If you can’t get out of your head and pay attention to the world around you when you’re awake, how can you possibly do the same when you are dreaming?
This self-awareness is essential to learning lucid dreaming.
The key to developing self-awareness, is through meditation. Some see meditation as esoteric, new age, woo-woo nonsense. When it comes to some aspects of meditation I agree with them. However, don’t throw away the baby with the bath water.
Meditation: What, How, When, & Where
Meditation has been scientifically been proven to reduce stress, improve concentration, and improve mental clarity.
The best way to see meditation is simply as a set of breathing and mindset rituals that pull your attention to the present moment and make you more aware of the world around you, instead of being in your head.
One simple meditation I like to do is go to a quiet place without any distractions, and sit on a chair with my back straight. I set a timer for 20 minutes and just pay attention to my breathing. Pay attention to air flowing in and out of your lungs.
If thoughts come to your mind, don't follow the thread of thinking, merely observe the thoughts. Don't judge yourself for not being able to focus. If you haven't meditated before you will notice how difficult it is to shut off your thoughts. That's okay, don't get frustrated. Like any other skill it takes time.
20 minutes may be too much time for a beginner. You may be more comfortable starting with 5 minutes a day and slowly working your way up to 20 minutes.
More Presence = More Lucid Dreams
After doing meditation for several weeks you will notice a greater sense of calm and peace. You will stop constantly worry about the past and projecting yourself into the future and be more aware of the present moment.
This greater sense of self-awareness will carry over to your dream state, which will dramatically increase the chances of you having a lucid dream.
If you are just starting out, we also recommend you check out a free app called "Headspace" which offers short, guided meditations to get you started.
Here are the links for that app: