Adams WILD Technique
Version 1.0 updated 25th February 2008
Version 1.1 updated 16th March 2008
Version 2.0 updated 17th July 2008
I have been lucid dreaming for about 13 years or so now, I do not know the exact time, but it has been since childhood, so I guess I could be put into the brand of a natural lucid dreamer. Until recently all my lucid dreams have been natural Dream Initiated Lucid Dreams (DILD) or Dream Exit Induced Lucid Dreams (DEILD). I have been practicing a variation of Wake Initiated Lucid Dreams (WILD) techniques for about a year now and this version 2 written specifically for the members and readers of Mortal Mist explains what I do when I WILD. This technique appears to be the most successful for me. For most of the techniques that I have read they teach you to focus your attention on Hypnagogic Imagery (HI) and sounds (HS), ask that you stay awake for anything up to 2 hours; sometimes more. What I do is focus more on the physical sensations created by the mind, rather than visual sensations. Incorporating Wake-Back-To-Bed (WBTB) and only being up for a maximum of 10 minutes. This is good for people who are worried about becoming tired in their attempts to WILD and also typically good for those who have trouble inducing visual sensations.
The WILD technique basically works by remaining conscious until you fall to sleep and start dreaming instantly whilst remaining conscious in the dream. If done right with practice it can be a relatively easy technique and can produce some amazing experiences. The WILD technique works best in conjunction with WBTB since you enter Rapid-Eye-Movement (REM) sleep a lot faster after 5-6 hours sleep and don't enter stages 3 and 4 as you do when you first go to sleep.
The big problem I encounter when sharing this technique with others is remaining conscious until the dream starts. Overcoming this leads to many strange experiences, some can be quite scary, others very strange, quite synonymous with its name ‘WILD' I guess.
I have put this guide together as this is a variation on the technique which works very well for me and has produced some amazing results, even managing to WILD from going straight to sleep avoiding WBTB! I hope this helps others, and if there are any questions I am happy to help, so on with the tutorial.
Okay there is one thing you need to consider before trying this, this might change based on your successes but for me the following I have found is important. I will try to explain why it is important and how you can achieve results.
- Ensure your sleep pattern is regular and plentiful!
One point I have found common with people new to lucid dreaming or who have trouble with lucid dreaming and/or dream recall is a good amount of sleep and a regular sleep schedule. My theory is the better quality the sleep is, the more relaxed the body is. For example – if you tend to sleep for short amounts of time each evening your body doesn't get the rest it needs. The amount of sleep required varies with each individual, with the average being 7.2 hours. Some people require no more than 4 to 6 hours of sleep, while others require 8 to 10 hours. By ages 15-19, we begin to establish our lifetime average. The amount of sleep required stabilises once one reaches adulthood. I am a believer that 8 hours should be sufficient for your body to be restful.
I have noticed with lack of sleep, I sleep deeper, primarily because the body doesn't have a regular pattern of sleep, and doesn't know when the next amount of good sleep is going to come from, so sleep is deeper for the body to get the rest required to recharge. Regular, plentiful and scheduled sleep allows the biological clock to sync and your body can sleep lighter knowing it will be getting regular sleep/rest – and I believe there is a direct correlation between good, light sleep and lucid dreaming success. Mainly due to lighter REM sleep.
The technique is to be practiced in conjunction with the aforementioned prerequisite. Results cannot be guaranteed since this technique has been refined to me, but happy to work with people to get this to work well with them. My technique is aimed at working alongside WBTB, as this seems to be where the best results come, not just for this technique but also for most WILD techniques.
- Set your alarm for about 4.5 to 5.5 hours after you go to bed this is allowing for 30 minutes to fall asleep. It would be beneficial and results would be better getting to sleep at about 11pm. This means you get up around 3/4am, it is still dark, and external distractions do not come into the equation, since everyone else should be sleeping too. One common complaint is people try to WILD and then some outside their room is talking, or their cat jumps on their bed. Doing it in the middle of the night limits these distractions.
- Once awake, aim to be awake for about 5/10 minutes. These times can vary, and you will need to work to find which amount of time is sufficient for you. If you are awake for 5 minutes and you find you fall to sleep too quickly, then lengthen the time you are awake for, and vice versa. I find the time it takes me to take a quick toilet break and get a glass of water sufficient, so little over 5 minutes.
- When awake, I usually take a toilet break (easier to concentrate on the WILD on an empty bladder) and perhaps get a glass of water (I drink about a pint during the night) or something, but this is usually it. I then get back into bed. Try not to wake too much as this can sometimes make it harder to fall back to sleep. I find if it takes me more than about 20 minutes to WILD I get frustrated and this has a detrimental affect on my success.
- When in bed there's not really too much ground breaking here, but it is different from what others do – I basically wait a couple of minutes for my body to get relaxed, my heart rate to slow down, thinking about nothing, just falling to sleep and letting my breathing return to a gentle pattern. This can be in any position you like, just try get rested again. Naturally your heart will be beating faster, because when you sleep, your heart rate slows down, getting up and out of bed speeds it up again. So resting for a minute or two is important to relax yourself. Then when I feel relaxed enough, and I am ready to drop off, this is when I start to WILD.
- Lay as still as you can, eyes shut, and preferably on your back, although not imperative, I find it easier to manipulate the sensations on my back, but try what is best for you. I focus my attention on my body; primarily on my back (this is why lying on your back helps). At first it seems there is not a great deal going on, but usually to start off with I will focus my attention on my back sinking into my bed. Sometimes in tandem my eyes will also feel as if they are looking further away into blackness. Like when you concentrate on your eyelids, it's like you are looking beyond them. I use this visualisation to make it feel like I am sinking deeper into my bed.
[An important note here is that at no point do I concentrate on Hypnagogic Imagery. All sensations I focus on are tactile, not visual. You might find visualisations help, but for me I do not use them]
- When you get to this stage, it is important to try not to force these sensations. Go with them. Initially it will more than likely be your back sinking and sometimes it might feel like you are going to flip around, or you might experience a sliding sensation. It varies each night, but the main focus is on the sensations. What I do is wait for them to get quite intensive. The feeling of rapidly falling or swinging and then try landing myself (usually I feel like I am falling at this point) somewhere. Like back on a bed, or just into a room. You have to focus your mind on the feeling of your back sinking, or your legs rising, but once you get these, your mind takes over and this allows you to WILD.
- The transition from these sensations into a lucid dream can be quite tricky, getting into the dream might be difficult at first but it is important to remember that if at first you don't get there you should be able to quickly get back to the sensations and start again. I sometimes find myself going back to the sensations a couple of times, and you should really get there instantly providing you don't wake up.
I learnt that one key thing which helped was when lying still and with my eyes shut it was like I was focussing on my eyelids. But soon I tried looking beyond them, and my vision would change to seem like I was focussing further and further away from them. I used this then to feel like it was me moving away from this rather than my sight looking further ahead if that makes sense? So when I am looking into my eyelids, I visualise my back sinking into the bed, and at the same time my vision would look beyond my eyelids further convincing myself I was sinking further and further into my bed. And from here once you get these sensations they pretty much take over.
One difficulty I have experienced is breathing. I found sometimes that if I was breathing too deeply my breathing in would counteract the sensations of me sinking. Because your stomach/chest moves outwards when you inhale, so this counteracted my sensations I was trying to induce. So then I would lye still in my bed, waiting till I was tired and ready to sleep and my breathing had slowed right down, then I would be ready to try. Once I had realised this, then it was a matter of using my vision it help induce the sinking sensations, which doesn't always happen at first, but after a while you begin to feel it. Something which helped was digging my back into my bed and holding it there for 30/60 seconds, and then you relax, this gives the opposite feeling that it is in fact your legs sinking, which helped a lot.
I am happy to answer any questions you might have if you are going to try this technique. Any comments or suggestions you might have are also very welcome. I hope this brings you many lucid dreams like it has done for me.
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DILD: Dream Initiated Lucid Dream –When you realise you are dreaming whilst already in the dream.
DEILD: Dream Exit Induced Lucid Dream – When you awaken for a brief period and fall back into a lucid dream.
WILD: Wake Initiated Lucid Dream – When you consciously enter a lucid dream from being awake.
WBTB: Wake Back To Bed – When you awaken from sleep and then return back to sleep, later entering a lucid dream.
HI: Hypnagogic Imagery – Imagery you may see in sleep paralysis.
HS: Hypnagogic Sounds – Sounds you may here when in sleep paralysis
FA: False Awakening – When you are lucid, but your mind tricks you into believing you have woken up, although you are still actually dreaming.
SP: Sleep Paralysis – A state of paralysis your body puts you into when sleeping to avoid you acting out your dreams and to ensure you stay relatively still during sleep.
REM: Rapid Eye Movement – Part of your sleep cycle where it is believed most of your dreams, and lucid dream occur.
More information on the above can be found searching these forums.