When someone wants to get started with lucid dreaming, one of the biggest hurdles is being able to wake up inside that first dream and take control of it. It’s possible to overcome this hurdle by using hypnosis to guide them directly from a waking state into a lucid dream.
So how do we hypnotize someone into a lucid dream? All that’s needed is a process that can send our subject to sleep, while simultaneously building a hypnotic reality that becomes their lucid dream when they fall asleep. With a little more effort, we can also help them to automate their reality checks and dream journaling. In this article, we’ll go over the important steps needed to hypnotize either yourself or someone else into a lucid dream.
But first, what exactly is a lucid dream?
What is a lucid dream?
In the simplest terms, a lucid dream is nothing more than a dream in which we’re aware that we are asleep and dreaming. When we have this awareness, it becomes possible to take control of our dreams and shape them to our will.
Lucid dreaming has been around for all of human history, so as you might imagine, there are a lot of different ways to induce lucid dreams.
In this article, we’re going to cover how to induce a lucid dream with hypnosis. In lucid dreaming terms, this is known as a Wake Induced Lucid Dream (WILD), and the specific form of WILD that uses hypnosis is known as a Hypnosis Induced Lucid Dream (HILD).
As you can probably guess from the name, WILDs are lucid dreams that we step into directly from being awake.
There are two things we need in order to have lucid dreams.
First, we need a way to wake up inside those dreams so that we can take control of them. Since we’ll be using hypnosis to induce the lucid dream, there is no reason for our subject to lose awareness, so this part is taken care of.
And second, we need a way to recall our dreams afterwards. The easiest way I know of to achieve this is to keep a dream journal that we write in as soon as we wake up.
Unfortunately, there’s a tiny problem with keeping a dream journal: We have to remember to write in it before we forget our dreams shortly after we wake up. Using hypnosis, it’s possible to automate this process a little, making it more likely that our subject will remember to do it.
If you’re unfamiliar with lucid dreaming, you might like to read my article on How to Have Lucid Dreams in which I cover the basics.
Things to consider when hypnotizing someone into a lucid dream
There are a few things that it’s important to consider when we’d like someone to have a lucid dream.
First, it’s important that their environment is optimized for sleep. A lot of people have relatively poor sleeping environments, so correcting this can help immensely.
The key things we want to take care of are clearing out any thoughts that might keep them awake, along with the basics like making sure they’re as comfortable as possible. I go into this in my article on How to Hypnotize Someone to Sleep.
Next, if possible, we want to set things up in such a way that they can use their dreams to automatically fix any problems they might have. In a sense, this is what dreams are for, so this part can be quite easy to set up with hypnosis.
And finally, we want our process to help our subject to do the things that make it easier for them to wake up inside their dreams and take control of them.
This means it’s going to be helpful if we can use the hypnosis session to help our subject to automate their reality checking process, and also to help them to reach for their journal as soon as they wake up in the morning.
How to hypnotize someone into a lucid dream
So what does all of that look like in practice?
There are many possible structures. When I do this, I usually build enough stuff into the induction itself that my hypnosis subject doesn’t have enough resources left over to think about other things that might keep them awake. To keep things clear, we’ll do that as a separate process here.
With that in mind, here are the basic steps.
Step 1: Clear any unwanted thoughts
Before anything else, it’s important to have our hypnosis subject focused on the task at hand. So the very first thing we want to do is clear out any unwanted thoughts that might keep them awake.
There are many ways to do this. The simplest method is to have your subject write any such thoughts out in a notebook.
Step 2: Write a dream plan
Once we’ve cleared out any unwanted thoughts, the next step is to write out a dream plan. This is a few sentences written in present tense that describe the dream they’d like to have. It should be written by the dreamer rather than the hypnotist.
There is no reason for the hypnotist to be aware of what’s in the dream plan unless they are also the dreamer.
After writing the dream plan, it’s time for bed so have your subject do whatever pre-sleep things are necessary and then go to bed. Make sure they have their dream journal and a pen at the ready beside them for when they wake up in the morning.
Step 3: Induce hypnosis
If we’re going to hypnotize someone into a lucid dream, we’re going to have to induce hypnosis. You can use any induction that works with sleep here. I go into this in more detail in my article How to Hypnotize Someone to Sleep.
Visualizations tend to work brilliantly.
And if you need extra help, I’ve written an article containing a complete script for Hypnosis Induced Lucid Dreaming.
Step 4: Begin to build a hypnotic reality
Once hypnosis is induced, we want to start to build some kind of scene inside our subject’s mind. If you’ve used a visualization induction, they’ll already be there.
If not, describe somewhere pleasant and orient your subject into it. Even a simple field with a tree is fine.
When you do this, engage as many of their senses as possible. Here’s some examples:
- Describe what they can see. Include fine detail as well as describing the overall scene.
- Describe any sounds they can hear.
- Describe any touch sensations. This can include the sun on their face, the touch of a gentle breeze on their cheek, the feel of bark as they run their fingers over a tree.
- Describe any smells.
- Tastes are usually unlikely, but if they are present, describe those too.
- Describe how they feel when they’re there. Naturally these feelings should be conducive to sleep like calm, tranquil, peaceful, and so on.
- Have them notice textures when they touch things.
- Draw their attention to the qualities of the colors.
Our aim with this step is twofold: We’re deepening their hypnotic trance, and we’re also teaching them the minimum level of detail they should use when they visualize their dream a little later on in the process.
Step 5: Look for a pathway
Have your subject look around inside the hypnotic reality for a pathway of some kind. I find that it tends to work best if I use phrases like you’ll know it when you see it.
Ideally we want the subject to discover the pathway rather than us creating it for them. This reinforces that it’s their path.
If it seems to be taking them too long, suggest different forms their pathway might take. This could include things like an actual pathway, a tunnel underground, a bridge, a corridor, or even some kind of teleportation.
When you suggest enough options, their mind will eventually latch onto one and they’ll find it.
Step 6: Travel down the path to a portal
Have your subject travel down the pathway, paying attention to all the details as they go. This serves dual purposes. Paying attention to the details will deepen the trance state, and traveling tells them that they are going somewhere.
Have them continue down the pathway until they find a portal or doorway of some kind. As with the pathway itself, tell them that they’ll know it when they find it.
Step 7: Visualize the dream plan
When they are outside the doorway, remind them that they have a dream plan, and have them start to visualize it. Make this visualization as detailed and multi-sensory as possible.
Step 8: Step through the doorway into the lucid dream
Once they’ve got a clear picture of their dream inside their mind, have them step through the doorway and allow their dream to form around them.
Remind your subject that they can carry out reality checks, and suggest that they will discover some during this dream. Also suggest that they’ll find themselves automatically performing those reality checks as they go about their days after they wake up in the morning.
Tell them that they can look around and notice all the details, then encourage them to go exploring.
Suggest that as they’re exploring they might discover new and useful things. If they have mentioned specific problems to you, suggest they might meet someone in the dream who will explore with them.
In this step, we want to give them a set of frames that will help them to make the dream as useful as possible. Since most of us we dream multiple times every night, there’s plenty of scope to work on just one thing at a time.
If in doubt, start with telling them they will discover some new reality checks, since this will help them to have more lucid dreams in the future.
Step 9: Drift off to sleep
When it looks like they are engaged with the dream, tell them that they will find they can explore the dream for as long as they like and that they will wake up at the perfect time having had exactly the right amount of sleep.
Remind them that when they wake up in the morning, they will take a few moments to build a clear picture of this dream in their mind, and then will pick up their dream journal and start writing.
Then tell them it’s time for them to explore their dream and bid them good night.
And if you need more help
Phew! That’s a lot of steps! The good news is that you don’t have to worry about getting them right too much. Most of us sleep every night, so if stuff doesn’t work, or you forget steps, all you have to do is change things about a little the next time.
After a few tries, it will start to become apparent what kinds of things work for you and what kinds of things don’t. Get good at the stuff that works for you first, then experiment with the other things once you’ve built your confidence.
As with all hypnosis, ask your subject about their experience so that you can make tiny refinements each time. Naturally since they are being sent to sleep in the session, this will be the following day.
Lucid dreaming is one of those skills that once we have it, everything else becomes easier, so it’s usually worth investing as much time as is required to get there.
If you need extra help with inducing hypnosis, you might enjoy my article How to Hypnotize Someone Easily.
I’ve also put together a Hypnosis Induced Lucid Dreaming Script that you can either read to your subject, or take apart for ideas.
Naturally, if we’d like to hypnotize someone into a lucid dream, it’s useful if we’ve experienced it ourselves.
We can do this either by having another hypnotist take us through the process, or by using self-hypnosis.
How to use self-hypnosis to have lucid dreams
One of the interesting things about the human mind is that we can only hold a very small number of things in our conscious awareness at once.
This has the side-effect that it can be difficult for us to remember long sequences of steps.
In this case, we have 7 steps after we go to bed.
And since each of these has multiple things for us to remember, it’s beyond the capacity of a human mind to do it all in one go.
Luckily this is easy to work around.
You see, as we work through the process a few times, each step becomes attached to the one before it in our minds.
So what we have to do is practice until we can run the entire sequence without really thinking about it.
If you want to get there fast, you can do this during the day while you’re awake.
For most people, it’s easiest to simply spread it out over a couple of weeks.
Each day, do steps 1 and 2, since you don’t have to hold those ones in your memory.
Then work through the process as far as you can recall.
On the first day, you’ll probably be able to induce hypnosis. If you’re good at visualizing, you might be able to build the hypnotic reality.
The key is to not worry about how far through you get. Just know that each time you do it, you’ll get slightly better at it.
And before long it will form a habit.
Once that happens, the entire thing is a breeze.
If you don’t know how to hypnotize yourself, you can find instructions on how to do that in my article on How to Hypnotize Yourself.
You’ll probably need to practice self-hypnosis a bit before you can do it quickly and easily on-demand. But like lucid dreaming, self-hypnosis is such a useful skill that it’s definitely worth the effort.
And if you already know how to hypnotize yourself, you should now have everything you need to get started with hypnotizing yourself into a lucid dream tonight!