To be honest, I'm not sure if this is in exactly the right category - it could also go in Lucid Experiences, but it does have to do with attaining lucidity and reality checks so I posted it here.

I'm only just getting back into lucid dreaming for the first time in almost a year after having a few spontaneous lucid dreams over the past few months (drastic life changes led to a nine-month-long depressive episode that killed my interest in more than just lucid dreaming). Though I'd been working mostly on rebuilding dream recall because my foggy state of mind kept making attempts at reality checks difficult. My mental state is much better now than it was at my lowest points, but by now I'm not doing as many reality checks because I keep forgetting.

So, I haven't been doing reality checks nearly as much as I used to - mostly the blow-through-nose, counting fingers or fingers-through-palm reality checks. However, last night I had a DILD that wasn't spontaneous (or at least the lucidity wasn't - I attained it by RC'ing first), but I didn't utilise any of the reality checks I'd been doing in waking life. Instead, when I questioned reality in the dream, I didn't know how to check if I was dreaming because my difficulty with mindfully doing reality checks in waking life had given me a constant worry that the RC's I'd been using might stop being reliable in dreams. However, I'd recently gotten back into Doctor Who since the newest season has started airing, and my dream self randomly remembered that the Doctor had two hearts, because of the inhuman biology of Time Lords.

So, my dream self spontaneously made up a new reality check before I even became properly lucid: humans don't have two hearts, but if I'm dreaming then I can change my physical form into something non-human. So, I can give myself two hearts; if I have two hearts, then I'm dreaming. If I have only one, then I'm probably in reality.

Then my dream self tested this new "a-ha!" moment by feeling my heartbeat with my hand; I felt heartbeats on either side of my sternum: Two hearts...I'm dreaming - BAM, lucidity! (After my improvised reality check succeeded I also did the finger reality check to double check/reinforce the lucidity, which worked because I grew a sixth and seventh finger during the check.)

The LD felt really long, and the dream faded in and out numerous times, so I did the "two hearts" reality check about six or seven times to reassure myself that I was still in the dream. It still worked without fail, so if the chance that it was a fluke is still high, then it would have to be that success of the reality check was a fluke contained to just one dream in a certain context. I'm not exactly sure.

I was wondering if anyone else had their non-lucid self get creative and improvise successful reality checks in dreams before - and if these unusual RC's had worked. Even if they're just suggestions that have or haven't been tested yet, let's build a list of unusual reality checks that might work for DILDs.

(I think I'll make this check a part of my regular RCs to see if I can test it in my dreams again.)

(If anyone does want to test the "two-hearts/Time Lord" check, feeling for your heartbeat isn't too much trouble and doesn't take long, so go ahead. However, it is something I haven't had any more chance to try out, and I thought of it as a biology-based reality check because one of my lucid dream goals for years has been to transform into non-human creatures (to the point where my non-lucid/ dream self will attempt it in normal dreams), so I'd built up a lot of intention for biological transformation that probably made the check easier. A reality check concerning non-human biology probably works best if you're used to being able to transform in dreams.)