lucid dreaming

after 50 or so failed attempts — since I started keeping track — I've had 3 successes this week, 2 of which were this morning.

some notes:
  • all of these successes take the form of me counting while also letting my mind wander, but keeping a train of thought focussed on counting as a way of sort of staying awake, and at some point I fall asleep, enter a dream, and then realize I'm in a dream. So, in a sense, they're all failures of the WILD technique, since I'm not actually aware of the transition from awakeness into dreamness, but I call them successes because they happened as a result of attempting a WILD.
  • in previous attempts, I put a lot of effort into relaxing my body, so much that sometimes my arm would fall asleep, which was quite painful, and sometimes I even tried to press on after my arm fell asleep in case that was meant to happen.. however, I've never succeeded when a body part fell asleep, and I've had now several successes without even trying to relax too much, but rather focussing on my imagination, and letting it wander as it does before falling asleep..
  • I think the most crucial point may be maintaining an intent to wake up in the dream, rather than the counting..
  • In the dreams, I notice that some things are very realistic, and some things are like computer graphics
  • I can feel things in the dreams, and I can hear things, including talking, and people will respond if I ask them things. I can also see colors, but I'm not sure I've smelt or tasted anything.
  • I can control the dreams in the sense that if I want something to happen, something more-or-less like that will happen pretty soon thereafter
  • Sometimes my minds eye is in my body, and sometimes I have no body, or I'm outside it
  • although I'm pretty darn conscious in a lucid dream, I feel like there is still a difference — my current guess, though I haven't remembered inside a dream to test this, is that whereas I usually have a sort of separation between my mental world and the physical world, inside a lucid dream, I don't.. so I can't really think things through before making decisions, at least, not in the same way.. I can think a little bit.. I'll need to try having a visual thought that is not manifested in the dream world, and see if I can..
  • I'm not sure what wakes me up from the lucid dreams — I know sometimes I've purposely tried to wake up from them, but other times, I want to maintain the dream, but fail, and I'm not sure why
  • often when I think I've woken up from a lucid dream, I haven't actually — I'm in another dream but don't realize it
some notes about the dreams themselves:
  • I recall talking to my mom and sister, and then walking to go outside, but when I got to the door, some animals — a cat and a dog — wanted to go outside too, and I let them go ahead of me. While outside, I recall looking at some gnarly part of a tree, and it seemed quite realistic and 3d. Then I walked to the glass wall of the greenhouse I was apparently in and touched the glass, and I felt something poking me from behind, like a plant, and decided there was a person there instead, who turned out to be my sister
  • I was at my grandmas house, and remember thinking "this is too realistic, this can't possibly be a dream", but then tested whether it was a dream by checking how well gravity worked, and I noticed I could float a bit, which made me realize it was a dream.. I looked around a bit, and then woke up
  • I don't remember how this one started, but I remember looking at the moon, and deciding to go to it, and I was flying toward the moon, and it was getting very big, but I noticed at some point that my mind couldn't fill in the details, sortof like zooming in too much in an image, and I decided to fly back to earth, and I remember flying toward Arizona, and I knew where Arizona was, but as I flew closer, I didn't know exactly where Phoenix was, so my mind sortof skipped a bit of the transition and I landed, but when I landed, everything was textured, like a computer, being flat, and I was walking on a flat textured surface, and I decided I wanted it to be non-textured and more normal, and it became so, but I "woke up" after that.. And I was sitting at a poker table, and it was my turn, and I didn't remembering going there, so I asked with some concern "how long have I been here?", and another player said "about 15 minutes", and I asked "is this my first hand?".. I'm not sure what they said, but I went on to say "I don't remember coming here, I don't remember anything up till just now". they didn't seem as concerned as myself, but it seemed so real that I was pretty sure I wasn't dreaming, but I thought I'd take a look at my cards which might reveal if I was dreaming if they were too extreme, and I did have 2 kings, 2 queens and an ace, which is a moderately extreme hand, and also not a Texas hold'em hand, which is what I thought I was playing initially, but neither of these things clued me into the fact that I was dreaming. I gave the dealer my ace, hoping for another queen or king, and I could see the top card he gave me was a queen, but he gave me five cards total, which I didn't understand, and the game kind of veered away from actual poker from there, but I never realized it was a dream until I woke up for real (assuming that I am awake ;)

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