Each man should frame life so that at some future hour fact and his dreaming meet. - Victor Hugo
Do you remember the last dream you had?
Researchers, led by Perrine Ruby from the Lyon Neuroscience Research Center, have discovered that there are two types of dreamers.
For those who can regularly remember their dreams, more activity can be found in the region of the brain that is believed to transition dreams to memory storage.
Part of the reason for this memory recall may involve an individual’s sleeping patterns. Ruby’s team found that people who have high levels of dream recall wake up twice as often during the night when compared to people who have low levels of dream recall.
With greater wakefulness during the night, more memory transfers are believed to occur.
Remembering a dream is just one step on a journey of many when improving dream recall.
Dreams are a way for people to solve problems while they are sleeping.
Lucid dreaming is an opportunity to craft brand-new worlds during restful sleep.
The clarity and color of a dream can be intriguing, exciting, and engaging.
Do you want to know how to improve dream recall?
Then here are some methods that could increase the activity in your dream recall centers so more dreams get transferred into your memory over time.
#1. Develop a Healthy Bedtime Routine
There are two primary types of sleep: non-REM and REM.
REM stands for “Rapid Eye Movement.” Dreams primarily occur during the latter type of sleep.
As you fall asleep, you’ll enter the phases of non-REM sleep. The first stage, which can last up to 15 minutes, is a light sleep. During this first stage, it is easy to wake up. As you proceed toward the second stage of sleep, your body temperature will begin to fall. This prepares the brain for a deeper sleep.
The third stage of non-REM sleep, which can also last up to 15 minutes, is deep enough that it becomes difficult to wake a person up from it.
These stages of sleep are important because it is the time when the body begins to repair itself. You build muscle tissue, bones, and your immune strengthens during these stages.
Then REM sleep occurs for about 10 minutes. This is where you can have intense dreams.
After a period of REM sleep, the cycle starts over once again. With every cycle, the dream stage of sleep becomes longer and longer.
One of the best ways to encourage these cycles to occur is to establish a healthy bedtime routine.
Try incorporating these habits to improve dream recall.
- Go to bed at the same time every night whenever possible.
- Give yourself 30-60 minutes of time away from stimulating activities before sleep.
- Avoid eating calorie-rich foods within 3 hours of bedtime.
- Stop consuming products with stimulants, such as caffeine, after lunch.
#2. Take Time to Meditate Daily
Many of the benefits that the body receives during sleep can be duplicated with 15-30 minutes of daily meditation.
Meditating is a way for the brain to process thoughts, become aware of the world, and contemplate greater things than the daily schedule or to-do list.
Meditation also helps the mind and body find ways to relax, even in situations that would normally be highly stressful.
As part of your meditation routine, consider adding positive affirmations. Repeat each phrase below for about 2 minutes before moving to the next one and be sure to follow them in order.
- “I am special and beautiful.”
- “I will remember my dreams.”
- “I can achieve anything.”
Positive affirmation phrases create self-fulfilling prophecies.
When you can visualize moments of success when working toward dream recall, then the clarity and color of each dream will become easier to remember.
#3. Train the Brain
Even if you don’t wake up several times during the night to encourage a greater level of dream recall, you do wake up in the morning to start your day.
That is a moment when your brain can transition dreams into a memory.
For those that do not remember their dreams regularly, developing more strength in the transitory process can encourage more dream memories to be stored over time.
To build this strength, try to immediately recall any moments from your dream the instant you wake up.
Every detail is significant because every moment of recall will encourage more moments of recall.
Whenever you wake up and can recall a dream, jot a note about it in the diary. Then go back at least once per week and read your diary entries.
This will reinforce the memories that were created.
Keep a flashlight, pens, and other items that can help you write down a dream if you happen to wake up in the middle of the night remembering one.
You might also consider using these methods to encourage the brain to transfer more dreams into your memory centers.
- Follow a healthy lifestyle and include foods like walnuts, broccoli, celery, salmon, and coconut oil.
- Reduce your multitasking throughout the day whenever possible so energy resources can be reserved for dream storage and recall.
- Play games that stimulate the brain or take up a hobby that requires you to develop a new skill as this can improve brain function.
To jumpstart the training process, consider adding intermittent fasting for one day per week.
Go 8 hours between each meal and this will provide you with up to 18 hours of total fasting without going hungry.
Drink water that day instead of juice, sodas, or sports drinks.
That can help the brain push the reset button and encourage the cycles of sleep to begin quickly during your bedtime routine.
#4. Discover Your Patterns
Some people tend to sleep 9-10 hours every day. Others feel refreshed after 7 hours of sleep, but only if they get to bed by a certain time.
Margaret Thatcher used to sleep just 4 hours each night, but would routinely take a 2-hour nap during the day.
Every person has their own sleep cycles. That’s why it is important to learn about how your sleep cycles operate.
If you can identify areas where your sleep cycles may be interrupted during the night, then you can take actions to prevent that interruption in the future.
For those who are looking to improve their dream recall, a sleep study is one of the best ways to gain this information.
During a sleep study, your sleep will be directly monitored by a technician.
Medical devices will register the various cycles of sleep and you’ll receive a report about the length of each cycle. This can help you identify disruptions quickly and easily.
A sleep study can also discover possible medical conditions that may be reducing REM sleep cycles.
One of the most common health issues that interrupts sleep is sleep apnea.
It is a condition that causes a person to stop breathing while they sleep. In severe instances, the condition can be life-threatening.
Everyday Health offers 10 disorders that can interrupt sleep as well.
If you can treat these underlying conditions, then you may be able to improve dream recall.
#5. Recreate Your Dreams
Many people tend to have dreams which involve common items or activities in their lives.
They find themselves driving to places, having conversations with family or friends, or living lives that seem similar, familiar, but somewhat different than their own.
By recreating these common items or activities, the brain can be encouraged to remember a dream with better clarity and color.
Now you will not want to recreate every dream circumstance.
If you dream that you can fly, trying to fly without the help of an aircraft is a decision that won’t end well.
If you dream about eating bowl of ice cream for breakfast, that’s a different story. Recreating that circumstance could help you recall other details of the dream you just had.
Some people find that drawing their dreams can be helpful as well. Maybe draw yourself flying instead of trying it?
It is important to remember that the imagery from a dream can be profound, unique, and sometimes disturbing.
No matter how much of a nightmare the dream may be, it is important to distinguish dream memories from those generated by reality.
#6. Talk About Your Dreams with Others
One of the most effective ways to learn a new skill is to engage an active learning process.
Finding ways to be interactive while building a new skill helps the brain retain more information and causes neurons to fire.
Hebbian theory suggests that as more neurons fire, they can build engrams that help to retain the skill being developed at a higher level.
For the skill of dream recall, one of the best ways to be interactive is to talk about your dreams with someone you trust.
It can be a family member, a close friend, or someone who is professionally trained to help others handle dream-generated information.
The act of sharing reinforces the transfer of information into the brain’s memory recall centers.
Talking acts just like writing does because it encourages the brain to remember what just happened in the dream.
It is a good idea to have this conversation in an isolated environment. Talking about your dream at the local coffee shop could be distracting. On a quiet bench in the park might be a better idea.
As you talk about your dream, ask yourself these 4 questions.
- How does the dream make me feel right now?
- What do I feel, need, or want because of the dream?
- Are there circumstances in reality that could be affecting my dream?
- How should I respond to my thoughts and feelings about the dream?
By answering these questions with as much specificity as possible, you may discover the reasons behind a specific dream.
Whether you’re processing a stressful problem or creating an environment where you can relax through lucid dreaming, sharing your experiences can help to build the foundation of long-term recall.
#7. Stabilize your GABA Levels
GABA is a neurotransmitter.
Its job is to block the impulses that occur between the nerve cells within the brain.
By stabilizing the levels of this neurotransmitter, it is possible to improve dream recall, remember with greater clarity, and even enjoy improved color within the memories that are established.
Many people have low GABA levels and do not realize it.
The symptoms of low GABA can be subtle, so they are often ignored or mistaken for a different condition.
If you are experiencing any of the following issues, then low GABA could be a contributing factor to what you are feeling.
- Anxiety. Heightened anxiety is often experienced with low GABA. It does not generally evolve into panic attacks or paranoia, but it will cause an individual to begin worrying about everyday circumstances with greater ferocity.
- Mood Disorders. If a mood disorder is persistent and other treatment options, such as dialectical behavior therapy, are not helping, then low GABA could be the cause.
- Chronic Pain. If there isn’t a determined cause for an individual’s chronic pain, then low GABA should become part of the discussion.
Individuals who have been diagnosed with epilepsy will often have low GABA levels.
Taking a supplement that stabilizes GABA levels can begin to correct these issues.
Once the stabilization occurs, improved mood, improved sleep, and less anxiety are frequently reported.
A GABA supplement may help to relieve some premenstrual syndrome symptoms and can be used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder symptoms as well.
Stabilized GABA levels can also lower blood pressure, increase exercise tolerance, and burn fat, all of which can help to improve sleep.
As these benefits occur, the elevated GABA will inhibit Acetylcholine from breaking down, which provides more neurotransmitter influence to occur within the brain.
This allows dreams to be transferred to the memory centers of the brain with greater frequency with improved clarity and color.
One of the best options available today to help stabilize GABA levels is Claridream.
It combines several natural ingredients, such as passionflower, valerian root, chamomile, and Chinese club moss, to encourage GABA retention.
Choline bitartrate is included with Claridream as well, a vitamin found in several foods, to help retain Acetylcholine so dream states can be prolonged.
Claridream can encourage longer states of lucid dreaming as well.
For more information about this exciting product, you can visit the Claridream product page to see if it has the potential to help you with your dreams.
Are You Ready to Improve Your Dream Recall?
If you’d like to remember more of your dreams, then these steps can be taken today so that your brain will want to begin transferring your dream experiences to your memory centers.
It is a process that does take some time to complete.
Whether you start a dream journal, establish a healthy bedtime routine, or take a GABA and Acetylcholine stabilizer like Claridream, give yourself at least 3 weeks to begin experiencing results.
For some people, it may take 4-8 weeks of a new sleep routine to begin remembering more dreams with greater color and clarity.
You will notice improvements coming in stages. Most people begin remembering “flashes” of dreams at first.
Short periods of lucid dreaming may also occur at first.
As you invest time into the skill of dream recall, you’ll notice that remembering dreams will become easier than you ever thought it could be.
How often do you remember your dreams? What is the most unusual dream you can remember having?