Are you able to get lucid in your dream, immediately get excited at the infinite possibilities, but then the dream fades very quickly, and you wake up? It is very common, especially for beginners, for the lucid dream to be very short or unstable. Luckily, there are many ways to gain control over the dream, increase lucidity, and remain in the dream for longer periods of time. This article will explain exactly what to do as soon as you become lucid in order to stabilize your lucid dreams and extend them - perhaps for as long as an hour!
Becoming consciously aware of the dream for the first time, especially after many attempts to become lucid, can cause a rush of adrenaline and excitement. The surge of emotions causes the dream to weaken and fade away. Perhaps you rushed to try cool lucid dream tricks and immediately lost lucidity, resorting back to a normal dream. Here are a few of the best ways to stabilize the dream immediately after becoming lucid.
One way to avoid getting too excited, is to expect to get lucid by having a plan in mind of your dream goals. Why do you want to get lucid? What will you do while lucid? While deciding your dream goals, practice feeling lucid to set the stage for a lucid dream.
Imagine yourself in your lucid dream, how do you feel, what do you want to do? Imagine yourself doing a reality check, realizing that you’re dreaming, and staying calm. Doing this will help you be mentally prepared to stabilize your dream space because you won't be stressed about trying to decide what to do.
The best thing you can do once you become lucid is stay calm. Before rushing to try all your dream goals, take a deep breath and look around. Take a second to stay calm and stabilize your emotions, and even feel gratitude for becoming lucid.
While lucid dreaming, we tend to exert our ego into the dream instead of truly observing and appreciating what the dream content has to show us. If we stay calm, we stabilize the dream and allow it to continue before we immediately act on impulses to try to control it.
To get the most out of the dream, try to play along while lucid and go with the flow of the dream. Instead of trying to control or change it, truly participate as a conscious observer and see what the dream presents without your intervention. Although, it is fun to practice superpowers, fly around, or talk to your ancestors too. The possibilities are truly infinite.
To stabilize the dream, one of the most effective methods is to bring your awareness to your senses: touch, taste, smell, hearing & vision. Some things you can do to stabilize using your senses are rub your hands together, study them in detail, lick the concrete, or feel any textures around you with full mindful awareness. Research has found that mindful movement inside lucid dreams stimulate the conscious brain. It draws a higher awareness to your dream body, grounding your consciousness inside the dream.
Focusing on textures around you is a great way to do this, while also staying calm and making the dream more vivid. Many lucid dreamers, including Stephen Laberg, also swear by the spinning around method. Try spinning around in circles to increase stability within your dream body or change the scene of the dream. Remember, different things work for different dreamers, so experiment and find what works for you.
One of the best ways to stay lucid, is to constantly remind yourself that you’re lucid as the dream progresses. Once you have a long lucid dream, it may become harder to remember every detail. A good way to stay lucid, while also improving dream recall is to mentally replay the dream narrative as you progress through the dream.
Once your lucid dream has many scenes and feels more than just a few minutes long, use keywords to remember important people, places, objects, and emotions when you wake up. Mentally repeat the keywords to yourself while lucid, so you can remember as much as possible when it comes time to record your dream.
Many lucid dream experts suggest a variety of dream commands to gain clarity and control within the dream. Shouting a request into the dreamscape can produce interesting results.
You can make up your own, but some examples of common dream commands are “Clarity now!” (to increase vividness), “Please show me a dream guide!”, “Show me something I need to work on”, “When I open this door, I will be in Egypt!”, or whatever magic spell you can come up with. It is important that you are 1000% confident that the dream will give you what you ask for. Remember, it is your own subconscious that you are working with here, so be patient and compassionate.
While lucid, it is said we can usually control the ship, but not the sea. In other words, don’t get frustrated if the dream isn’t quite responding how you intended. For example, if you want to summon up a celebrity, or someone you know, you may try calling for them, only to see a random person, or maybe nothing at all happens.
Try opening doors or turning around with full knowledge that the person you want to summon will be there. You can also pull things out of your pocket or try to make a magic wand. When it comes to dream commands, be fully confident that you can change things within the dream. Any doubt that you have, will manifest itself. Whimpy requests, cause whimpy results.
Confidence is key while trying to control the dream. Think outside the box and try to get creative by experimenting with different ways of altering the dream. Have fun with it, and don’t get upset if the dream reacts in a completely random way. When faced with the unexpected, roll with it, and simply try something else. Having rigid expectations can limit the possibilities of what we can create within the dream.
The characters in a dream are generally a representation of your subconscious mind. How you treat them has an impact on not only your dreamscape, but on your psyche as well. If you try to murder them or cause harm, the content of your dream will reflect that negative energy. It is better to treat everyone with compassion and patience while lucid. Try asking them fun questions or explore the dream world with them.
Many lucid dreamers get the urge to try to convince every dream character that they exist within a dream. It is very common that the characters try to preserve the illusion, don’t believe you, or even get frustrated with this claim. Many times, they may try to wake you up once you start telling them that it's all a dream. After all, we would also find it odd if someone were to run around insisting that our reality is fake. Instead of trying to disprove the illusion, just enjoy the dream and get the most out of it.
If your dream starts to weaken, don’t lose hope too quickly, because many times you can pull yourself back into the dream once it starts to fade. The first sign of a fading dream is blurriness, loss of vision, faded colors, and darkness.
Try focusing on your hands, and if you still see anything, whether it's a faded finger or even total blackness, you are still dreaming, so remind yourself of that. Use all your mental energy to pull yourself back into a dream with full confidence.
Instead of assuming you will wake up, assume that the dream is just changing into a new scene. Remember your favorite reality check and dream stabilization techniques and focus on anything that is still visible in that moment.
With confidence, consistency and practice, you can become a a more skilled lucid dreamer. Sensations in a dream can be just as realistic and vivid as waking life sensations. Focusing on your senses in a dream is a good way to stimulate your brain function during REM sleep and enhance the dream. Practice until you find a technique that works best for you. Resisting and doubting yourself will only hinder you. Keep an open mind and be confident in your abilities.
Sweet dreams, onenironaut!
LaBerge, Stephen, and Howard Rheingold. Exploring the World of Lucid Dreaming. 4/27/94 edition, Ballantine Books, 1991.