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February 09, 2007

An Intro to Dreaming (Part III: MILD + WBTB)

Posted in: dreaming,dreaming techniques,guide to lucid dreaming,resources

Welcome to part III in the introduction the lucid dreaming series. Now that we’ve covered the very basics of dreaming, we’ll move on to actual techniques. Since this course is meant to go from basic to advanced, we’ll start with one of the simpler techniques, WBTB (Wake Back To Bed) combined with a simplified version of MILD (Mnemonic Induced Lucid Dream) .

WBTB

Waking up a certain amount of time into your sleep cycle.

This is a simple, powerful, and easy to accomplish technique for increasing the chance of lucid dreaming. What’s the catch? You have to wake up in the middle of the night. WBTB is meant to awaken your conscious mind close to your next REM cycle, so that you can use another technique to reach a lucid dream. The usual time to wake up after you go to sleep is 5 hours. After waking up, you stay up for a little while, or a long while, depending on who you ask. For our purposes, we’ll use a short while. Stay awake for about 10 to 15 minutes, and read something about lucid dreaming, or something to keep you thinking about lucid dreaming. You then perform the technique to induce a lucid dream as you’re going to sleep.

MILD (Simplified)
Repeating an affirmation to yourself as you fall asleep.

This technique was originally created by Stephen LaBerge, and was much more complex then what we are going to be using. I have taken one of the more important parts of it for use with WBTB. This simple component is repeating affirmations to yourself as you fall asleep. Just keep repeating something like “I realize I am dreaming” “I will realize when I am dreaming” or “I recognize when I am dreaming.” You could also go the more direct route and say something like “I will perform a reality check in 20 minutes” or perhaps “I will be in a dream in 20 minutes.” These are just suggestions, feel free to come up with your own. Now, as you are falling asleep, repeat the phrase of your choice. Focus on that phrase, and try and keep it as your main focus. Do this for 10 minutes, or until you fall asleep. Make sure that you aren’t concentrating too hard so that you keep yourself wide awake. The goal is too fall asleep with this phrase repeating in your head so that your subconscious will perform it.

The Combined Technique
Putting WBTB and MILD together.

Set your alarm for 5 hours from when you think you’ll fall asleep. When it goes off, try and let your body stay asleep. Get up and try and get your mind active and focused on the goal of lucid dreaming. You might read something on a lucid dreaming forum, a book about lucid dreaming, or anything that is related to dreaming and that will wake up your mind. Some people do math problems to wake up the analytical side of their brain. Do this for around 10-15 minutes or until you feel sufficiently awakened, then go back to bed and do MILD.

Why This Works

An explanation of why this is effective.

These two techniques are fairly easy to accomplish, with a little willpower. WBTB isn’t really a technique in itself, it is more like a boost for any other technique. It will increase your chances of whatever you are doing by a significant amount. The reason behind this is the WBTB technique wakes you up in a defined part of your sleep cycle, right before you’re about to hit the best REM sleep. Since you are now conscious, the chances of becoming lucid are increased, as your conscious mind won’t be as asleep as it normally would have been. Combined with a simplified version of MILD, you have a very effective technique. The reason MILD is more effective with WBTB is because whatever you were just running through your head is more likely to be still in your head when you hit REM, because you were so close in the first place. The ideal application of this technique would have you falling asleep in about 10-15 minutes after you first started MILD.

Points to reiterate

Realize that this will probably take a few tries, and will probably leave you a little groggy. You will probably want to only preform this when you have some extra time in the morning, or aren’t rushed.

That’s it for our first actual technique. I hope you find it useful. If you’re just joining us, the start of the course is here, here is part I, and the part prior to this one is here in part II. I hope to see everybody in part IV.

You can always email me if you have questions regarding these techniques. Feel free to leave a comment as well.

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-Hatter

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