Sunday, January 26, 2014

On Dreaming: The NMB Effect

I've discovered a strange effect, that, as far as I can tell (mostly because 99% of my audience declines to tell me anything, let alone what they think) is unique to me. For the sake of clarity and brevity, I'll call it the Not-My-Bed (or NMB) effect.

For someone who doesn't do much travelling and has few social relationships, I spend a fair amount of time sleeping in someone else's bed. The simple cause of this is my house- and pet-sitting gig, which more often than not has me living in someone else's home for (at least) a couple of days at a time. Sure, it's usually a guest room and bed that I sleep in, but it's still NMB.

When dreaming in my bed, events rarely happen more than twice, as in duplicated exactly the same, like rereading a passage in a book, immediately after you read it the first time. However, when I'm not in my bed (where the name comes from), it happens significantly more times.

Now, these aren't just repeated events scattered through the night, or through the dream. These repeated passages are consecutive, right after another, right away, so close that sometimes they actually overlap.

As I'm writing this, I'm recently woken up from this effect, spending a few days housesitting, and the scene repeated itself about six times. Some of the repeats were more like stutters at the beginning of words, so I'm hardpressed to count them as seperate repeats.

Immediately upon waking, I can usually count them, before my recall's halflife (not dissimilar to radition) starts to tear the details from me.

If you have any strange phenomena happen regularly under atypical situations, I'd love to hear about it, especially if they occur in NMB situations.

4 comments:

  1. I don't quite understand what you mean by repeating event. If you mean by dream narrative, I cannot recall any time where something repeated in a dream as with stuttering. However, in my own bed, I have recently experienced being partly awake, and having undescribable dream-like sensations being uncomforabtle and annoying ( i can't explain adequately), somehow passing in front of me, often of a subject (like the repeated actions I do in a video game) passing over me and repeating. I wave my arms to try and whisk them away, almost as though this dream exists physically in front of my face. The waving and the dream sensation keep repeating and bother me for a long time, they can be of any theme like a proper dream, but I am mostly aware that I am in bed, awake-ish, and bothered. No matter the theme, the feeling is allways "bothered" and wanting it to go away. My specific example will be the sensation of being frustarted in a video game where I play as an alien running around. I will see the same scene of the alien jumping/running and it will just repeat. It has associations to a narrative or the dream it would ordinarily be, but it never materialises as a dream. I will try to wave this image/sensation away. it is fully animated, maybe abstact, maybe it isn't even visual as much as a pure association of all the elements that make up the game.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Very few of my dreams are abstract. Nearly all of them are linear, straightforward, and storylike. Even when I get the repeating events, the entire dream still spells out a story.

      Let me try to explain in another way:

      Imagine yourself reading a book, but instead of turning the page when you're done reading the pages that the book is open to, instead you go back and read those two pages again. Sometimes, you start reading those two pages again before you've come to the end.

      Imagine yourself reading a book, but instead of turning the page when you're done reading the pages that the bo-- Imagine-- Imagine yourself reading a book, but instead of-- Imagine yourself reading a book, but instead of turning the page when you're done reading the pages that the book is open to, instead you go back and read those two pages again. Sometimes, you start reading those two pages again before you've come to the-- Imagine yourself reading a book, but instead of turning the page when you're done reading the pages that the book is open to, instead you go back and read those two pages again. Sometimes, you start reading those two pages again before you've come to the end.

      Does that help?

      Delete
  2. I don't ever really experience repetition in that way. Sounds like something unique to your psychology. :)

    But I read of someone on one forum who managed to trick themselves into a WILD by laying perfectly still to mimic sleeping. That means no twitching, no scratching itches. Nothing. Those itches and movements are usually subconscious cues to your brain to tell you youre still awake, and if you dont respond to them, your body assumes you're already in dreamland. Apparently you also have to keep your mind busy in order to not completely fall asleep and enter a WILD state.

    I tried this myself but all it does for me is become a natural sleep aide. If I lay perfectly still, I just...fall asleep. Which is wonderful if I am unable to go to bed, but not so much if I want to try and WILD. I wonder if this could be used by other people or if this was unique to that person?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am seriously jealous. WILDing never works for me. I've reviewed it in articles past, so I'm familiar with it, but for me, my head just keeps spinning, and I never actually fall asleep. I've actually stayed up a whole night, just waiting for the WILD to kick in, and... nothing. I just didn't get any sleep.

      Delete