It is definitely not simple to overcome or completely get rid of those flashbacks or visual scenes that compel you to recall bad experiences. But as they say, that time heals everything, so gradually, it will help you to cope with the severe anxiety arising due to these episodes. However, other than time, there is another very effective way to deal with this – you could induce a lucid dream!
So, if you have been trying to overcome some past trauma and want to induce a lucid dream to heal, read this article to know more.
Lucid dreams have proved to be extremely powerful. And researches have shown that having a lucid dream can help you attain a profound level of calmness and spirituality. If you think about it deeply, when you have lucid dreams, you are in a complete state of control, awareness, and consciousness, despite the fact that you are asleep.
So, if you can control your mind through a lucid dream, it feels surreal yet very real to see the dream having a deep impact on your body. This way, you can heal from a wide range of mental, emotional, and psychological issues that have been historically hard for you to overcome.
Lucid dreams make you mindful, help you refocus your attention, and alleviate your healing process, both physically as well as emotionally.
Healing and mitigating trauma are one of the most challenging times of life in general. So, it all begins with razor-sharp focus! Being scatterbrained is not an option here.
Acting out or directing an entire scene of your choice in your lucid dream, making sense of it, controlling it at each and every step, taking the story ahead as you desire to free yourself from previously witnessed damage, and being totally aware of all this while you are sleeping is no joke. And it surely isn’t easy if you can’t have your mind stay still and move away from a bunch of different uncalled-for thoughts scattered around.
In short, everything seems blurry to a lousy, fuzzy mind and can hamper your ability to induce a lucid dream. So, it is important to be well-focused to start lucid dreaming, especially to have clear dreams that help you with holistic healing.
The process of healing using lucid dreams takes time, but it is worth it. Think of this like a gradual brain cleanse where you eventually become successful in wiping out the bad memories once and for all. The best part is that you get to explore your ideal, utopian world of dreams in a way that feels absolutely real.
This way, your brain is detoxed, your dreams are satisfying, your sleep is fulfilling, your exhausted body gets the much-needed rest, and you are transported to a far better mental state where you are extremely relaxed. Isn’t this what healing is about, healing on the inside as well as on the outside!
If you are experiencing nightmares due to PTSD and dream about past events repeatedly, a lucid dream is your way to go. These nightmares not only impact your sleep negatively but also disrupts your daily functioning. This is because when you experience them while sleeping, they are non-lucid, and you have no control over them or your actions in such bad dreams.
So, you feel that you are losing grip over life as you are not aware of these dreams while you are dreaming about them. But once you get into the habit of lucid dreaming, you are better equipped to deal with your nightmares as you can effortlessly differentiate between dreams and reality. So, even before you wake up, you know that it was all a dream, and this eventually paves the way for your healing process.
For example, if you happen to see one of your dead loved ones in your dreams and grieve all the time when you meet them in your non-lucid dreams, you feel sad about it as you are missing them and in a state of shock and grief even after you wake up.
In order to heal from this, if you train yourself to induce lucid dreams wherein you use your subconscious mind to move on, improve your bond with them and make it even better, you will slowly recover from the loss of your loved ones and reach an emotional state where you are stable and satisfied.
So, it is recommended to take the effort to truly connect with your bad dreams and evaluate them through your subconscious. In order to achieve this, you need to inculcate a good nighttime sleeping routine.
Another important thing is to constantly get better at remembering your dreams, both good and bad. Even if you feel extreme stress by recalling a tragic event, you must do it as that is a prerequisite for lucid dreaming. Remember, this practice will help you get rid of the trauma emerging from the bad event in the end. So enhancing its recall to replicate it in your lucid dreams is a necessary evil.
You first need to get the basics right! Fix your bedtime routine, stay calm, meditate as it helps you focus better, and take your digital detox very seriously.
Note – You might need to discuss this with your therapist or doctor before you start lucid dreaming for healing if you have the habit of sleepwalking.
Here are some techniques you could use to induce lucid dreams that heal:
The first method involves testing reality. This means you need to make a habit of questioning whether or not you are dreaming while you are asleep. These tests include actions such as passing your fingers through your palm, reading a piece of written text, holding your nose to prevent yourself from breathing, etc.
However, these actions that help you perform a reality check must be practiced regularly so that you get used to executing them subconsciously and eventually in your dreams to figure out the difference between dream and reality.
Another method or technique that helps you induce a lucid dream for better healing is the MILD technique also called the Mnemonic Induction Lucid Dream. This should ideally be done after you wake up briefly, post a good five to six hours of comfortable sleep. This technique involves practicing and visualizing lucid dreams wherein you relentlessly repeat chants that reflect your motive for lucid dreaming. It primarily helps you to keep in mind that you are dreaming.
The MILD technique usually goes hand-in-hand with the WBTB, that is Wake Back to Bed method. In the WBTB technique, you are advised to wake up a few hours before your usual time to wake up and then go back to sleep after a brief period of a few minutes. This short period of time when you are awake helps you with activating certain key areas of your brain that are responsible for inducing smooth lucid dreams as you go back to REM sleep, where controlled dreaming happens. Dismissing your alarms at different times temporarily before finally waking up also helps with lucid dreaming.
Dream Initiated Lucid Dreaming(DILD) is another commonly used technique for inducing a lucid dream for healing. You can use this method in the middle of your dreams, and there are three ways to about this. The first is object recognition. This means you spot a specific object in your dream that subconsciously conveys to you that whatever you seem to be experiencing is a dream, thus making you aware and triggering a lucid dream.
The second sub-technique used in DILD is called TCR, and it stands for Text Change Recognition. You will always see continuously changing the text in a dream, even if the original text is actually static. Once you see the wobbly text, it immediately indicates to your subconscious mind that you are in a dream.
For example, if you wear a watch in real life and while dreaming, you take a look at your watch to check the time like how you normally would. But if you happen to check the time again, it would never be the same. This is when you become aware that you are dreaming. The third sub technique involves seeing irrational things and encountering something abstract that you would never ever experience or practically witness in reality. For example, dreaming about certain mythical creatures such as centaurs or unicorns.
There is nothing more rewarding than conquering your fears, putting your traumatic past behind, and healing both physical and mental scars for good. So, you could begin your healing journey today with consistent lucid dreaming.
You may not be able to nail the technique right away, but the entire process of mastering how to induce a lucid dream for healing purposes is very therapeutic. And it can also help you become more mindful in everyday life as you dream more vividly, rediscover yourself, observe your surroundings more clearly and thus connect better with reality too.