What are reality checks?
Reality checks are exactly what the term implies them to be. They are checks on whether what a person is experiencing is real or simply a dream since things that may be so in reality may not be so in dreams.
Why should I perform reality checks?
A simple thing you should remember is that what we do in waking life can be carried over into what we do in dreams. With this in mind, if you do reality checks often in real life, then these reality checks may carry over in dreams. A reality check performed in dreams can then push you to lucidity if that reality check falls short.
What are a few examples of RCs?
There are a number of RCs you can use. In fact, you can make your own RCs as long as they have a good chance of folding in a dream and making you realize it. A few popular RCs are as follows:
- Nose RC[/i] – What you do here is just plug your nose and try to breathe through it. If you can breathe than you’re dreaming!
2. Finger Through Palm – Take any of your fingers and try to stick it into your palm. If your finger goes through then you’re dreaming!
3. Hand Check - Look at your hands. Do they look weird? How many fingers do you see? If there are more or less than 5 per hand, you must be dreaming.
4. Changing Text- Look at some text, look away and look back at the same text you looked at. Did it change? If you see the text change from what it originally was then you’re dreaming.
Some of these may be embarrassing to do in public. There are other RCs that you can do in public without people noticing that you even did a reality check.
How many reality checks should I use?
Most people usually use two or three reality checks. Have your very favorite one, and then another one or two as back up. This is quite simply because they don’t always work, so your back up ones work as a sort of safety net.
Which reality check works best then?
Different people find different reality checks work best for them. To start off with, you should pick the ones that appeal to you most, and then replace them if they keep on working for you in your dreams.
When should I take my reality checks?
The main time you should take your reality checks is quite simply whenever you remember. However, there are a number of times where taking a reality check can prove to be very beneficial. So you could also try taking your reality checks:
- Every time you wake up
- Every time you’re talking or thinking about dreaming/lucid dreaming.
- Whenever you feel afraid
- Whenever you feel something is strange or out of place
- Whenever you see one of your dream signs
Remember that dreams could often reflect what is in waking life. This is something you can take advantage of. If you know there are habits or common events that can be found in your waking life, then it would be a good idea to associate reality checks with them. For example, if you always did an RC every time you see a cloud in your waking time, then there is a reasonable chance that you’ll do that RC in your dreams if you also see a cloud then. Associations like this can be very helpful when you start taking reality checks.
I never take reality checks in my dreams – should I give them up?
No. Even if you never take your reality checks in your dreams, they’re still helping you to question your reality during the daytime, which helps a lot with lucid dreaming. Keep on taking them.
How long does it take a for my reality checks to show up in my dreams?
Unfortunately there’s no set length for this. It varies from person to person. However, the more often you take your reality checks, the more likely they will appear in your dreams.
My reality checks keep on working in my dreams, what should I do?
First off, when taking your reality checks, you have to expect them to not to work properly and to tell you are dreaming. Remember, dreams are based off what you expected – if you expect the reality checks to tell you are awake then that’s what they’ll do.
If they continue to function properly for you, even after that, then I suggest you try using different reality checks.
My reality check tells me I am dreaming, but I still think everything is normal. Why?
Our minds often works differently in our dreams in that extraordinary things can happen but we would still think nothing much of it. It can put a hamper on RCs since your mind might still be convinced you are not dreaming even after it fails. What you can do to handle this problem is to employ different RCs to increase the chance of screwing up an RC and realizing it. Also, once an RCs fails consistently but at the same time you don’t realize it, this could be a sign that you should start using another RC.
Can reality checks be useful, even after I’m aware that I’m dreaming?
Yes, absolutely. If you take them throughout the lucid dream, you will lower the chances of you losing lucidity. This is especially helpful if you wish to explore the dreamscape, where it’s easy to forget you’re dreaming.
They can also be used for simple amusement. It can be a very interesting experience to put one of your fingers through your own hand or to have eight fingers on one hand.