Everyone dreams, whether the dreamer remembers his/her dream is another matter. Some people have no problems remembering their dreams while others can only remember a few fuzzy details or nothing at all. The fact is, everyone dreams.
During rapid eye movement (REM) is when the dreamer experiences the most vivid dreams. This is when the brain is highly active. If you have ever watched a person sleeping and noticed their eyelids moving then you have witnessed someone during REM. This happens with animals too. Countless of times I have watched my dogs barking, moving their legs, or moving their eyes while they were fast asleep. This is REM.
The dreamer goes through Rapid Eye Movement three to four times every single night. Again, during REM is when the dreamer experiences the most vivid dreams but we also have less vivid dreams outside of REM or in between REM phases.
According to the International Association For The Study Of Dreams, the dreamers ability to recall their dreams can be affected by several things. These things include drugs, medications, alcohol, stress, illness, or certain foods a person might eat during the evening.
Below you will find some suggestions which will prove helpful in dream recall.
Getting Enough Sleep
Make sure to get plenty of rest. There is no magic number to suggest since everyone has their own individual sleep needs. Some people require at least eight hours of sleep while others need more. You have to figure out what your sleep needs are.
Before You Go To Sleep
Intend to remember your dreams upon awakening and KNOW that you WILL remember them. It also helps to verbalize your intentions. Say out loud “I will remember my dreams upon awakening”. Repeat this several times until the words are ringing in your head. In fact Edgar Casey suggested that the dreamer should repeat “I will remember my dreams upon awakening” continually until you are actually asleep. Falling asleep with this mental suggestion is very powerful since the time between being half awake and half asleep the subconscious can be programmed to anything you wish. If you are able to actually cross over into the dream state while repeating your intent you WILL remember your dreams when you wake up. Casey also suggested that the dreamer make a physical sound each time after stating your intention such as snapping your fingers, clicking your fingernails, or tapping your finger on the pillow. This creates a trigger of your intention and penetrates deeper into your subconscious. Some people call this PROGRAMMING the subconscious mind. You could also try tape recording your intention and the physical trigger sound and play it while falling asleep. Some people find that the recording is helpful while others find that the sounds from the recorder is disturbing. Play around with it and see if you find it helpful to you.
Try to get the body as relaxed as you can. If you have to stretch or even do Yoga all the better. You can even meditate to clear your mind, so that that you are more prepared for the next step. You don't have to eat or refrain from eating before bedtime. You may do as you like. Try experimenting with eating different foods before bedtime and see if you get any different results in the end. Make sure you have a pen and pad handy to write with next to the bed.
Keep Paper and Pen Handy
Before retiring to bed make sure to have some paper and a pen or pencil on the nightstand in order to write down your dreams upon awakening. Alternately, you can keep a small tape recorder on the nightstand. Sometimes this is better since you can speak faster than you can write. The quicker you record your dreams the less likely you will forget parts of it.
Write It Down
Write down everything you remember about your dream, even if it doesn’t make sense to you. Make sure to include all the images you remember and all the feelings you experienced. Its okay to write down only parts of your dream if that’s all you can remember. The important thing is to immediately write down what you recall. Don’t wait one second before jotting down your dreams. Most people completely forget their dreams or parts of it if they wait, even if the dream was extremely vivid to them. Always write something down on paper upon awakening even if you write “I didn’t remember my dream”. Jot down all the details, make a note if you remember certain colors, fragrances, names, moods, feelings, sounds, and places. Don’t forget to include the date of your dream and the foods you ate prior to retiring (this might give you a clue if you can’t recall a dream).
When you wake up in the morning it helps dream recall if you spend a few moments laying still. Try not to move for the first several minutes of awakening. Any movement or distractions can erase a dream from the memory.