For many of us, dreaming is one of those things that is entirely out of our control and that we can't really change. You dream what you dream, and it's all up in the air whether you remember it or not. But apparently, there is something called lucid dreaming. It's when you actually trick your body into falling asleep, but your mind is not actually in the same state, and you can basically control your dreams. It's a pretty wild concept.
Naturally, I just had to try it out. After reading up on it a bit, I learned a bit about the process of going to sleep. Your body wants to get comfortable. This is why in bed you often need to change positions, roll over, shake something out, or twitch. This is the mind's way of testing the body to see if it's ready to go to sleep. When all is said and done, your body eventually decides, yes, you are ready to sleep, and the lights go out. However, the trick to this lucid dreaming deal is to stay completely and totally still. (This is the part where my knowledge is a bit faded, so if someone knows, please fill me in) I gathered from my reading that at this point, your body sort of thinks it is already asleep -- and therefore rushes right into REM, the point of the sleep cycle where we have dreams. The mind follows suit, sort of, but stays awake enough for us to be aware of what's going on, and, believe or not, have a "say" in what happens in the dream.
My dreams are usually pretty bizarre. They contain events and people that, on their own, would make sense, but the combination of everything makes it unrealistic and almost a bit crazy. Dreams to me always feel "fuzzy" when I'm in them. As if I'm moving through water and I can't see clearly. Maybe even like how a person who wears glasses feels when they first wake up (groggy and perhaps a little bit on the blind side). Regardless of the clarity though, I never feel like I can take control of what's going on. I am always restrained, handicapped of my will.
I decided this lucid dreaming deal might be really cool to play around with, and started trying it out. Literally, though, you have to basically drop dead once you're in bed. No movements whatsoever. I think, that to some degree, I've gotten it to work, sort of. But I have never woken up saying "wow, I was totally in control of that dream!". I think it really takes time and practice, a training session of the mind basically. Some nights, I don't really bother. I just let my body do what it wants to when I get in bed. But the nights I feel adventurous, I actually try it. Even if you don't have complete control over your dreams - I still seem to remember my dreams a lot better this way. I'm talking lots of details!
If you're feeling bold tonight as you're going to bed, why not give it a try?