We all have those friends who talk about their amazing dreams, but some of us struggle even to have them in the first place. If you are reading this article, I’m guessing you are one of those people. We get this question all the time: “How do I dream?” Well, it’s all about creating the perfect environment to stimulate your thoughts just before you fall asleep. In this guide, we’re going to provide you with the most in-depth information on how to dream from our team of dream experts. So, without further ado, let’s start dreaming.
Your daily activities and thoughts are likely to influence your dreams for the night. As humans, we can practice dreaming using a method called dream incubation. But remember, this is different from lucid dreams, where you can influence and control your dreams while you’re asleep. Yes, it’s possible.
But first, here are some headline facts about dreaming:
- You can have more than one dream per night. In fact, on average, everyone is thought to dream between 3 and 6 times per night! That’s a lot of meanings to uncover.
- Although some dreams can seem like they last all night, they generally last between 10-20 minutes.
- 9 out of 10 dreams are forgotten by the time you get out of bed. You might want to use our dream journal.
- Dreams can help you unlock and store long-term memories.
What is a dream?
Put simply, dreams consist of narratives, emotions, and a continuous series of images that our subconscious mind creates while we sleep. From the assimilation and processing of information during the day to the unlocking of different parts of the brain and the development of long-term memories, dreams can significantly impact your life and overall well-being.
Numerous theories and experts have attempted to elucidate the purpose of dreams. Some suggest that they mirror unconscious desires and thoughts, while others propose that they result from random signals during sleep, assist in the processing of daily information, or serve as a form of therapeutic experience.
What we truly understand is that dreams may aid in the consolidation of memories, preparation for forthcoming challenges, the simulation of real-life experiences, the enhancement of cognitive abilities, the reflection of unconscious mental processes in a psychoanalytic manner, the provision of a unique state of consciousness that intertwines the present, past, and future, and the creation of a psychological space to reconcile complex ideas and maintain psychological equilibrium. Pretty cool, isn’t it?
So now you have a better grasp of what a dream is. Let’s delve into our top 10 tips on how to train your brain to recall your dreams. Since everyone dreams at night, all we need to do is enhance our recall abilities, and we’ll begin experiencing more vivid and astonishing dreams during the night.
Manifestation is a thing. You need to tell yourself that you will start remembering your dreams just before you fall asleep. It may seem silly, and think it may not actually work, but this simple step can help train your subconscious mind and signal to your brain to remember the dreams. Make sure you do this every night as part of your nighttime routine and in a few weeks, this process should start to work.
- No more alarms
Now we know this isn’t possible due to work commitments and early starts, but for the best chance of remembering your sleep, you will need to wake up after REM sleep. Imagine this, you are in the middle of a vivid dream, but suddenly all you hear is your loud alarm clock. Boom, you have leant over to turn it off within seconds and guess what? Your dream has disappeared. To help with this, make sure you go to bed early enough that you may not need an alarm clock. If you wake up more gradually without the lights and noises of an alarm, you will wake up more gradually out of your sleep cycles and are more likely to remember your dreams.
- Avoid sleeping pills, alcohol & coffee before bed
Now this may seem counterintuitive but the people who don’t sleep as sound, remember more dreams. I can see you thinking why is that from here? It is because when you wake up multiple times at night it is usually after a sleep cycle. So if you are using sleeping pills or alcohol to sleep, consider skipping them a few nights to see if it helps you remember your dreams. Just remember to consult your doctor if you are skipping your meds!
- Down that water
You know that annoying feeling when you wake up in the middle of the night and are desperate to go to the toilet? Well for dreaming, that’s good. You will usually wake up throughout the night when your bladder is full when you’re coming out of REM sleep. And since you’re awake at the right time, you’re more likely to remember what you were just dreaming. Annoying, but you might just remember those dream details.
- Put down the nightcap
Alcohol tends to play havoc with our sleeping patterns. But not because of the lack of sleep, but more because it suppresses our REM sleep. So put down the beer, pass on the wine, and improve your REM sleep.
- Add these foods in your diet
You might want to try eating foods rich in tryptophan. This can help your dream intensity! This is found in foods such as chicken, soybeans, turkey and tuna. Good for your body and good for your dreams. Win-win. Anecdotal cheese, spicy foods and large meals before bedtime have also been associated with vivid dreams. Experiment with your diet to see what works for you.
- Improve Your Sleep Hygiene:
Getting a good night’s sleep is essential for having meaningful dreams. Aim for 7-9 hours of sleep, maintain a consistent sleep schedule, and create a peaceful sleep environment with darkness, a cool temperature, and minimal noise. Quality sleep sets the stage for richer dream experiences.
- Stay Active
Engage in regular physical activity to enhance the quality of your sleep. Exercise can promote deeper, more restorative slumber and may contribute to more vibrant and memorable dream experiences.
- Manage Stress
High stress levels can lead to poor sleep and sometimes result in nightmares. Practising stress-reduction techniques such as deep breathing, meditation, or yoga can help you relax and achieve a more peaceful state of mind before sleep.
- Learn from Your Dreams
Pay attention to recurring themes or symbols in your dreams. Your dreams may hold personal significance and offer insights into your subconscious mind. By reflecting on and learning from your dreams, you can gain a better understanding of yourself and your emotions. If you want to find out what your dreams mean. Try our expert dream interpreter now
Remember that the journey to enhance your dream experiences is a personal one. Everyone’s dream life is unique, and what works for one person may not work for another. Be patient and persistent in your efforts, and over time, you’ll likely notice improvements in the richness and memorability of your dreams.