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Since I'm relatively new at this, I'm relying on becoming conscious within my dream to become lucid before I try anything more difficult. I do reality checks frequently (most of the time I look at my hands and try to push one through the other or through a wall, if I'm at school I'll look in my text book, look away, and look back to see if it changed, etc), but for some reason in my dreams I rarely do them. I will perform one only if something seems to be off, however there are no talking pigs or anything crazy like that in my dreams. I can't recognize dream signs because there seem to be none, at least that I can remember. It's almost like things go about as normal and the events that take place make sense to me. Sometimes even when I wake up I'm confused as to where I am because things are so realistic. I guess I'm either not good at recognizing dream signs or there aren't very many things that could be considered one. How could I improve my ability to recognize dream signs?
I'm a beginner as well (so take my advice with a grain of salt!), but it helps me to be able to recognize emotional cues. When I feel irritated/frustrated for seemingly no reason, I remember to ask myself "Why?" and that generally leads to me becoming conscious. Also, I justify dream situations a lot so everything seems "normal" to me too. Lately, I've been trying to use these moments of justification to induce lucidity. It worked this morning for the first time!
I have had almost no success in recognizing dream signs - and I see them a lot. The only dream sign that will work for me is breathing under water. That doesn't happen often. I have found other LD techniques to be much more successful. Maybe give some of the others a try. Each person is different and what works for one may not work for another. It took me quite awhile to find a consistent technique. Good luck.
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