It’s important to learn how to better remember your dreams, after all what’s the point of lucid dreaming if you can’t remember the experiences? There are some simple things you can do to improve your dream recall.
It’s important to make sure your dream recall is in top shape. Remembering your dreams is known in the Lucid Dreaming community as ‘Dream Recall’. It means the same thing, remembering your dreams.
Remembering dreams comes down to this; Writing in your dream diary, believing you’ll remember, and practice. The most important thing is that you write dreams down in your dream journal.
Techniques and tips for improving dream recall
You can either choose to do all of these, or just one or two. These are our best tips, techniques and methods for remembering more of your dreams naturally, every morning. After that, we’ll look at some extra tips, and some common questions people have about remembering dreams.
1: Write down your dreams as soon as you wake up
By writing in your dream journal as soon as you wake up, you don’t give yourself time to forget your dreams. If you start getting up, making breakfast and then trying to remember, you won’t. It will be very difficult because the brain is not yet trained to remember dreams. Try and do it before anything else, before even getting out of bed if possible.
It’s all about training your brain to remember your dreams as soon as you wake up, and in order to start doing this, you need to be able to have it as the ‘first thing’ you think about when waking up. This can’t be stressed enough, whatever you do, write ‘something’ in your dream journal every morning.
2: DECIDE to remember your dreams more
This is a psychological tip more than anything else. Tell yourself every night before you go to sleep that you WILL remember your dreams. Even if you don’t at first, keep telling yourself that, and after a few days or weeks, you will.
This is because your mind picks up on these messages you’re sending it, and actually takes them on board, and makes more of an effort to remember your dreams. By doing this enough, you’ll find yourself thinking much more clearly in the mornings about your dreams and what happened. It will get easier for you.
So there we have the main ways to remember your dreams more often and with more clarity. It is mainly about writing in your dream journal, as this will be the key in training your brain to remember more about your nocturnal habits. Keep going with that, and you’ll see results soon enough.
3: Get higher quality sleep
Keep yourself healthy, and keep your sleep patterns normal and regular. In order to have the best dreaming experience, you might want to look at the bigger picture, and improve your overall sleep and health. Do some exercise, eat the right foods, and most importantly, get enough high quality sleep.
This doesn’t mean go to bed at 3 in the morning and wake up at noon the next day, it means go to bed in the evening when you’re tired and wake up in the morning preferably before 8-9.
The body naturally wakes up at this time, but by progressively staying up later and later you push your body clock round so that it needs more sleep the next morning, and you lay in until 12. It’s not healthy, and it can affect your dreaming as well as your overall well being. If you’re serious about Lucid Dreaming and improving your health and dreams, try and establish a regular sleep pattern.
To start shifting it, the easiest and quickest way is to set an alarm for the new time for example 8AM. Get up at this time every day no matter how tired you are, and in a few days you’ll find you get tired enough to sleep at 10-11 at night. You can quickly change your body clock and sleep patterns this way.
Getting low quality sleep or sleep that is broken into several fragments means you’ll get less REM sleep, which is when most dreams happen! By suffering low quality sleep you not only feel worse the next day, but you don’t remember as many dreams!
Get rid of noises, lights, and anything that could disturb or distract you at night. This is the first step to having a better nights sleep. You could also try a sleep optimisation program to make sure you get the highest quality of deep sleep.
4: Use a dream anchor
This is part of a neuro linguistic programming technique (NLP). Choose an object in your room that you see every time you wake up and tell yourself ‘Whenever I see that object, I WILL remember my dreams’.
After a few days or weeks of doing this, you’ll notice that you actually DO start remembering more dreams as a result. You’re training your mind to remember dreams whenever you see that object, and it’s a powerful way to boost dream recall!
5: Don’t open your eyes at first
Opening your eyes when you wake up is a good way to forget the dreams you just had. Unless they were really vivid, chances are the images of your room and the physical world will just distract you from your dreams, and stop you remembering them.
Try to wait a few minutes after waking up before opening your eyes, so you have time to think about your previous nights dreams, what happened and what you’re going to write in your journal as soon as you open your eyes. Really think with a focus before opening your eyes!
Common problems and questions about dream recall
Here we’re going to talk about some commonly asked questions about remembering your dreams, and how you can best improve your recall. If your question isn’t here, please let us know!
How quickly can I boost my recall?
This depends on how much effort you put in, and how much time you spend doing it. Like anything, you need to practice it, and get better and better over time. Most of us aren’t good at remembering dreams naturally, because we just very rarely practice it.
Lucid dreamers should make it a part of their daily routine to think about their previous nights dreams, before going about their day, and you should too! Being connected with your dream life is very important and will help you stay more grounded and happy throughout your day.
Does everyone dream?
Yes. With a few rare exceptions, in the case of those with rare sleep disorders, everyone dreams every night. The difference is that not everyone REMEMBERS their dreams, and there lies the confusion. People sometimes assume that because they can’t remember their dreams, they DIDN’T dream, but that’s not true.
Can I remember a dream I had two years ago?
It depends on your memory, personally. It also depends on the dream, but there are some ways you can try to remember a SPECIFIC dream, provided you know at least a little bit about the dream. If you can remember a fragment, sound, feeling, location etc then you might be able to recreate the dream memory:
- Focus on what you DO remember about the dream: This can be a sound, sight, person etc. Really try and feel that again
- Relax your focus and see what you naturally feel next: This is the hard part, especially if the dream was a long time ago
- Let your mind drift into seemingly random other thoughts: If you get lost or confused, focus on the first fragment again; the first thing you remember about your dream
- Write down anything you feel, hear or remember in your mind: Refer back to it, and try and remember more and more of the old dream at a set time each day
- If you remember a fragment of the dream, such as being on a beach, go onto Google images or YouTube and search for that thing. Watch videos of people walking on beaches, for example and it might trigger other parts of the dream memory you thought you’d forgotten.
Does vitamin B6 help with dream recall?
Yes! A great way to increase your dream recall and remember more of your dreams is to take something called Vitamin B6. This vitamin really boosts your memory and brain power, especially for remembering your dreams. It’s best to take it with a multivitamin, just to make sure you’re all balanced out and healthy.
Useful resources for remembering dreams
A good all round memory boosting vitamin like vitamin B6 will be a good thing to get but there are also some other things that might help you remember your dreams better:
- Sleep tracks (sleep optimization program) if you’re sleeping better, you’ll dream and remember dreams better.
- Using a dream pillow with scents that help you relax
- A custom dream diary for lucid dreamers
- The super memory pack of binaural beats (special soundwaves that make your brain fall into specific states. One of these can be enhanced memory, dream vividness and clarity)