Journaling Part 3 – Dream Journaling
As we know, journaling is mostly used to capture and record the time of our lives when we’re awake. We use it to keep track of goals, tasks, thoughts, and anything that we might want to record, keep or think about. Dream journaling, on the other hand, is the act of capturing and recording the ambiguous and strange world of sleep and dreams.
There are different reasons you might want to start dream journaling. Poets, artists, and creators of all kinds use the dream world to find inspiration and explore their own subconscious ideas without the nagging constraints of your waking mind.
What Is Dream Journaling?
The act of dream journaling in its rawest form is the act of documenting the feelings, plotlines, and details of your dreams. This, in return, helps you identify patterns within your dreams and helps you better remember them. Dream journaling is a practice usually employed by people who want to induce lucid dreams.
Others keep dream journals in order to reflect on what their subconscious minds are engaged with. Recording your dreams improves your general dream recall and makes you better and better at remembering your own dreams. Here are a few tips to give you a kick start in case you decide to give dream journaling a go.
Ways To Keep A Dream Journal
The most common and basic way to keep a dream journal is to have a dedicated notebook and pen lying next to your bed in order for you to record your dreams as you wake up. However, you can be creative and find a way that works for you. Some people are too sleepy to start writing directly as they open their eyes.
An alternative to writing might be grabbing your phone and recording your dreams on voice memos, it’s a lot easier and frictionless for beginners compared to writing them out. If you’re looking to get serious, consider buying pre-formatted dream journals that have designated sections for different things allowing you to format your dreams better with categories like mood, place, and so on.
Once you get going, remember to be consistent, and soon you’ll find that you start noticing patterns and recurring themes in your dreams. Now that you have this information about your subconscious mind, it’s time to use it.
Key Benefits of Dream Journaling
Once made a habit, dream journaling can give you an insight into your own mind. If you find yourself suffering from recurrent nightmares, try writing down the patterns of your dream. Afterward, you can use them to recognize you’re dreaming and stop the nightmare, consciously inside the dream itself.
This practice is called lucid dreaming, and it entails knowing you’re dreaming inside your dream so that you can navigate and steer the dream world to some degree. Another compelling benefit of recording your dreams is getting out of a creative rut. We’ve all found ourselves struggling to come up with a good idea or solve a particular problem.
And the thing with brains is, they don’t stop. They work constantly in order to maintain all of the natural processes within our bodies. So, chances are that faced with a difficult issue or problem that you just can’t seem to figure out, your brain will be working on it in the background even while you sleep.
Use this to your advantage.
We spend 33% of our lives asleep. This time is usually written off as time that can’t be used for anything else but rest. The truth is that our minds are constantly working in the background. Sorting and sifting through information gives us these movie-like experiences that most of the time are pretty weird, and we have trouble remembering. Our dreams are maps of our experiences in our day-to-day lives.
Have you ever had a pretty interesting dream you wish you had written down somewhere? Or maybe a pretty good idea that came to you in your dream? If we choose to do so, we can harness the creative power of dreams and use it to better our own waking lives. Remember that if you want to start dream journaling, focus on making it a habit and always do it first thing when you wake up.