Have you ever thought about keeping a dream journal?
With the fast pace lifestyle of waking up early to an alarm clock and rushing out of the house, many people have accepted that they simply do not have dreams anymore.
However, this could not be farther from the truth.
In reality, almost everyone dreams every single night. What happens is that people do not take adequate time to remember their dreams on a daily basis.
Keeping a dream journal can not only help you remember interesting dreams, but it can actually help you learn to have more control over your dreams.
Let’s look at exactly why a dream journal is worth keeping and what you should write in it.
Other dream related guides!
What is a Dream Journal?
A dream journal is a notebook specially dedicated to writing down any details or events you remember from your dream after waking.
We have most likely all had an interesting dream at one point that we have wanted to share with someone else. However, there is something that makes remembering our dreams very difficult.
Many people keep journals to keep track of what happens during the day and use them as a way to process and remember their thoughts.
A dream journal allows the opportunity to do the same thing to process our dreams and experiences at night.
Why Keep a Dream Journal?
These habits also translate over to the waking life where memory seems to waver as well.
Something most people can relate to is getting older and having a hard time retaining certain memories.
They become distant blurs in most cases where the thoughts become less vivid. By getting in the habit of dream journaling, you will notice that you begin to recall more of your dreams.
If you take care of it and take it seriously you will have memories that you can share and enjoy for a long time.
You can create wonderful enriching dream experiences that can improve mood and teach life lessons.
2. Stress Relief
Many people find writing to be relaxing. It can be nice to unload the mind and put it down on paper. Having a written account of your dreams can be a very fun thing to have and to share with others.
If you aren’t good at writing, this can be a fun entertaining way to improve that life skill.
Keeping a dream journal along with a regular life journal will help you be able to go back and see how your dreams correlate with life events.
When you see your thoughts and ideas down on paper it might also help fuel ideas to solve problems.
3. Learning to How to Lucid Dream
Lucid dreaming is a popular phenomenon that occurs while a person is in a deep sleep.
Lucidity is simply having a high degree of awareness.
Therefore, a lucid dream is a dream that you are aware that you are having.
In this dream, the sensations may seem incredibly realistic.
This means that your sense of touch, smell, sight, hearing, and other sensory capabilities will be amplified and feel very much like it does when you are awake.
If you have ever realized you were in a bad dream and tried to wake up, that is an example of becoming lucid in a dream.
Many people can attest to having very vivid dreams where their dreams are very clear and detailed.
While remembering details is important, it is the level of control is that makes the difference in a lucid dream.
Having a dream journal will engage a brain function that will be integral in lucid dreaming. It will create a sense of observation that will eventually be experienced within the dream.
Some of the benefits of lucid dreaming are:
- Reduced Fear of Dreams and Nightmares
- Fun Entertaining Dreams
- Problem Solving Skills
4. Boosts Creativity
If you are someone who is looking for ideas for writing or other artistic pursuits, dreams can be a great source of inspiration.
Dreams can be wild and totally original experiences you have never thought of before.
It can be fun and entertaining flipping through your dream journal to get ideas for your next creative masterpiece.
Dream Journal Writing Tips
1. Make a List of Questions
Here are a few ideas of prompt questions to answer when analyzing your dreams:
- What were you doing?
- Where were you?
- What was your mood like?
- List the people, creatures, and objects that were in the dream.
- Why do you think you dreamed about these particular things?
- Can you think of any way this dream may be linked to current happenings in your life?
Have a list of questions like this can help you quickly focus and recall all the details of the dream.
You can keep adding questions to this list that you feel may be important to help you recall your dreams.
For example, what time of the day was it in your dream? Or, did I realize that it was a dream while I was still asleep?
You are basically making your own writing prompt to help you pull the necessary details from a dream.
2. Start Writing Quickly
It is amazing how fast you can forget your dreams. It may be best to have your dream journal close to your bed so you can quickly jot down what happened.
Instead of jumping straight out of bed, you can take some time to recollect as much as you can and record it.
Take your time writing when writing in your journal when possible. Just getting something down, however, is better than nothing.
If you are in a hurry in the morning you could try making an audio recording while you are on the go. Then when you have time later you can transfer it to your journal.
3. Be Detailed
The most important thing is trying to recall as many details as possible.
The goal is to make it a consistent habit and then work on continually improving quality.
Being as detailed as possible can really help with the process of learning how to lucid dream.
When you learn to get as detailed as possible you will start recognizing more and more unusual things that hinted you may be in a dream.
You start to control your dreams as you learn to check reality and recognize the signs you are dreaming of.
4. Draw Pictures
Drawing pictures of the dream may help bring out details you may have forgotten. This can also help you analyze the dream in a more visual way.
Some aspects may be near impossible to convey in words, so there are many benefits to drawing what you remember.
This is also a great option for those who prefer not to write, but rather just draw their dreams.
When you are done drawing it still may be a good idea to label things and note the important aspects of the dream.
That way when you come back to it later you will still be able to remember what the dream was about.
Dream Journal Examples
It can be very beneficial to see exactly how others are keeping their dream journals. You may be able to get some more ideas that will help make your own more personal and effective.
Here a few examples of real dream journals people have shared online:
Rob Vincent Dream Journal – A simple dream journal in blog form that was kept for several years. While this does is not a super organized journal, it is still an interesting read that provides some insight for those wanting to learn how to lucid dream.
AKA Terri Dream Logs – This site has some fun and creative ideas on how to make simple dream journals or dream logs. These ideas may be better for those who want to get more artistic and fancy with their dream journals.
Dream Journal Templates
SleepAdvisor.org – There are some basic downloadable dream journal templates available at there site. You can download from their site or just click HERE. This is a plain and simple template that you can print off and use to start your dream journal.
Dream Journal Ultimate – This is a decent dream journal app for both iPhone and Android. It allows you to label your dreams by topic and even share them with others if you want. You can see what dreams other people are having and get insight into what a dream might mean.
Journey Cloud – A basic online journal that can be used for a personal or dream journal. This would be a better option for those who prefer typing over writing.
If you are looking to purchase a fresh journal this is one of the highest-rated and recommended dream journals from Amazon.
It has a template of its own that covers much of the ideas previously mentioned in this article.
The pages featured below give you options to even fine details like the time you went to bed and what you ate before bed.
It also provides an area to make your drawings, if necessary.
This a great beginner dream journal that will help you get a great start recording your dreams.
Whether you use one of these options or just a plain old notebook, we hope this has helped show you how beneficial keeping a dream journal can be.