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Ruby
02-24-2003, 10:46 PM
I always seem to remember dreams about horrible things. Not necessarily nightmares or night terrors (although I've had them too) but just bad things. Last night, for example, was that a customer was in the passenger seat and I was driving. Suddenly the passenger side door came off at the hinges pulling the screaming passenger out the door. This isn't an opportunity to try to analyze this dream or ponder if I have any repressed aggression against my customers (hehe).

My question: Is there is anything I can do to change this pattern?

I don't eat or drink before bed. I don't read scary novels. I have a "normal" life.

I've heard of people who say they have nice dreams. Fields of wildflowers, white fluffy clouds, and beautiful music kind of dreams.

What can I do to have nice dreams?

Dignan
02-24-2003, 11:02 PM
Try thinking happy thoughts all day. Try reading or studying just before bed. That's the best advice I can give you on how to have different dreams.

Maybe what you're looking for is info on "lucid dreams." Here are some threads that have covered that topic:

Lucid Dreaming (http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?threadid=152174&highlight=dream%2A)

Is this lucid dreaming? (http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?threadid=122621&highlight=dream%2A)

dream control??? (http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?threadid=77294&highlight=dream%2A)

Dream manipulation (http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?threadid=72899&highlight=dream%2A)

Indefatigable
02-25-2003, 12:19 AM
Seriously, sometimes if you have bad dreams and you don't know why, it just might be worth analysing them... if you can figure out consciously why it happens, your subconscious might not be so bothered by it anymore.

But dream analysis isn't fortune-telling... nobody can do it for you. If you get a book on dream analysis it will say things like 'horses represent sex, lemons represent money', etc. In your mind, you probably have very different meanings for the symbols or events that show up.

Ruby
02-25-2003, 12:36 AM
Thanks, Dignan. I found the first two lucid dreaming threads in my search and that didn't really cover my question. If I understand correctly, lucid dreaming is being able to control the outcome of a dream by being aware you are actually dreaming.

I was more interested if I could do something prior to sleep that would gently nudge my sleep-state to dream positive things and your second two threads helped with that. Apparently, some believe that just thinking about a thing as you are going to sleep may help your brain dream about it.

I'm going to try this tonight.

g'night.

Ruby
02-25-2003, 12:40 AM
Good point, Indefatigable. Since this happens so frequently, it may not be a bad idea to analyze them.

However, if no one can do it for me and the books are nonsense, how do I discover the "real meaning" of customer's flying out of my car?

Trigonal Planar
02-25-2003, 12:55 AM
No, what you want is lucid dreaming, believe me :)


Okay, maybe not...but I don't see the point in doing anything else. Why attempt to modify the theme of your dreams whilst awake when you can go the full monty and actively control your dreams?

As an experienced oneiraut, I can provide you with any LD info you may want.

kip70
02-25-2003, 08:37 AM
OK Trigonal Planar, how did you acquire that skill? Any sites you used that you can link too?

mipiace
02-25-2003, 11:56 AM
I agree, lucid dreaming. I do this all the time and it might take a little practice but whenever a dream starts to go in the wrong direction, I can re-direct and it comes out just fine. You can't control exactly what you dream about but y ou can change the parts you don't like. Good luck

Ruby
02-25-2003, 12:10 PM
Well, last night was a total bust. I didn't remember a single dream. However, I wanted to thank everyone for their response. I'm studying more about lucid dreaming and with a little luck and skill, maybe I'll be able to control even more of my life. :)

John Mace
02-25-2003, 12:17 PM
Check out the recent film, Vanilla Sky. It's all about lucid dreaming. In the meantime, you might try to avoid conditions that cause you to wake during the night. You tend to remember better those dreams which are nearest to wakeup times.

I'd be curious to hear more from those who claim to be able to lucid dream. I've tried it before and never been successful. I don't doubt it's real, just not so sure how "easy" it is.

Phlosphr
02-25-2003, 12:32 PM
How about a machine to help you out... We have a sleep clinic where I work and we routinely use a lucif dream machine.. The basic premise is this: You wear a small innocuous mask over your face with two red lights positioned over each eye... When you enter R.E.M (rapid eye movement) sleep the light flashes and you essentially wake up inside of your dream...

*During REM sleep you can not move any muscles and you are essentially still in a very deep sleep state.

Usually this happens maybe a half dozen times during the night, each time getting progressively longer. First one may be 5 minutes the last, right before you wake up being almost 90 minutes...Thats why when you wake and remember a dream it is so vivid in your mind...

Anyway back to the machine... it is put out by Lucid Technologies and is a wondrous addition to ones bedroom....Check it outhere (http://www.lucidity.com/) ..

Trigonal Planar
02-25-2003, 02:09 PM
mipiace: Well, it depends how "lucid" you are. Lucidity ranges from low-level to high-level lucidity.

At high-level lucidity, you are fully conscious that you are in a dream and you *can* do whatever you want. However, obtaining & maintaining high-level lucidity is very difficult to do.

Trinopus
02-25-2003, 04:57 PM
Originally posted by Ruby
I was more interested if I could do something prior to sleep that would gently nudge my sleep-state to dream positive things and your second two threads helped with that.


The more secure you are in your own mind -- the better your self-esteem and self-image -- the better your dreams will be.

Dreams are essentially random, and involve a partial paralysis of long-term memory. Images come and go, and change strangely. At one point you'll be walking down a street with your sister...and a few minutes later you're somewhere else, and she's your last girlfriend...and you don't *remember* that this is somehow wrong.

Part of your dreams involves the brain trying to make sense of random visual flickerings, just as we tend to see shapes in clouds or trees or the scorch-stains on tortillas.


Apparently, some believe that just thinking about a thing as you are going to sleep may help your brain dream about it.

I'm going to try this tonight.


I don't think this is particularly effective...but, hey, it can't hurt! Seriously, I believe that the biggest trick is just to "make friends" with your unconscious, and not to be afraid of sleep and dreams. Convince yourself that these images are of, by, and from *you.* They are yours, and you need to embrace them as such. They aren't alien impositions from some other universe.

For people who are SERIOUSLY troubled by recurrent nightmares, I have one recommendation: drink a lot of water before turning in. You'll have anxiety dreams prompted by your need to urinate, but this is (barely!) preferable to full-scale nightmares.

Trinopus

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