Keeping a dream journal

Just as when you are awake, your dream life has lessons and experiences to teach you.

by Doreene Clement — 

One great use for a journal or diary is as a dream journal. This type of journaling is used to record and track your dreams after you awaken.

Upon waking, before you even get out of bed, take time to be silent and recall your dreams. Then, reach for the dream journal you keep on your nightstand. This journal can be a blank book or a notebook. It is also a good idea to keep a pen and a small light or flashlight on your nightstand. You can also use a tape recorder to record your dreams.

Begin each entry with the date, day of the week and time you are recording your dreams. Start writing your dreams in the present tense, as if what you dreamt is happening as you write it. Whether you wake in the morning, the middle of the night or after a nap, write down all the details you can remember about your dreams.

Be as specific as possible. You can always journal more later, adding further details at another time, if you recall more. Write down everything you remember — who was there, how you felt, where you were, what you were doing or what was happening, what you saw or  did not see, but think should have been included. Writing down daily all the details and circumstances you recall about your dreams will create a written pattern of your thoughts and experiences while you sleep.

If you cannot recall any dreams, write that in your journal. You can also set the intention the night before that you will remember your dreams. As you try to recall them, remain calm, breathe and relax.

Be sure to record any symbolism you remember. For example, if you saw yourself in a forest, by the ocean or in the middle of a busy intersection. Many dream interpretation books and Web sites are available to help translate the possible meanings and symbols attached to your dreams.

Just as when you are awake, your dream life has lessons and experiences to teach you. Utilizing the valuable tool of journaling allows you to further process and understand your dream experiences and what those lessons really mean for you.


Doreene Clement, a cancer victim, was the author of The 5 Year Journal. 

Reprinted from AzNetNews, Volume 25, Number 4, August/September 2006.

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