How many Reality Checks = Success?

Just wondering how many (on average) meaningful RCs those on this forum peform on a daily basis, and what percentage of those that have a certain frequency actully achieve regular to semi-regular lucid dreams.

I can honestly say I do at least 6 per day, and am still struggling to reign in more than 1 or 2 LDs per month at best. Whereas, I’d much rather be closer to 1 per week if possible.

So, if Success with Lucid Dreaming = 1 or more Lucid Dream per week, what is the significant threshold of RC frequency that boosts the chances of that goal?

Warning: this ended up a little longer than I’d planned, but should still be comprehensive. :razz:

Generally speaking when it comes to RC’s it’s quality over quantity. You’ll want to make sure that when you do your reality checks that you really ask yourself the question: “Am I dreaming?”

And don’t just answer to yourself that you’re not. Genuinely ask yourself the question. Become aware of your surroundings. Take a good look around, listen to the sounds, rub your hands, touch something. Get all of your senses going for a bit. This should not need more than 10 seconds or so. THEN perform a RC, expecting it to work (i.e. try to imagine what would happen if you were dreaming).

With that in mind, I’d say that doing RC’s at random times during the day is best. I’d say try to do at least one every hour, but don’t use a timer to do them. Ten or twelve would be the minimum on a given day and more is better, but only if you do them properly.

If you spend 10-15 seconds per RC, and take a moment to become aware of yourself and your senses, then the RC will be that much more effective.

Another thing you could do, rather than determining that you’re going to check somewhat randomly, is to decide in advance when you’re going to perform the RC’s. This will get your prospective memory going, increasing your success rate with MILD, for instance. There are several ways to do this.

  1. You make a predetermined list of events and do an RC every time one such event comes up. For instance every time you see a dog, or every time you hear a car horn, or every time you wash your hands. You can make up any sort of minor event. A combination of a few that will likely result in at least 10 RC’s a day probably works best.

  2. You decide, on an individual RC basis, what the event is and when you’re going to RC. For example, you might go like… “In 20 minutes I’ll be at the mall and when I walk through the entrance I will ask myself if I’m dreaming.” You can decide a few in advance, or you can just decide on a new event after every RC.

If you use one of these last two, rather than the random RC’s (both work fine, TBH and you can do all of it, if you feel so inclined), it helps a lot if you picture yourself in the relevant events. This roots it in your memory quite strongly.

Whatever you end up doing, the RC’s combined in any given day will take you only 3 or 4 minutes (if you take 15 seconds per RC and do, for instance 12-16 like I do). And it should improve your chances of becoming lucid.

But it’s best if you still perform a technique such as MILD at night. When you wake up from a dream, take a moment to think about that dream, and imagine yourself becoming lucid in that dream, and performing a reality check. Then simply allow yourself to fall asleep again, whilst intending to become lucid in your next dream (keep this thought going for as long as possible until it’s the last thing you think about before falling asleep).

Like Svenshinan says its Quality over Quantity, and also the effort you put into them, me for example have reached that point when RC’s no longer works due to overuse :razz: so apart from what Sven said there are periods RC’s wont work and periods when they work :roll:

Good post, Svenshinhan! :happy: Just a little thing to add, RC’s work best if you get used to what a dream feels like, so you could try and remember what dreams you had the previous night, especially what they felt like, and if there’s any difference with what you’re feeling now. Differences can include, feeling lighter, more comfortable in temperature, a little number, so try and compare, it’s a very useful exercise :content:

The way I do it, is that I don’t think about it too much when I do a RC.

For instance, as soon as the thought of RCing comes to my head I instantly do one without really thinking about my surroundings, to sort of “surprise” myself. Cause if I start thinking about it too much, the part of my brain which distinguishes between reality and fiction will simply tell me “No bro, this is reality!” before I do my RC.
So you have to do the RC before your brain has to react.

Well that’s my take on it! Hope it helps.

How Many Reality Checks = Success?..NONE.
What Is the Response To A Dreamsign? = Reality Check!
How Many Times Should A Dreamsign Appear Per Day? = NONE except in dreams.


I have to say I done a RC very often, without taking in surroundings etc, but i will try and take more notice now. I did not do a RC for about a week i think, that’s when I had a LD, I am strange i have to say, my dreams are far more vivid after Wine hahaa :smile: But i think the point i am trying to make is that once i relaxed about the whole thing and stopped doing RC’s, I had a LD. My Daughter did say thou I was doing them without knowing lol. Ok im not making sense , but in my head i am so ill leave ya to it lol x

For my RC i set my watch to make a beep every hour.
Once i hear the beep i look around take in everything look for anything odd
then i check my hands and try to put my finger through them and then i pinch my nose and try to breathe, then i continue doing what i was doing.
But i was wondering if i kept my watch near me when i sleep, would i hear it in my dream? it only beeps once so i don’t know if it’ll sink in or not.

Definitely it would help a lot if you would, Minato.
Your practice with the watch would be a little pointless - you’re training yourself to question reality when you hear a particular tone, that is independent from you, instead of being actually looking for dream signs, or being generally aware.
But, if you put your watch close to yourself when you sleep, you will hear that tone in dreams too, and that could verily trigger a successful RC. Just remember to put it distant enough so you stay asleep when you hear it! :tongue:

I would just like to point out that one of my biggest dreamsigns is being at work and not typing in numbers correctly in the register. That happens to me in RL, frequently in fact. There are just too many numbers to remember sometimes. If I were to ignore this during the day, I would ignore it in my dreams. Not all DS are a big pink octopus as a boss or something strange like that. If you have a common occurance in dreams that also happens to be IRL, it’s still a DS and you should still take full advantage of it.

Such a good idea, sadly my phone does not have that option.

People, do you know somebody on ld4all (or in RL) who can make phone apps? It would be cool to have a Lucid Dreaming App on my phone.

Ive poking my hand for 2 weeks now i believe, but only succeeded once in a dream.

I was about to ask the same question as OP. I know that quality is very important, but for sure that quantity is also important. How many RC you, when you were a newbie, did every day? One is not enough, 200 its overhelming…

Svenshinhan, great answer, very complete. As a failed-lucid-dreamer, I will start to check my luck with random RC. I remember more often to do random checks than doing on pre-determined events (“when I see a dog”, etc).

I didn’t dare to open a new topic, but I think this one is the one in which I can expose my problem with RC.

For weeks, I do my RC very genuinly, and then, because of works, or tiredness, I forget…and that’s the moment I have LD :confused: Did it occur to somebody ?

Or maybe this is because my mind took the habitude to do so ? :eh:

Svendishan, I’m gonna follow your advice, I have faith :wink:

It’s very important to question reality at the right time. From my non lucid dreams that turn lucid later on I’ve realized that I have been doing wrong when it comes to dreams. I had this one non lucid dream where I was terrorized by the whole dream so it seemed and when everything calmed down then I noticed that something was wrong, only then I question the moment and the reality, not in the moment of the heat, not when I was under pressure but when everything calmed down.

What I wanna say is that I did that in a lucid dream because I was doing in waking life too, whenever I would do something I would be preoccupied by doing something in particular and when I was done I would do RC but what I was supposed to do is question reality “while” doing whatever I was doing.

So you are a teacher, right?! When you work with your students, while doing on exams, questioning students in those situations you should question reality too, not only when you are done with doing this things.

You don’t have to do a physical RC like looking at your hands or pinching your nose and trying to breath, you can do a mental check, you can ask THE questions: Am I dreaming?! Is this a dream?! How did I get here?! Is this student supposed to be here?! What am I doing at the moment?! And so on and on…

It takes practice but with time it’s amazing how much results can give… :content:

As I said in other topic I had a plan. I worked on it for many days, doing lots of RCs, questioning myself if this or that is possible, I tried to be mindfull all the day (mindful in a buddhist point of view, ie, awareness on everything around me), etc. How many LDs did I have? Zero.

After some days without that stuff I had a LD! I dreamt about falling down in a high place and I tought “This is a dream!”. I mean, the situation that lead me to see that I was dreaming was falling down from a very high place, something that I never do lol. It seems that achieving lucidity is something more than RC and full awareness of your life. I just dont know what.

Hey Wild Elephant!

Im no LD expert- but I’ve had some, so I’ll throw my opinion out there.

By your account of the dream, it seems as if you didn’t do a reality check, so you would be right in saying that doing RC didn’t necessarily help you become lucid that night.
However, you may have became lucid because of the “all day mindfulness” technique you did a couple days before this dream. I personally find this technique very helpful because it helps you to realize when you are in an abnormal situation (like suddenly falling) , and realizing your dreaming.

Perhaps, as an alternative, it was related to dream signs! I know that falling seems to be a common dream that a lot of people have, and in a way, can be considered a dream sign. If you are aware that people tend to dream of themselves falling, then when you encounter that situation in your own dreams, maybe it helped you become lucid?

All in all, sometimes it’s hard to say what exactly causes lucidity in some dreams.

Thank you dB FTS for your answer. I rode it several times to really understand it, but I now I get it clear.

You’re so right ; I’m doing my RC only when I’m home, cooking, smoking, preparing my lessons…when I’m working, I am so focus on what I’m doing that I can’t think about RC. But now, it’s gonna change :content:

The root problem is in prioritization. We weren’t taught to make dreams priority in any kind of way so when we grow up and when we start to live in grown up world we do grown up things, that’s why children have less trouble with dreams then us. But well, we can change that, we just have to be aware of it…

Good luck! :content:

Performing 5-10 reality checks is a good number, but as Svenshinhan said it’s a matter of quality, not quantity. Mindlessly going through the motions of a reality check will not help you.

One trick is to do reality checks with the assumption that you are already dreaming. This challenges the basic human assumption that all experiences are waking experiences. It will shift the burden of proof on your brain to prove that you NOT dreaming.

Another tip is to make a habit of performing 2 different reality checks together in case one of them fails.

Also keep in mind that lucid dreaming training is a holistic process that requires you to perform many different activities. Reality checks are just one aspect of learning lucid dreaming. Are you consistently keeping a dream journal, improving your dream recall, analyzing your dreamsigns, are learning to master an induction technique? (eg. WILD or MILD), etc.