A dream journal can provide a great source of insight into our inner world. Keeping a dream journal is very helpful in improving our dream recall for the purposes of reflection, analysis and creating your dream life. The following steps will help you to get started.
1. A Notebook or Journal
Find a journal or notebook to record your dreams. Arrange the journal appropriately for recording.
You can use the column method: Draw a column down the middle of each journal page. Write your recollections with the label “Dream Recollections” on the left side of the page and the corresponding interpretations labelled “Dream Analysis” on the right side.
If you don’t like the column method, then you can write down the dream first and follow up with the analysis underneath it.
2. Make the Intention to Remember
Dream recall begins before you go to sleep. It doesn’t start when you wake up but before you go to bed. You need to prime your mind beforehand. Make the intention to remember your dreams upon awakening.
3. Place the Dream Journal Next to Your Bed
The best place for keeping your dream journal is next to your bed. Dreams fade quickly on awakening so you need to write them down as soon as you wake up. Don’t forget to place a pen or pencil right next to the journal.
Have a desk lamp or reading light by your bedside that is easy to turn on. You might wake up in the middle of the night with a dream that you feel compelled to write down. Having the light easily accessible will enable you to do this before forgetting the dream.
4. Write Down Your Dreams
As soon as you awaken in the morning, during the night, or after a nap, immediately write down everything you can possibly remember, not leaving out even the slightest detail.
It’s important when journaling to suspend all moral judgments about what occurred in the dream. Most dreams are symbolic so don’t take them too seriously! Date each dream entry. Write everything in the present tense. This helps with remembering dreams by putting you in the moment.
Writing down your dreams should become the first thing you do each morning as a daily habit. You will quickly find that recalling your dreams will become progressively easier and more automatic as time goes by.
5. Title Your Dreams
Give each dream an appropriate title. Giving each dream a title forces you to sum up the dream into a main feeling or theme. It’s an easy way for you to find the dream again for future reference, and it’s also a good way of summarizing your general reaction to the dream.
6. Interpret and Analyze Your Dreams
Set aside some time during the day to analyze your dreams of the previous night. It is best to do this while relaxing completely in a place where you will not be disturbed.