if I stop giving up and just keep my eyes closed for an hour (after my body is tingly) does that guarantee sleep paralysis and hypnagogia?
Sleep paralysis and hypnagogia is just a side affect some have and shouldnt be the goal. Not all who do WILD get those things (I very rarely do). Anyway, they are unnecessarily and all sleep paralyses means is that your body has relaxed enough, it doesnt necessarily mean ones mind has enough for dreaming.
Hypnagogia is an indication that one is heading along the right track to dreaming and may enter a LD at any time but once again it isnt necessary to LD and many go straight into a LD without it during a WILD (I only get hypnagogia about once in every 30 LDs). I suggest to focus on your actual goal which is to have a LD rather then getting off in all the detours along the way to which you still will need to have a LD from
Somehow, I naturally wake up 4-5 hours later each night without using an alarm clock. I usually go to the bathroom, stay up for a few minutes then go back to bed (around 5 AM)
I close my eyes, I have no idea what to think about - so I just count or think about random stuff. Eventually, after not moving an inch for like 10+ minutes. My left hand becomes paralyzed and whole body is tingly when I slightly try to move it
Cause you havent been up for long, makes it easy to hit a good state of relaxation fast and hence then start feeling stuff.
Thinking about random stuff often will lead to one falling asleep so I personally dont recommend it if you are trying to WILD, its what your mind is used to doing before you fall asleep and will probably just end up falling asleep unawarely as its its normal habit to do. Counting may help some but it certainly doesnt help me at all as all it does is stimulate my mind too much and helps prevent me from going into a dream/WILD state. That "may" be your issue.
I suggest to relax your mind a bit more then counting.. try doing something like just focusing on your breath going in and out, your chest raising and falling, watch your body falling asleep... and see if that helps more. With every now and then reminding yourself that you are going to go into a dream. I suggest to do this in a position in which isnt your normal sleep position (that should aid to keep you from just falling into a normal sleep).. many find they have a LD more easily if they do this on thier back (if that isnt your normal sleep position).
If that dont work and you ended up falling asleep.. do something with a slightly more focus next time eg watching your breath.. and breathing in throu the nose and then out throu the mouth
, listen to the breath.. till you find yourself in a dream.
If that dont work and you fell asleep .. add even more focus into your attempt (you need to hit the right balance with your mind! not too focused to allow a dream state but not too less focused). I myself find other then just doing breath watching alone, that also doing a single word chant can be helpful .. thinking one word on the inbreath and another word one on the outbreath. Many use mantras for that (many of my WiLDS have been using dream yoga techniques using mantras)... but it could simply be thinking something like "awake" "dream" in time to the breathing in and out.
Most importantly you may have to have patience. You could enter into a WILD fast but for some of us it can take a while. (at times it has taken me up to 45mins, maybe even 1 hr). Dont thou expect it to take long thou seeing you are doing this in the middle of the night when already very relaxed and sleepy, you already are half in the right state to have one then, its just a matter of getting your brain in the right state.
and I give up.
Unfortunately that can be the very point in which one is about to LD. When one hits that really tired, I need to go to sleep point. Due to that I prefer to only give up after I'd tried for certain length of time without success (that being said I dont clock watch as that would put one off.. but guess what is around 1 hr and if Ive lucked up by then.. I only give up at that point).
Quite a few times when I pushed myself past the "I want to give up point" due to feeling too tired, Ive almost right away gone into a LD.
I think many hit the point where they feel too tired and then just go to sleep, just when they'd been about to have a LD. It can take some determination.
Hopefully you will find it not to hard thou if you experiment with the advice I gave. You are a good way there, you just need to let your mind go into a dream and not loose focus. Work out how much focus you need.
Does anyone have any advice or something? - if I stop giving up and just keep my eyes closed for an hour (after my body is tingly) does that guarantee sleep paralysis and hypnagogia?
This stuff shouldnt take an hour but it all depends on someone knowing how to hit their sweet spot one could say. Nothing is guaranted if a person cant get themselves in the right state. (I suggest dont focus on sleep paralyses.. you could actually go into a LD in which your are paralysed and not even know you are in one.. so forget about that as it could hinder rather then help).
It does often take experimentation with to know what is the best way to WILD for you. WILD is such an individual thing, many ways to do it. Think of your failures as good experiences too as they show you what doesnt work well for you.
You need to learn to start to let your mind drift but then be able to rein in the drift so not to loose control (starting to go into little daydreams while trying is good as long as you keep becoming aware again that you are trying to LD and your real body is in bed). If your senses start splitting in two places at once, you are moving into a dream.