Peter wrote:What does it take...
Peter, A couple of thoughts.
First, you're totally on to something with the "stressers". Thanks for mentioning this, because this happened to me just last night in the first of two lucid dreams I had. Stresers seem to me to have a lot of potential as a good dreamsign to kick in lucidity--although, man, that dream you had of having almost drowned certainly was a stresser!
Here's my take on WBTBs and WILDS (and I'm taking this more or less from the LaBerge book). WBTB is the overall technique you do after you've been sleeping for a while. You get up sometime in the wee hours and stay awake for a certain amount of time (--Sorry, you know this already!). Anyway, WILD (or MILD) is the technique you use once you go back to bed to try to induce lucidity. So, getting up and being conscious for awhile just primes the pump--you try to jump start the luciditymobile with your personal method of choice (WILD or MILD).
Any luck so far on the doing reality checks on daylight? If that's something you're noticing, I'd say definitely keep working on it!
I want to create a different post to ask some questions about what I've experienced in these lucid dreams I've had in the last couple of nights. It seems like I've really turned a corner here in my ability to induce lucid dreaming (although I have a feeling it'll be temporary).
But one thing that keeps coming to mind is another item that, I believe, Stephen LaBerge mentions: that having just one lucid dream (no matter how it comes on) increases your chances dramatically for having more of them. In the case of lucid dream, familiarity doesn't breed contempt--it breeds better chances for lucid dreaming. I can honestly say that this seems to be happening to me right now.
Reality checks and dreamsigns still remain elusive and a mystery to me, though. Last night in my second "lucid" dream, placing a bottle of 7-Up on a dream porch kicked me into a type of lucidity where I started willfully controlling things, but wasn't necessarily lucid per se. At least there wasn't that typical "rush" that accompanies the onset, and the overall feeling was very different than the "classically" lucid dream I had early Sunday morning. That soda bottle is strange, because, well, first I don't even drink soda--and I never liked 7-Up to begin with (now, if it had been a beer on the other hand...) But why such a mundane dream object would kick in lucidity in anybody's guess. And was it the bottle itself or the act of setting it down on this "porch"? It puzzling, but very cool in its own odd way--and I realize I need to think about all this a lot more.
Sorry for all the blather. Hope some of this is interesting.