I am one of those people, along with my twin brother, who have had the rare (I'm told) ability to naturally have lucid dreams all my life.

That's not to say I can just have these dreams easily and at will, nor could I always realize I was dreaming in every dream . But I'd say when I was a little kid (I'm 23 now, we're talking in the ages 5 through 13 type range generally) I would say 7 or 8 times out of ten of dreams I'd remember I'd go lucid and be able to affect things- mostly stand up to dream monsters as 99% my lucid dreams started out as nightmares.

Plus I can't do it as well or very much anymore, probably cuz I have terrible sleeping habits (it's currently 3am right now where I am ) Which is why i was first looking for lucid dreams stuff when i found this site & board.

For me, i noticed my dream signs are similar to the electrical systems failure. I would flick on the lightin a pitch black room and the light istelf would go on, and be bright, but it wouldn't illuminate the roon at all. This was always a sure sign for me it was nightmare (since it's always dark in nightmares...)

Another sign of mine was dark circles around people's eyes. As a kid it somehow inidicated to my young mind that any family and friends in dreams that had these were monster-posessd or were monsters in disguise.

Just looking at somone with eyes like this would frighten me like nothing else. Many a nightmare I had had noting scary going on (and I wasn't lucid) and suddenly a familiy member ot friend would step in front of me and look into my eyes with their 'creepy' eyes Which in retrospect just looked like that were sleepy (with prominent bags under their eyes.)

With this being a common plauge in my nightmares as a child, I actually developed ways to fight these things.

A) I found that when I scrunched my face and eyebows like was really mad about something, even looking straight these 'monsters' I wouldn't be afraid until I lifted my eyebrows- Later on in life I was able to not be afraid even without my eyes scrunched. *Closing my eyes to avoid looking at scary things wouldn't help-- sometimes I'd see right through my eyelids!

B) I found a way to wake up... I think... I might have just been inciting false waking, but i would turn my back to the frightening imagery and squint my eyes shut and start to open then, as if I was pretending to struggle to get them open. Eventually they would open and I'd be in my bed. In retrospect I don't know if I'd awaken for real or not.

C) One way to wake would just be to scare myself. Yep, why get out of nightmare by going along and getting scared? Well for a period of time I was having so many lucid dreams so often sometimes I'd just be a little board with it and say screw it and just wake myself up in case I forgot I was dreaming and then got scared (if dreams are gonna scare me they were going to do it on MY terms).

-Commonly I would just look at the draked-circled eyed people you would look at me with a sinister glare. I would get scared and awaken.

-I'd would look in the mirror and contort my face. Using this dreamsign type method (whenever I havent been sure if it's a dream or not I look in the mirror and do a mild version of this) I would make sure I would make my face look scary (sometimes developing dark circles around my eyes!) and boom! I'm awake in my bed.

Of couse when I've become lucid I havent always just tried to wake myself up. I've tried flying a few times, sex once or twice in my puberty days, but mostly (remember most of my dreams I'm lucid in are potential nightmares) was to go total martial arts on my dream monsters, whatever form they take.

Most commonly I'd look at the scary object and declare with full indignant confidence. "This is a dream!" With a wry smile to say 'oh monsters, you're screwed now!' drop into a fighting stance and kicks the monster's butts. Ah, memories.

Okay pardon my long-windedness. I'd like to post some actual experiences of mine but I'll save that for adifferent post I guess.