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7 Steps to Start Lucid Dreaming

7 Steps to Start Lucid Dreaming

Lucid Dreaming is consciously being aware within your dream. When you are dreaming and you become conscious that you are dreaming you can start to control your dreams and the direction they go in.

Lucid dreaming can help with recurring nightmares, solving creative problems, speaking with loved ones who have passed on, anxiety, and problem solving. It can be an exhilarating experience and the feeling of euphoria after your first few lucid dreams can last for days. <!–more–>

7 Steps to Start Lucid Dreaming

1. Remember your ordinary dreams.

A lot of people say ‘I don’t dream’, everybody dreams, whilst you may not remember them you still dream. To start remembering your dreams try this simple technique.

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Each night before drifting off to sleep repeat the phrase ‘I will remember my dreams as soon as I wake up’. Say this phrase over and over until you fall asleep, after a few days you will start to remember your ordinary dreams.

2. Keep a dream journal

This can be tedious but it’s well worth the effort. Even writing a few short sentences about your dream is enough. This will get you into the habit of remembering your ordinary dreams and to start looking for dream signs within your dreams. It can also be a tool to analyze your thought processes.

3. Pick out dream signs

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A lot of your ordinary dreams will have objects or people in them that could act as a cue to you waking up in your dreams. For example if you regularly talk to ‘Elvis’ in your ordinary dreams this is an obvious dream sign and can be used to ask yourself if you are dreaming because you know Elvis is dead.

4. Notice your waking world

To be conscious in your dream world means you have to be conscious in your waking world. That might sound crazy, as you are conscious when you are awake. However what I mean is ‘consciously focused’ . For example you are consciously focused when learning a new task, you are thinking about every action you are taking to get the right steps. When you have learned the new task you no longer have to focus as intently as you did when learning it. Being consciously focused means looking around you and saying what you see, feel, hear, smell and touch and voicing it. This has the added benefit of being in the moment and can help you to inner calmness, it’s almost zen like.

If you start to consciously focus on the world around you, you will carry this over into the dream world.

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5. Ask yourself; ‘Am I dreaming?’

Ask yourself just now ‘Am I dreaming?’. Your obvious answer is to say no, of course you are not dreaming. How do you know? Don’t just say; because I know, try and think about why you are not dreaming. For example you could say if I was dreaming I would be able to fly. When you are dreaming you cannot read text for longer than a few seconds, so try reading text to prove to yourself you are not dreaming.

This again will carry over into your dreaming world and you will start asking the same questions in your dreams which can turn into a lucid dream.

6. Your first lucid dream

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Many people have their first lucid dream simply by reading about it. You might find that you become over-excited and lose the lucid dream however, you first lucid dream will be remembered for years to come.

7. Staying lucid

I have used different techniques to stay within a dream however by far the best one is calming myself down with self talk and dream spinning. If you find that you are losing your lucidity you can talk to yourself to calm yourself down and just start noticing the things around you in your dream.

Dream spinning is when you feel you are losing control of your dream you mentally spin like a tornado to stay within your dream. This is focusing the mind on staying lucid.

Have you ever had a lucid dream? If you have why not tell us about it by leaving a comment.

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Last Updated on September 10, 2019

How to Master the Art of Prioritization

How to Master the Art of Prioritization

Do you know that prioritization is an art? It is an art that will lead you to success in whatever area that matters to you.

By prioritization, I’m not talking so much about assigning tasks, but deciding which will take chronological priority in your day—figuring out which tasks you’ll do first, and which you’ll leave to last.

Effective Prioritization

There are two approaches to “prioritizing” the tasks in your to-do list that I see fairly often:

Approach #1 Tackling the Biggest Tasks First and Getting Them out of the Way

The idea is that by tackling them first, you deal with the pressure and anxiety that builds up and prevents you from getting anything done—whether we’re talking about big or small tasks. Leo Babauta is a proponent of this Big Rocks method.[1]

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Approach #2 Tackling the Tasks You Can Get Done Quickly and Easily, with Minimal Effort

Proponents of this method believe that by tackling the small fries first, you’ll have less noise distracting you from the periphery of your consciousness.

If you believe in getting your email read and responded to, making phone calls and getting Google Reader zeroed before you dive into the high-yield work, you’re a proponent of this method. I suppose you could say Getting Things Done (GTD) encourages this sort of method, since the methodology advises followers to tackle tasks that can be completed within two minutes, right there and then.

Figure out Your Approach for Prioritization

My own approach is perhaps a mixture of the two.

I’ll write out my daily task list and draw little priority stars next to the three items I need to get done that day. They don’t need to be big tasks, but nine times out of ten, they are.

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Smaller tasks are rarely important enough to warrant a star in the first place; I can always get away without even checking my inbox until the next day if I’m swamped, and the people who need to get in touch with me super quickly know how.

But I’m not recommending my system of prioritization to you. I’m also not saying that mine is better than Leo’s Big Rocks method, and I’m not saying it’s better than the “if it can be done quickly, do it first” method either.

The thing with prioritization is that knowing when to do what relies very much on you and the way you work. Some people need to get some small work done to find a sense of accomplishment and clarity that allows them to focus on and tackle bigger items. Others need to deal with the big tasks or they’ll get caught up in the busywork of the day and never move on, especially when that Google Reader count just refuses to get zeroed (personally, I recommend the Mark All As Read button—I use it most days!).

I’m in between, because my own patterns can be all over the place. Some days I will be ready to rip into massive projects at 7AM. Other times I’ll feel the need to zero every inbox I have and clean up the papers on my desk before I can focus on anything serious. I also know that my peak, efficient working time doesn’t come at 11AM or 3PM or some specific time like it does for many people, but I have several peaks divided by a few troughs. I can feel what’s coming on when and try to keep my schedule liquid enough that I can adapt.

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That’s why I use a starred task list system rather than a scheduled task list. It allows me to trust myself (something that I suppose takes a certain amount of discipline) and achieve peak efficiency by blowing with the winds. If I fight the peaks and troughs, I’ll get less done; but if I do certain kinds of work in each period of the day as they come, I’ll get more done than most others in a similar line of work.

You may not be able to trust yourself to that extent without falling into the busywork trap. You may not be able to tackle big tasks first thing in the morning without feeling like you’re pushing against an invisible brick wall that won’t budge. You might not be able to deal with small tasks before the big tasks without feeling pangs of guilt and urgency.

My point is:

The prioritization systems themselves don’t matter. They’re all pretty good for a group of people, not least of all to the people who espouse them because they use them and find them effective.

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What matters is that you don’t fall for one set of dogma (and I’m not saying Leo Babauta or David Allen preach these things as dogma, but sometimes their proponents do) until you’ve tried the systems extensively, and found which method of chronological prioritization works for you.

And if the system you already use works great, then there’s no need to bother trying others—in the world of personal productivity, it’s too easy to mess with something that works and find yourself unable to get back into your former groove.

“If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

In truth, this principle applies to all sorts of personal productivity issues, though it’s important to know which issues it applies to.

If you thought multitasking worked well for you each day and I’d have to contend that you are wrong—multitasking is a universal myth in my books! But if you find yourself prioritizing tasks that never get done, you might need to reconsider which of the above approaches you’re using and change to a system that is more personally effective.

More About Prioritization & Time Management

Featured photo credit: Sabri Tuzcu via unsplash.com

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