Everyone dreams. Some people remember their dreams, with lots of detail. Others remember so few dreams, they are convinced they don't dream at all. Maybe this is you!
What's the point of trying to remember your dreams? Dreams are an extension of your conscious thoughts, feelings, beliefs and challenges. You are the author of your dreams. They reflect the knowledge of your inner psyche. You are working on your life issues while you sleep, and dreams are a way for your unconscious to share this wisdom with your conscious self. You can support this problem-solving process by remembering your dreams and making sense of them in an intentional way. Check out my next blog on how to analyze your own dreams for messages, insights and help problem-solving your life issues.
3 Ways to Remember Your Dreams
Write them down in a dream journal.
The best way to remember your dreams is to write them down. Start with a detail you remember, however small. For example, let's say you can remember being in a car. Write down, "I am in a car."
Next, ask yourself questions that will elicit more detail. Questions like, "Am I the driver or passenger? Am I alone or with someone else? Can I see any objects in the car? Is the car moving or parked? Can I see the scenery outside the car? What colour is the car? Whose car is it?", and so on. Record the answers and continue to ask yourself questions. Eventually, these memories will begin to create a dream or dream fragment.
Wake up slowly and focus on sensations.
When you wake up, set your intention to hover in the sleep/wake stage for a few moments. Don't jump out of bed immediately. Instead, keep your eyes shut and focus on your last memories, feelings and sensations. The idea here is to transition slowly to the waking state so you don't loose the memories. See what comes to you, and record it in your dream journal later, or even better, keep a note pad by your bed to record a few things in point form to help your recall later.
Practice memory-improvement techniques.
Think about a room that you know well, such as a room in your childhood home or your office. Mentally move about that room, recalling as many details as you can. Note every nook and cranny and objects in that room. Remember the wall colour, the wall hangings, trinkets, light fixtures, and so on. Practice this for a few minutes every day to improve your memory.
Before you know it, you will be remembering your dreams! This will allow you the opportunity to analyze your dreams and gain insights that your psyche knows, but your waking self does not.
Sweet dreams and jellybeans!
Tina d’Entremont is a Registered Counselling Therapist based in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. She has been analyzing her own dreams and helping friends do the same for years. She uses dream work with clients in psychotherapy, and is excited about bringing her dream work expertise to the masses.