How to remember your dreams

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Dreams play a significant role in our life. Although it’s tempting to think they are just random images and stories that form while we’re asleep, most dreams have some meaning to them. By understanding the subconscious mind, we can better understand ourselves.

Why are dreams important?

Dreaming can alert you to the thoughts and feelings you may not be aware of during the day. Often when we process emotions or events that occur during the day, we may hold back all of our feelings. Those feelings, while unrecognized, can come out during sleep.

Stress is a natural feeling that we all experience at some point in our lives. If something is particularly stressful, it can present itself when we dream. Recalling dreams can help you understand stressful problems with family, everyday events and deeper past psychology.

How can you remember dreams?

How you sleep is important when it comes to retaining dreams. Minimal sleep that is broken up from various interruptions is not productive when trying to remember dreams. To give your brain the best chance of remembering, proper sleep hygiene is important.

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Get a good night’s sleep

Most people are aware that the optimal amount of time for sleeping is 8 hours. For the best chance of an uninterrupted full 8 hours of sleep, there are a few helpful sleeping tips recommended by doctors. Turning off all the lights so that your room is as dark as possible is advised. Avoiding excessive alcohol or caffeine before bed will help you fall asleep and stay asleep longer. Earplugs are also recommended for those who live in a noisy environment.

Keep a journal

Dreams are most vivid upon first waking up in the morning. Before reaching for your phone or getting a cup of coffee, try writing down what first comes to you in a notebook beside the bed. By keeping a notebook next to you, it can be the first thing you do in the morning.

Many people who are just beginning to consciously remember dreams may not remember the whole dream. This is normal. Random images or thoughts or bits of conversation may come easier than the whole sequence of events. Even if you’re not sure why you’re remembering something, write it down anyway. It may jog your memory so that you can further discover what your brain was thinking during the night.

A dream journal can be used at any time during the night. Regardless if you are lucky enough to sleep a full 8 hours or whether you wake up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom, jotting down whatever it is that you remember or even feel like you remember, can be beneficial when learning how to remember your dreams.

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Conclusion

The harder we try to remember our dreams, the more distant they can seem. Sometimes looking “past” the specifics of a dream can better help you understand what happened while you were sleeping. The importance of remembering dreams does not necessarily have to do with the dream itself. The feelings that surround the dream are usually what’s most important.