Hopefully in the future we'll be able to record our dreams and watch them back!

R3DViperrrr2 karma

Do you think after a lot of lucid dreaming you can mistake dreaming with reality?

howtolucidofficial2 karma

Rarely, but it's possible that if you lucid dream about 'normal' things like conversations with people you know, or walking around places you've been before doing nothing crazy, then yes you could confuse the memories.

FlynnRocks15562 karma

Would it be possible to constantly lucid dream and essentially live in that dream?

howtolucidofficial2 karma

No because lucid dreams only happen while we're asleep and during REM sleep. We can't sleep forever!

streetsy2 karma

I wrote in a journal a year ago that lucid dreaming is the next meditation which was the next yoga. Many experts and master classes are starting to pop up. How does one monetize or productize something like this?

howtolucidofficial2 karma

Well, same as almost any other market, most people provide free information and give away massive value, but then also offer slightly MORE value in the form of a more detailed product, which is sold for a given price.

People that are REALLY interested in lucid dreaming might buy a product, for example (http://howtolucid.com/30-day-lucid-bootcamp/) but others can just consume the free content like this AMA or my articles,

This way, there's something for everyone :)

Fictitiousfallacy2 karma

What would you say is one of the easiest/ simplest things you could recommend to someone to increase their chances of having a lucid dream?

howtolucidofficial2 karma

Just be more aware of yourself and what you're doing in every day life. Things like meditation and focusing on what you want in life come to mind

_Legendairy_2 karma

As a child, I remember having very vivid dreams and remembering them when I woke up, but as I've aged, I can't even seem to remember my dreams right after I wake up. Do you have any recommendations for me to be more able to remember my dreams?

howtolucidofficial3 karma

Yes for dream recall I suggest writing what you can remember down every morning and if you can't remember anything, just write 'no dreams recalled' as this trains your mind to recall dreams :)

madtraxmerno2 karma

What has been the craziest lucid dream you've had so far? Also, do you find there is a limit to things you can create? I've found people aren't hard to do, and my brain has no problem bringing me to vivid and detailed cities, but I can't seem to create a city simply by willing it. I just have to go with the flow as far as locations go. Is that a muscle that can be worked?

howtolucidofficial2 karma

My craziest lucid dream was the one in which I completely dissolved the dreaming state and transcended my consciousness (at least that's what it felt like, and I was changed for days after)

I wrote about it in detail here: http://howtolucid.com/lucid-transcendence/

zomboromcom2 karma

Hey, Stefan. Is it uncommon to find lucid dreams satisfying only in terms of immersive objects and places but not "people"? I never lose sight of being the "director" in my little play. Whereas in a normal dream I can, say, hang out with some LOTR dwarves and they seem alive and spontaneous (but I choose none of it), if I chose to do so in a lucid dream it all seems fake and forced. Any suggestions on how to get the immersiveness of a regular dream but maintain control?

howtolucidofficial3 karma

I know what you mean. Yes, try entering the lucid dream but then letting your lucidity SLIGHTLY fade by just exploring the dream and seeing where it leads. Don't expect anything specific to happen and just let the dream take you

tellMyBossHesWrong2 karma

Have you come across many nightly lucid dreamers that can go back to their same "cities/worlds" they've created?

I'm a nightly lucid dreamer and most nights I can work on my same "neighborhood" that I'm familiar with. It's not ever exactly the same, but I can try to envision my last nights dream and go back to that area. Not always, but that's a good lucid dream.

Do you have any questions for us? Anything you are still researching about?

howtolucidofficial4 karma

You can sometimes go back to the same sort of dream, but never the EXACT same dream. It will always be a little bit different, most often it will be a LOT different.

Laselkin2 karma

1) How can I know precisely when does my REM cycle happen ?

2) Can you give me some motivation tips to keep trying to LD after months of failure ?

howtolucidofficial6 karma

You can't really know about your REM cycle WHILE it's happening, as to have REM sleep you would be asleep (at least, your body would be).

The way you'd KNOW that you're in REM sleep is if you became lucid. While you're lucid, you can think to yourself 'I'm in REM sleep right now'

And yes, after months of failure, you likely just need to refresh things and try a different approach. Lucid dreaming IS easy to learn when you do the right stuff, and it's fun!

I'd suggest mixing up EVERYTHING, try new techniques, new reality checks, try sleeping in different places, even try setting random alarms throughout the night at 30 minute intervals to make SURE you catch yourself in the middle of dream cycles.

If you want to make sure you lucid dream in the next few weeks, go through this: http://howtolucid.com/30-day-lucid-bootcamp/

Laselkin1 karma

Thanks !

howtolucidofficial1 karma

Anytime :)

woodenarmchair1 karma

I have always been extremely curious about this subject. I have had a lucid dream a few times but they often feel "limited" in what I can actually do (if that makes any sense).

How can I practice the art of control in my dreams more consistently and more often?

I currently wake up between 3 and 4am six days a week for work, so it makes it difficult to dream journal. What else can I do?

howtolucidofficial1 karma

The sleep pattern you've got there makes it a bit more difficult than normal, but it's still possible! I'd suggest doing reality checks every time you wake up, and also doing the same stuff as anyone else, reality checks during the day, dream journalling if you can, and meditation either every morning, every night or both!

Fazoid1 karma

Hi Stefan! Thanks for doing this AMA, this subject is always so intriguing! Hopefully this question makes sense:

When remembering a normal dream, it seems like we're just 'along for the ride' and as such I don't feel like I had to... 'engage' in the dream.

When lucid dreaming (I've not had the luck yet - I'd love to learn though), I imagine you're deliberately thinking about what to do. So rather than just being along for the ride, you are actively engaging in your dream - if that's the case, are you getting a less restful sleep than someone who isn't lucid dreaming? Or am I thinking about it in completely the wrong way?

Edit: Grammar

howtolucidofficial2 karma

That's a good one!

No, you're not. In fact your sleep quality will be the same if not better. The only time you'll feel tired after lucid dreaming is if you used a technique that involves waking up in the middle of the night, like with the WBTB method.

BluntHunt1 karma

Is there anything one can do during the day to help manipulate having and controlling the lucid dreams more successfully?

Does periodic deep-thought meditation help initiate the theme of the lucid dream? And do any substances influence how vivid these might be?

howtolucidofficial1 karma

Yes! Meditation in the mornings, reality checks throughout the day, and every time you see something strange or unique during the day, ask yourself 'Am I dreaming right now?' and eventually you'll be more critical in your dreams also!

BluntHunt1 karma

Cool stuff. Thanks for the reply!

howtolucidofficial1 karma

You're welcome!

CJ_Productions1 karma

Sometimes when I try to lucid dream someone tries to hurt me so I try to imagine a gun in my hand so I can shoot them. The furthest I've ever gotten was shooting out of my fingertips. This isn't the first time I've found it impossible to conjure objects either. Is there a way I can improve on this?

howtolucidofficial1 karma

Creating dream objects is very easy in lucid dreams, most of the time you just need to expect them to appear and then LOOK where you want them to appear.

If that doesn't work, then try going to a place in the dream where you'd NORMALLY find the object in waking life. For example, you're looking for a gun, go to a gun shop in the street, make sense?

derekantrican1 karma

I've always heard that you can tell you're dreaming because screens (phones, TVs, etc) don't work in dreams. I've never experienced this and in fact have had dreams where I distinctly remember using my smartphone without thinking something is weird. Is there any evidence to back up why this might be a thing?

howtolucidofficial1 karma

It's not a complete 100% of the time sort of deal, but most of the time screens, text, clocks and watches appear distorted. Not all of the time though!

This is why I suggest using something like the finger-palm push as a a reality check instead of the other ones like looking at text.

Draneol41 karma

I have a dream world, where pretty much,

the places in reality - I also have a dream version of.

Is this normal? I practically have a mini dream world in my head that I can recall whenever I want. (I'm not a lucid dreamer yet)

howtolucidofficial2 karma

Yes that's normal, although most lucid dreamers just have a different dream every time. It's cool to make a place that you can keep coming back to though!

ZipZapJ1 karma

What is the coolest thing you ever did in a dream?

howtolucidofficial2 karma

It's either my flying dreams (which feel incredible) or the time I dissolved a dream scene and experienced every emotion and feeling all at once (It was intense though) I wrote about it in detail here:

http://howtolucid.com/lucid-transcendence/

SundBro1 karma

In what you have seen so far, do people's varying personalities affect how well/effective they are able to lucid dream?

ex. I have heard with hypnosis it is more effective on people with higher open-mindedness, is that something you think affects the proficiency of lucid dreaming?

howtolucidofficial2 karma

Yes, I think open mindedness is important, but with lucid dreaming believing it is possible and you CAN do it is very important as well.

If you think it's not going to work, it won't. Positive attitude and mindset is key for this!

Lauraludicrous1 karma

I believe that I have lucid dreamt in the past. My experience was a bit..weird. I would take dreams i already had and turn them into nightmares. I knew everything about the dreams and what was going to happen. It even got to the point where I would dream that I had woken up and going through my day.

What would you suggest that I could do to get back into lucid dreaming without having another horror experience?

howtolucidofficial1 karma

That sounds like a false awakening, you know where you dream about waking up and going through your morning routine, but then you're snapped back to the bed? It's very common.

I'd suggest for you to do reality checks EVERY time you wake up, and after a few days, every time you have a dream about waking up (a false awakening) you'll do a reality check and hopefully become lucid.

I've had hundreds of lucid dreams this way!

NuevaRimbaud1 karma

I really wanna try this! How much will it take to me to truly be able to do it?

howtolucidofficial2 karma

Just give it a few weeks, you'll get there! There are lots of ways you could get started, either meditation every morning and reality checks, or if you want something easier to follow, the bootcamp here:

http://howtolucid.com/30-day-lucid-bootcamp/

AesotericNevermind1 karma

1) How do you do it?

2) Does smoking weed stifle it?

howtolucidofficial1 karma

There are a lot of ways you could lucid dream. The main ways are as follows:

Meditate for at least 5 minutes every morning

Start writing your dreams down every morning, even if you don't remember much, just write 'no dreams recalled'

Learn some induction techniques like the WBTB (wake back to bed) or the MILD (Mnemonically induced lucid dreaming)

I have a very easy to follow 30 day guide showing exactly how to get started actually:

http://howtolucid.com/30-day-lucid-bootcamp/

Regarding the weed, YES it does stifle your lucid dreaming chances, massively!

Draneol41 karma

Question about my dream journal. Should I be trying to remember more details for my journal or is it fine to just write down the overall story of the dream?

howtolucidofficial3 karma

If you can remember details, write them down, if not just write the general feeling and idea of the dream. Ideally you should write as much detail as you can actually remember but if you don't have much time or you just have crazy long and detailed dreams, just summarise it and highlight the important parts!

Perkele81 karma

What is the most important factor to be a regular lucid dreamer?

I was really into lucid dreaming some years ago and had some LDs but after a while all these RCs and dream journal thing seemed like hard work so I put it aside. Now that I am interested in it again I would love to have some suggestions :)

howtolucidofficial3 karma

IMO the most important factor is all day awareness and just a general awareness of what you're doing all the time. This is massively helped by meditating.

This is because a lot of people are in sort of autopilot most of the day and don't really focus on what they're doing. Meditating fixes that, AND makes you more likely to lucid dream!

Do that, and things like reality checks and dream journals will work MUCH faster and easier than ever before

siblbombs1 karma

What are your thoughts on supplement induced lucid dreaming, eg Thomas Yuschak's work?

howtolucidofficial1 karma

I've tested lots of lucid dreaming supplements, and most of them work great, some more than others. I think even with this though, it's very important to not rely on any one supplement or device

I like to teach people to learn the fundamentals so that they can make themselves lucid dream without HAVING to rely on something else

_irregardless1 karma

Hi stefan, thanks for taking the time to do this. I've always loved dreaming and spent some time a couple years ago practicing lucid dreaming. I became pretty successful at becoming aware when I was dreaming. However, every time I became 'aware', I would enter sleep paralysis, then my dreams would turn really dark and I would panic. It led to me attempting to thrash in bed but just came out as a bunch of moaning. It started to freak my wife out, so I stopped practicing. I would love to get back into it, do you have any tips on avoiding sleep paralysis while attempting to become lucid?

howtolucidofficial1 karma

You're welcome. The thrashing around sounds like a mild sleep disorder, because normally sleep paralysis is what stops us from physically moving while we're dreaming.

I'd advise seeing a sleep expert about that before trying to lucid dream, but I'm sure it will be fine!

pm-me-foxes1 karma

Do you believe that dreams play a big part in Psychology? Why or why not?

If the answer was yes, do you think it will become a big field in the future?

howtolucidofficial2 karma

I think dreams are more important and relevant than most of the world today thinks or knows. I believe that they will become more and more important and well known in the future, yes!

Sr_Underlord1 karma

I'm not sure if this has been asked before, but can you use lucid dreaming to become more productive?

Say, can I lucid dream and be able to continue working on a project? Or look through my memories, like in a memory palace?

Just curious. Sorry. If this is more sci-fi than realistic.

howtolucidofficial2 karma

Of course! I like to use it to practice things that would normally take a long time to practice in real life, like martial arts, physical movements like rock climbing etc.

Andrei_Tale1 karma

I just had my first LD, and I noticed it felt more like I was in a memory that I could control then a completely different world, but that may just be because of my dream recall ability. My question is, how “real” can lucid dreams feel?

howtolucidofficial4 karma

They can feel VERY real. IN fact, your brain can't tell the difference between a lucid dream/normal dream and real life.

If you lucid dream about doing something like driving a car, the SAME circuits fire in your brain that would fire if you ACTUALLY drove a car.

This is how you're able to learn and improve at REAL physical skills by practicing them in lucid dreams. I passed my driving test a lot faster because I practiced in a lucid dream!

IrishMallard1 karma

What are your thoughts about sleep paralysis and what some people call a harpy when waking?

howtolucidofficial2 karma

It's real but it only feels real. It's in your mind but the experience of things watching you or being in your room while you're having sleep paralysis are VERY real! It's nothing to worry about though, and you shouldn't let it affect your lucid dreaming in a bad way

man-dog1 karma

This is a bit off topic. But in your professional and plentiful experience, do you believe there is meaning to the dreams we have and agree or disagree with the theory that dreams consist of what's on our subconscious?

You spoke earlier about some rare cases of people being addicted and wanting to lucid dream more than enjoy reality, do you think games involving Immersive play such as VR are relevant in some way?

Personally when i was younger, I could pick up games and enjoy them. Recently though games are so immersive and beautifully created to entice you where sometimes you forget you are in reality. Whats your thoughts on this common experience?

howtolucidofficial2 karma

I think VR and games that are more immersive ARE more likely to induce lucid dreams in the players, for sure.

I've just got into FPV drone flying, and I've had LOTS of lucid dreams about flying drones since putting on the drone control headset, so yes!

MonteRunTheCity1 karma

I’ve always wanted to do this ! Can you point me in the direction on how to begin ?

howtolucidofficial1 karma

Yes, I'd suggest reading up about meditation and starting to do that every morning, and then do the following things:

Do a reality check every morning (guide is in the description of this AMA)

Practice induction techniques (in description)

And go through the bootcamp which takes you by the hand and shows you how to do it every day!

http://howtolucid.com/30-day-lucid-bootcamp/

Thor_tK1 karma

How do I get a sexual lucid dream? Are there any techniques to help boost the chance of it?

howtolucidofficial1 karma

Easiest way is to just have a lucid dream and then find someone in the dream to have sex with! Seeing as all the dream characters are all parts of your mind, they'll all almost always be willing to go along with it!

SoundandFurySNothing1 karma

I have had Lucid Dreams in the past and people told me it's because I play a lot of video games so I know how to control a character. Is there any truth to this?

howtolucidofficial2 karma

Yes! video games have a huge connection to lucid dreaming and it is true that gamers are more likely to lucid dream. What sort of games do you play?

I find that games like Skyrim are the best for lucid dreaming because they seem so lifelike and you can choose where to go and what to do, as if you were in another world and in control..

JanitorBuenavista1 karma

What happens when you get drunk or high in a lucid dream?

howtolucidofficial1 karma

It just feels like it would in real life but without the nasty side effects like danger or hangovers etc!

MuhMuhRoads1 karma

Have you used lucid dreaming for anything in real life? Music, art, work et cetera?

howtolucidofficial1 karma

Yes I've used lucid dreaming to pass my driving test faster than I would have normally, and also things like compose songs, work out the answer to certain problems and even sort of 'give myself' life advice and guidance!

SoundandFurySNothing1 karma

How might one use lucid dreaming to remove fears and anxieties?

howtolucidofficial1 karma

There are lots of ways, but they mainly center around deliberately putting yourself into a situation where you're forced to deal with the fear in the lucid dream.

You then focus on telling yourself it's not real, and by practicing being around or near the fear, eventually after a number of sessions, you're just naturally less scared of it.

Yo can also ask the fear itself why it's there in your lucid dream, and you'll be able to talk to your own mind about why you're scared of a certain thing. This can help you understand and deal with it better.

leeloodvm1 karma

How can I stop lucid dreaming? It’s exhausting and causes me to wake up a lot.

howtolucidofficial1 karma

To stop lucid dreaming, I have a detailed article about it here: http://howtolucid.com/how-to-stop-lucid-dreaming/

diegofox231 karma

Do you have any opinion on the use of Melatonin or Galantamine? I use Melatonin every night and Galantamine on weekends.

howtolucidofficial1 karma

Yes, I've found that melatonin can work quite nicely but galantamine I've found to be a bit intense for my liking!

I'd suggest looking at something like Claridream (http://howtolucid.com/go/claridream) to get the color and vividness, and something like LucidEsc (You can get a discount here: http://howtolucid.com/go/lucidesc) for the lucidity and control.

PlattenG1 karma

What happens if you have a nightmare lucid dream?

howtolucidofficial3 karma

Well, nothing bad except you might wake up feeling scared or in a panic. To end a lucid nightmare, either close your eyes and keep them closed until you wake up, OR

Become more lucid by doing reality checks and constantly reminding yourself that it's all a dream!

FIFTEENMILLION1 karma

Hi, I've lucid dreamed a few times. Normally I decide that I can fly and buzz around town for a while.

After a while I get a bit sick of it and decide to come out of it. When I do so I say to myself to wake up, and I can 'feel' myself coming through the boundary. It feels really quite uncomfortable going from sleep to wake, and it takes a good few seconds in my head. Is this a normal thing to experience?

howtolucidofficial2 karma

Yea that's fairly normal. If you want it to happen faster just close your eyes in the dream. You'll normally wake up almost instantly.