Increase your chances of Lucidity with the Wake-Back-To-Bed Technique

The Wake-Back-To-Bed technique (WBTB) was developed by Stephen LaBerge and has since been shown to improve the odds of having a lucid dream by up to 10 times!

WBTB isn't really a technique in itself but more of an aid you can use to enhance the effectiveness of whatever lucid dream induction techniques you are using. Because dreams are made of what is on our mind, waking up before a dream and thinking about lucid dreaming has proven to be an effective method of increasing chances of having one.

The Technique:

1.Wake Yourself Up

Ideally you would wake yourself up just before a REM cycle, and setting your intention to do this before you go to bed will make this more likely however this can be difficult at first since you naturally wake up is after a REM cycle. During the later parts of sleep the REM cycles are longer very close to each other, so later on in the night waking up after one will still work fine.

The easiest way to wake yourself up is obviously with an alarm, to get the timing right you'll have to estimate when your REM cycle starts and finishes. REM cycles typically occur every 90 minutes, so if you set an alarm for 4.5, 6 or 7.5 hours after you go to sleep, chances are you'll wake up just at the end of a REM period. (With practice you'll become familiar with your bodies own sleep rhythms and will be able to fine tune this timing).

Get out of bed as soon as possible after waking up, as this will prevent you from falling back asleep.

2. Focus on Lucid Dreaming

Now you're awake, you want to fill your mind with thoughts of Lucid Dreaming. The most recent thoughts and experiences before going to bed often occur during dreams that night so by filling your mind with lucid dreaming content you are increasing the chances of this appearing in your dreams when you go back to bed and becoming lucid. Here are some common ways that people have found helpful in keeping their minds focused on lucid dreaming:

Meditation - Remember you don't want your mind empty, you want it filled with thoughts of lucid dreams, so make sure your meditation is focused on lucid dreaming. It may prove beneficial to listen to relaxing music while you meditate to keep you from waking up too much.

Mantras - Many people chat or repeat mantras while performing a WBTB. This helps put thoughts of lucid dreaming into the brain and works as autosuggestion. Common mantras include:
- I will realise when I'm dreaming
- I will have a lucid dream tonight
- I will remember to do a reality check

Dream Journal - Writing down your dreams from that night and reading through your more recent or most exciting lucid dreams.

Read / Watch Lucid Dream Materials - Reading books, articles, or watching movies related to lucid dreaming is one of the most common techniques. Reading and going through the induction technique you are going to use has shown to be particularly effective.

You should aim to stay awake for long enough for your mind to become active and alert, but not so long that your body is too awake to be able to fall back asleep.

Participants in the "Wakefulness During the Night: Aiming Towards the Perfect Lucid Dreaming Technique" experiment performed by the Lucidity Institute demonstrated that staying awake for between 30 and 60 minutes gave the most effective results.

3. Go back to bed

Keep your mind focused on having a lucid dream as you go back to sleep, and use any induction technique you would normally use when going to bed. In order to allow your mind to produce at least one dream period you should go back to sleep for between 60 and 90 minutes (1 complete REM cycle).

And that's all there is to it! When you are using this technique there's one key point that its worth bearing in mind, particularly if you have school or a job to go to:
Remember if you are getting up for an hour during the night you are losing sleep, so either go to bed an hour earlier to balance this out or expect to be tired and maybe not quite at 100% the next day.


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