How To Hack Your Dreams

Sure, we know there are plenty of nap hacks and sleep hacks out there — but what about dream hacks? Can you really teach yourself how to remember your dreams better, dream more vividly, and even control your dreams? According to some, yep — and that's where BuzzFeed's new “Dream Hacks” video comes in. It offers five tips on how to get the most out of your REM cycle,

The video is appropriately bizarre — after all, dream logic does not at all resemble real life logic — featuring a creepy, mustachioed dude who claims to be your high school principal (but is he really?). Although a few of the tricks he presents work just fine as normal sleep hacks (sticking a little sachet of lavender and camomile in your pillow, for example, may help you relax and get to sleep easier), what we're really looking at here is a sort of primer for lucid dreaming. I've only had one lucid dream in my entire life, but from that single experience, I can safely say that being able to control your dreams? Is pretty dang cool. Just sayin'.

The hacks seen here won't guarantee you a lucid dream every time you drop off; they will, however, give you a place to start if you're interested in training yourself to do it (because let's face it: No one wants to dream about their teeth falling out). Check out three of my favorites below, and scroll down to watch the whole video. Sleep well!

1. Journal Your Dreams

I know, I know — keeping a dream journal sounds not only silly, but also hackneyed. But writing as much about your dreams down as you remember immediately upon waking will help cement the details of what happened in them, enabling you to recall them better later on. This, in turn, will help you get better at remembering your dreams overall. Furthermore, it might help you see the connections between your dreams and what's going on in your day-to-day life — which might give you some insight into how your brain is trying to solve some of your bigger problems while you sleep. Lucid dreamers also often use dream journals as a training tool, so if you're interested in trying to control your dreams, writing things down is a good place to start.

2. Check Your Reality

Again, it's going to sound kind of weird, but apparently giving yourself a reality check every so often while you're awake — basically, taking a moment to say to yourself, “I'm awake, I'm here, I can feel things, I'm aware” — will help you learn how to distinguish your dreams from your waking state. Once you're aware that you're dreaming, it becomes easier to control your dreams. According to the video, lucid dreamers suggest performing as many as 12 reality checks a day.

3. Eat More Cheese

I rarely need an excuse to eat more cheese, because cheese is the best — but for the curious, dairy products apparently make you dream more vividly. A British study from 2005 even determined that eating different types of cheeses results in different types of dreams. The truth really is stranger than fiction, isn't it?

Watch the full video below for two more wacky dream hacks:

Images: splityarn/Flickr; BuzzFeedBlue/YouTube (3)