When you first hear about lucid dreaming the possibilities can seem incredibly exciting. But, with so many people complaining that they can’t lucid dream you may be wondering if this is a skill that you must be born with. Likewise, you may wonder if only certain people can learn to lucid dream. So, is it only available to a small number of people or can everyone lucid dream?
Everyone has the ability to lucid dream. Some people can lucid dream naturally. Everyone else must learn the skill. There are varied techniques that can be used to induce lucid dreams. It is a matter of using a systematic approach to find the one that works for you.
Lucid dreaming is very common
It is a misconception that only a small group of people experience lucid dreaming. This could not be further from the truth.
Although online forums are filled with threads about lucid dreaming being difficult these should not be viewed as normal lucid dreaming experiences. What’s more, lucid dreams are not nearly as rare as most people believe they are. They are not some elusive thing that only a small group of people are capable of experiencing.
It is true though, that only a small percentage of the population will experience spontaneous and natural lucid dreams regularly and consistently. Some people are simply hardwired to lucid dream. But, lucid dreaming is more common than most people think.
Are you aware that a huge percentage of the population will experience at least one lucid dream in their life. It is just in most cases people do not remember having a lucid dream forgetting them just as easily as they forget their normal dreams.
It is estimated that around 55% of the population will experience at least one lucid dream in the course of their lifetime. The number could actually be much higher because as most people forget they had a lucid dream upon waking, this can askew the percentages.
Being able to remember your dreams is such an important part of learning to lucid dream that most lucid dreaming techniques involve keep a dream diary.
The good news is that these statistics tell us a very positive story about lucid dreaming. They tell us that being able to lucid dream does not involve some elusive ability that only a small amount of people are born with. But the stats go even further than that. As we will see later most of 19% – 37% of the population who experience regular and consistent lucid dreams, are in fact people who trained themselves to do it and are not natural lucid dreamers.
This last statistic highlights that lucid dreaming is not a hard to master skill. Up to 37% of the population can lucid dream regularly and they were taught how to do it.
If they could learn how to do it, so can you!
Everyone can lucid dream
The truth is simple: everyone can learn how to lucid dream and they can learn how to do it regularly. Some people just take longer to acquire the skill than others.
Studies have shown that although the brain activity that occurs in a lucid dream differs from the brain activity that occurs in a normal standard dream, this activity is in no way abnormal. In fact, the brain is displaying the same functions in a lucid dream that it does during waking consciousness when we are more aware and conscious of our surroundings than usual.
In other words, when you lucid dream the same areas of the brain are lit up as those that are lit up in the waking state when you are really focused on what you are doing with heightened awareness. For instance, when you are learning a new skill or performing a complicated task that requires your entire focus and concentration. In this state you have heightened awareness, unlike the unconscious state and the autopilot state you find yourself in when you are daydreaming while doing some monotonous, repetitive task. This is why many lucid dreamers display smarter characteristics than non-lucid-dreamers – including those who trained themselves to lucid dream.
Because the brain activity that occurs during lucid dreaming is the same as the brain activity that you will normally display at certain points during your normal waking day, this clearly shows that you have the capability to lucid dream. Lucid dreamers are not special nor are they specially gifted. They have just learned to alter their brain activity when they dream. Anyone who does not have a brain disability can do it as well.
If you can function normally in the waking world then you can learn how to lucid dream.
Natural lucid dreamers vs everyone else
Natural or spontaneous lucid dreamers are hardwired to lucid dream due to the way they process information from the world when they are awake. I cover this in the article what causes lucid dreaming and you should read that if the mechanics of lucid dreaming interests you.
From the estimated 19% – 37% of the population who experience regular lucid dreams only a small fraction of them are natural lucid dreamers. An even smaller number experience lucid dreams every night.
Many of these natural and daily lucid dreamers do not want to lucid dream every night because it disrupts their sleep patterns due to the fact that they are untrained and do not have full control over the dreamworld. Some even experience sleep paralysis – again because they have not trained themselves to deal with this nor been trained to stop lucid dreaming whenever they want.
What’s more a lot of natural lucid dreamers do not always have full control over their dreamworlds and can only exert control over their own actions within their lucid dreams. How can they not control their dreams when they are lucid dreaming? Because not all lucid dreams are controlled dreams.
As I highlighted in this article there are actually 2 basic types of lucid dreams.
The 2 basic types of lucid dreams are:
- Uncontrolled lucid dreams.
- Controlled lucid dreams.
Although both these types of lucid dream have the same feel and texture, we experience them in very different ways.
How the dreamer interacts with an uncontrolled lucid dream is very different from how they interact with a controlled lucid dream.
These 2 types of lucid dreams are exactly how their names suggest they are.
In the first type the dreamer is consciously aware and in a very vivid and lifelike environment but finds that they can only exert control over themselves and their own actions. They have no control over the rest of the dream or anything in it.
A person in a controlled lucid dream will have a varying degree of control over the entire dreamworld that ranges from control over the basic scene and storyline as well as themselves, to full-on omnipotent power over the entire dreamworld and everything in it. The degree of control a lucid dreamer has over a lucid dream will depend on their training and experience.
With the correct training, and help from other lucid dreamers, it is possible to advance quickly to masterful lucid dreaming levels, but keep in mind that experience is also necessary to hone your night skills and get used to your own dream controls. without proper training it is all too easy to perfect some lucid dreaming skills yet fall short on others. For example, some lucid dreamers can do all sorts of magical and amazing things in their lucid dreams yet hit a stumbling block when it comes to flying.
The truth is that you can do anything in a lucid dream provided you have the right training and consistently practise your art while pushing back your own boundaries. You are only limited by your own imagination.
This is where natural lucid dreamers and trained lucid dreamers often differ. Trained lucid dreamers usually have much more control over their dreams than natural lucid dreamers do. And, as I highlighted already, natural lucid dreamers are more prone to have completely uncontrolled lucid dreams while trained lucid dreamers can change an uncontrolled lucid dream to a controlled one through the use of some advanced techniques.
The vast majority of lucid dreamers are trained lucid dreamers. Most of these people have not only trained themselves to become lucid in their dreams but they are also trained to use techniques for advanced dream control.
Lucid dreaming training, like this, not only teaches you to become lucid but guides you to improve your overall dream control.
How to lucid dream
Always keep in mind that you can learn to lucid dream.
There are various lucid dreaming techniques that are designed to induce lucidity. These techniques are very powerful and you will find that at least one of them will work for you if you are diligent in your use of them.
What you must do is use one technique only for at least one week, 7 days, before moving on to the next technique. If you do not lucid dream within 7 days of using a particular technique you should move on to a different one.
Do not swap and change between techniques during this 7 day period. Stick to one technique until you know it doesn’t work for you. As Soichiro Honda (Honda motor company) said, “success is 99% failure”. Edison had to fail 9,999 times before he perfected the electric lightbulb.
I know it can be a pain and can be time-consuming and a bit frustrating if you need to go through a few induction techniques (or all of them) before you find one that works for you but it is well worth the effort.
Be persistent and consistent at your attempts. You would be surprised at the amount of people who give-up on their attempts just before they were about to achieve success – this goes for everything in life not just lucid dreaming.
To start your lucid dreaming journey you can follow the advice in my free mini-course for learning to lucid dream here. Or alternatively you can take a course that teaches you induction techniques and the best way to use them, like the lucid dreaming bootcamp.
There are also dream courses that do not exclusively deal with lucid dreaming but incorporate all aspects of the dreamworld into the trainings. Courses such as The Activated Dreamer delve into many different aspects of dreaming from dream interpretation to learning how to lucid dream.
The one drawback to only learning dream induction techniques is that you will learn how to induce lucid dreams but you must use trial-and-error to learn how to best control those dreams. You may also find that when you become lucid in your dreams you are unable to exert any power over them at all. It is very common for your first lucid dreams to be uncontrolled lucid dreams. In one of my first lucid dreams I couldn’t do anything because I was drunk in the dream though sober when I went to sleep!
Because lucid dreaming involves much more than just induction techniques I recommend joining an established lucid dreaming community that has a very effective lucid dreaming course attached to it. This way you not only learn how to induce lucid dreams, you also learn ways for gaining full control over the entire dreamworld and everything in it.
By being part of a growing community of experienced lucid dreamers you also get the opportunity to learn new techniques as they become available and to gain insights into your own challenges and get tips from lucid dreamers who have experienced the same challenges as you.
So what are you waiting for? Get dreaming!