Lucid dreaming as a practice has a lot to do with mindfulness. No matter which techniques or approaches you use, increasing your ability to be mindful can only help you out.
However, the opposite is true as well. Working with your dreams can help to bring your mindfulness practice up to a whole new level. If you’re in favor of mindful living while you’re awake, then the natural extension of that is to learn to become mindful sometimes while you’re sleeping.
Finding the Right Mindfulness Level for You
Each individual person in the world is different. They each have different personalities, temperaments and lifestyles. The right level of mindfulness for you as an individual will be different than someone else. Because of this, you have to let your spiritual mind, or unconscious mind (whichever phrase you feel better about) help you to find the right balance.
Our suggestion for how to go about finding this balance is by picking out one mindfulness challenge at a time. Instead of trying to turn your entire life into this thing where you have to stay hyper-focused on being mindful all the time, you can pick one area of your life where you try to be mindful. This avoids the stress of trying to force yourself to be in that state of mind all the time. However, it can still have effects that carry over into your entire life in general.
Lucid Dreaming: A Strong Mindfulness Challenge
If you’re looking for a mindfulness challenge that can really make you feel like you’re making progress, then lucid dreaming is a good place to look. It can seem a bit intimidating at first as a concept. However, it’s not very difficult to get started, and it’s a great way to do mindfulness work without having to stress yourself out over trying too hard.
It also has an interesting effect on the rest of your life. When you’re aware of the differences between how things work in a dream and how they work when you’re awake, you can take notice of details that you may have otherwise missed. You can also find yourself more aware of your surroundings, which is something that a lot of people seek to work on specifically with their mindfulness practice.
Once you’re skilled at getting into lucid dreams in the first place, you can take it to the next level. For example, you can change things in your dreams like trying to make them appear only in black and white.
Making the Spiritual Mind Stronger
A lot of people incorporate mindful living practices in an effort to get better in tune with their inner selves. Because your dreams are full of symbolism and narrative about what’s going on internally, it’s hard to imagine a better place to investigate those things.
Mindful dreaming also puts you in a position to better remember the things that are happening in your dreams in the first place. The biggest obstacle people have to doing dream work is often that they can’t remember what happened. A big part of this is the lack of mindfulness happening within the dream itself.
It’s like anything else that you don’t pay attention to. It’s really difficult to remember the details of things that are in the side view while you’re driving down the street, for example. Your brain is taking in such a huge amount of information, and you can’t focus on it all, so you have to select what to focus on and what to largely ignore.
Your brain chooses to ignore a tremendous amount of what happens in your dreams. However, if you master mindfulness within those atypical circumstances that you experience in your dreams, then you have a much better chance of remembering them. The more you can remember from your dreams, the more you’ll be able to think about them later, analyze them and interpret them.
Why Mindfulness and Lucid Dreaming Go Hand-in-hand
It doesn’t matter if you’re brand new to mindfulness or if you’ve been working on it for decades. You know that you can always get better, and there are always incremental steps you can take to improve over time. When you find a brand new area to improve in, that’s when you usually get a spurt of results in a short period of time.
This is the case for a lot of people who start into lucid dreaming. If you use it as a tool for walking along the path of right mindfulness, then you can often make a lot of progress without that much waiting.
Now don’t get us wrong; getting used to lucid dreaming and learning the techniques for it can take some time. However, it’s not nearly as difficult or as involved as most people tend to believe. There are a lot of misconceptions about it, and one of those is that it’s outside of the reach of most people. That’s simply not the case, and following a basic set of techniques can help you extend your mindfulness practice at the same time.
Jesse G. is a long-time fan of the esoteric in all of its forms and its effects on performance, happiness and stress in a variety of people. His work centers primarily around allowing people to use a variety of areas to figure out what works best for them as individuals.