Lydia is a solitary witch who has been active in the occult community for 15 years. She is a published writer and visual artist.
The World of Dreams is a Magical Place
Entering the World of Dreams
The world of dreams is a fascinating place. So many of us wish that we could improve our ability to remember our dreams and get a clearer glimpse into our subconscious mind. Dreams can be fleeting. Learning to remember them is definitely a desirable skill.
Do you wake up in a haze and have trouble remembering any relevant dream details at all? Have no fear! Dream memory is a skill that we can improve and develop over time. With the use of a few beneficial techniques, we will be filling our journals with thought-provoking discoveries and learning all kinds of new things about ourselves in no time. Perhaps we will even have the great fortune of yielding a prophetic dream which guides us to beneficial things in our waking state.
The Longer We Sleep the More We Dream
What Happens When We Sleep?
There are 2 types of sleep. REM and non-REM sleep. REM refers to "rapid eye movement".
When you first fall asleep you enter the non-REM sleep state. This is a light sleep and the duration of this stage is about 15 minutes. Your body temperature drops as you drift into the second, deeper stage of sleep. It becomes difficult to wake a person when they enter the third stage of non-REM sleep. The body begins repairing itself during these initial sleep stages. Your immune system strengthens as you build muscles and bones.
Then the next stage is the REM stage which lasts about 10 minutes for the first cycle. The longer you sleep, the longer these phases of deep sleep tend to last. It is at this stage of sleep where you begin to enter a more vivid dream state.
Why Remember Your Dreams?
- Sharpens your ability to problem solve
- An engaging way to improve your imagination
- Improve your intuition
- Motivates you to improve sleep habits
- Makes sleep more interesting
Ways To Improve Dream Recall
- Develop a good bedtime routine
- Avoid high-calorie foods at bedtime
- Go to bed at the same time each night
- Relax your mind before bedtime
- Reduce caffeine and other stimulants throughout the day
- Practice daily meditation
- Get lots of sleep and take naps
- Make it part of your routine
- Do a magick spell
Get a Good Night's Sleep
Get Plenty of Rest
We are less likely to remember our dreams if we are stressed out or anxious. Getting plenty of sleep is one way to help yourself avoid this. If you are unable to get a full night's sleep you can catch up by taking a nap during the day.
We have about 100 minutes of REM dream time during an 8 hour night of sleep. The length of our dreams increases throughout the night. Your first dream occurs about 90 minutes after you fall asleep. This dream will only last a few moments. Your last dream before waking could stretch out to be as long as 45 minutes. If you don't get enough sleep at night you miss out on those long periods of REM.
Our sleep patterns may affect our ability to remember our dreams. Those who wake up frequently in the middle of the night might have a better chance of remembering what their dreams were about. One technique to capitalize on this is to set your alarm to wake you up when you are in the REM state.
Meditation Relaxes the Mind and Strengthens Memory
Practice Daily Meditation
Take time out of your day to meditate. 10 to 30 minutes a day is a good amount of time. Meditation helps the mind relax. It helps us tap into the benefits of restful sleep while we are awake.
You can add affirmations about your ability to remember your dreams to your meditational practice. Write down an affirmation and place it on your altar as a point to focus on as you meditate. Visualize yourself successfully remembering your dreams. Form a mental picture of you writing out notes about your dreams.
Get Your Brain into Memory Boosting Habits
Train Your Brain to Remember
The morning is a great time to focus on remembering your dreams. Create a morning ritual of waking up and making notes about your dreams. Try to do this on a daily basis.
Remember your dreams the very moment you wake up. Copy down every little detail. Avoid self-censoring. Even if certain details are insignificant it can help you remember other parts of the dream.
When you wake up in the middle of the night ask yourself what you were dreaming about. Flex your brain muscles and consciously try to remember as much as possible.
Eat Foods that Improve Memory
Walnuts, salmon, or broccoli are foods known to improve mental function. You could add in a fish oil supplement as well.
Rosemary is a herb that improves memory. You could drink a tea of rosemary to reap the benefits. Even inhaling rosemary essential oil can help improve memory.
Wild asparagus root is another herbal remedy that is popular for dream recall. You can buy this at your local health food store.
Avoid alcohol and mind-altering substances. Alcohol impacts the quality of sleep we have and makes it a lighter sleep. We may not as easily get into those deeper REM sleep stages which produce the most interesting dreams.
Don't drink coffee, cola, or any other stimulants late in the day.
Avoid heavy foods for 3 hours before bedtime. If you must have a bedtime snack keep it light. Try fresh fruit or veggies.
Writing Your Dreams Down Helps Your Memory
Keep a Dream Journal
Copying our dreams out makes them more concrete. Don't just try to remember the dream in your head. Take your journal with you throughout the day. The events of the day can trigger our memory. Be ready for when that happens.
Make sure to keep your dream journal near your bed. Keep a flashlight and a pen handy. You can use the voice recorder feature of your cell phone too. Sometimes that is easier to do in the middle of the night when you wake up feeling tired and groggy. Then you can copy the dream out in your journal when you are more alert.
Go back at least once a week to review what has been happening in your dreams. Continually reviewing your dream journal will help your memories solidify.
Improve Memory by Recreating Your Dream
Recreate Your Dreams
Act out the dream you had if at all possible. It is obvious that not all dreams can be acted out, but many can. Visit the location of where your dream took place. Engage in some of the same activities that happened in the dream. If you had a dream about the water you can get in touch with that element by swimming or taking a bath. Get in touch with the people you dream about if you are on friendly terms with them.
Draw pictures of your dreams. This works well for dreams which cannot be recreated or acted out.
Talk about your dreams with friends or family. The act of sharing your dreams reinforces the memory. It can be a fun way of bonding with the people in your life. Most especially share your dreams with friends who are also interested in intuition and dreamwork.
Cast a Dream Recall Spell
Cast a Spell
You can cast a spell to improve your dream memories.
Write the word "remember" on a bottle of water and place it next to your bed. Take a sip of this water before you fall asleep and when you wake up in the morning.
You can also make a dream jar. Mix together sleep herbs like rose, lavender, peppermint, and chamomile. Write a request for divine guidance in remembering your dreams and place it inside the jar. Place the jar under your bed.
You could also petition one of the gods or goddesses for guidance. Sometimes we neglect the devotional elements of our occult practice. Taking this opportunity to connect to the divine by asking for help in boosting our dream memory can accomplish this dual purpose.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.