Author Topic: 04 Dream Recall  (Read 7462 times)

Offline Seeker

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04 Dream Recall
« on: May 02, 2008, 08:45:51 AM »
Without recall, there is little advantage to being able to dream lucidly.  What is the use to have a lucid dream if you cannot remember it upon awakening?

Likewise, developing good recall is essential to training your mind to dream lucidly.  Without good recall you cannot identify your dream signs, without dream signs you cannot reality check effectively, without effective reality checks, you cannot easily train your minds to question dream events.  In this section we will work on techniques to develop good recall.   This is an interactive session.

The majority of participants have now calculated their recall rates for the month of April, we will now focus on improving recall for May.

Most of you are already using one of the best tools available to improve recall, your dream journal.  It is important that everyone keep their journal as up to date and accurate as possible for the month of May, we will measure recall once more at the end of the month to look for improvement.

Poor recall takes a number of forms:
1.   You may remember nothing
2.   You may sleep too soundly
3.   You may recall only fragments
4.   You may forget the dream later in the day

Everyone, please respond in this thread which techniques work best for you to help you recall dreams.  Next Monday or Tuesday, I will summarize these techniques and each of you will identify and list in your workbooks which of these techniques you will actively use this month to improve your recall.

I'll go first.  :D

I almost always remember my dreams upon awakening, but find that the memory of the dream very quickly fades away.  Usually by the time I am dressed and have made my way to the kitchen, the dream is only a dim memory. 

Writing a few hints in a notebook immediately upon awakening gives me the hints I need to recall the dream as I enter it into my journal.  I keep a small notebook next to the toilet along with a small flashlight and pen, upon awakening I go there to make notes.  As early as possible in the day, I review my notes and try to recreate as much of the dream as I can in my journal.
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Offline Clairity

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Re: 04 Dream Recall
« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2008, 10:06:11 AM »
What really messes up my recall is being jarred awake by an alarm or some other sound and/or if I immediately change position or start thinking about my day once I wake up.

I try and write my about my dreams as soon as I wake up from them because if I wait til later.. I lose alot (if not all) the details.

Once I wake up.. I try not to move! I then think about the dream I just had. If nothing comes to mind.. I try to remember if there was a specific person, place, thing, food or emotion in the dream. Once I come up with even a tidbit of the dream.. I try to work my way backward.. how did I get there.. who was with me, etc.

I keep a small memo pad open with a pen clipped to the spiral next to my pillow. When I wake up from a dream, I don't turn on the lights, nor open my eyes.. I just reach for the pad and start writing. I write alot or a little (i.e., just enough to jog my memory).
« Last Edit: May 02, 2008, 10:10:09 AM by Clairity »
Challenges completed:

Basic: HA, FL, SO, LM, LC
Intermediate: WW, CO, CP, MO, TK, MF, WA, EF, IA, DC
Advanced: TE, OS, GC, DL, LO, HP

Offline Kromoh

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Re: 04 Dream Recall
« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2008, 10:24:49 AM »
As Clairity said, being forced awake by an alarm clock, or waking up in a rush completely blocks my recall.

I find that, if I really feel the need to remember dreams (just like I feel now with the workshop and everything) it will get so damn better it amazes me. If I really must remember my dreams, I will. Check my DJ for example - remembered 6 dreams on the 2nd day of DJing - that because I wanted to remember my dreams to be able to post them :P

Taking immediate notes upon awakening is perfect for recalling dreams - it helps to write down key concepts and important things immediately; and you will later be able to read those and fully write down the dream. I always keep an open notebook near bed, but my DJ itself has always been on my computer.

Btw guys, I wanted to say that this workshop made me restart my long-retired DJ. :D

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Offline Hiros

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Re: 04 Dream Recall
« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2008, 10:40:18 AM »
I keep a notebook next to my bed and write as many dot points about my dream as I can each time I wake up. To remember I just lie there with my eyes open (to prevent accidentally going back to sleep) and try to think back to what just happened. When I get something I work my way back from there and often the important events of the dream will all just come back to me at once. If I struggle to remember anything at all, I'll close my eyes and let myself drift off, I find it easier to remember in this state. Then I will either accidentally fall asleep, or remember something and jump up to write it down.

I then write my dreams down in detail on the PC as early as I can. If I'm attempting a WBTB or I've just woken for a great long dream or a lucid then I'll do it immediately, if not I'll do it within an hour of getting up if I can. Otherwise, when I get home later in the day. The earlier I do it the more detail I recall, but the points in my written journal ensure I can still recall a decent amount later in the day.

I've also trained myself to wake up after each dream. At first I used an alarm and auto-suggestion. Now I don't need to do either and will usually wake up 4-6 times a night, usually remembering at least a fragment. Some nights I will sleep right through, so to combat this I set my alarm for 4 hours after I go to bed. Usually I'll wake up before it activates and can turn it off in advance, but if I don't then it will wake me and from then on I will wake up after each dream like normal. If the alarm does go off, I also find like Clairity and Kromoh that it's way harder to remember anything.

Offline Burned up

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Re: 04 Dream Recall
« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2008, 10:48:11 AM »
I keep a notebook by my bed.  Frequently I wake in the night and I write down my dream, if recall is forthcoming.  Wakening in the morning I do the same.  Often I have no memory of the dream during the night, the only evidence is my scribbling (which I can't always read).  And often when I get to transcribe the scribbles into my DJ, the last dream of the night has mostly faded.

Interestingly, if I don't write down dreams on wakening, I usually (perhaps 3 times out of 4) have no further recall.  Other times I have perhaps very good recall at a random time during the day - usually a deja-vu moment.  But when I write dreams down that later recall almost never happens.

Therefore I sacrifice good recall for frequent recall.  I think this is a good trade-off although few of my dreams are recalled as "epic".

Away from home, I keep my notebook for several days and enter these into my DJ on return.  This can be time-consuming but I think it's worth the commitment.  I started my online DJ when I joined DV and I have an entry for each day as well as some back-filled dates from my earlier (but not daily) hand-written journal.
Bu

Offline PeteB

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Re: 04 Dream Recall
« Reply #5 on: May 02, 2008, 11:30:09 AM »
I keep a notebook and pen by my bed, so that I can attempt to write down what I remember when I wake up. If I dont remember anything, I tend to just lie there, and let my mind wonder for a while, hoping that some memory will turn back up into my head. Sometimes if i'm not in the best mood, or have been busy the night before, I can get tempted to just lie there, and not engage my mind in dream recall. This is somthing that i'm very much trying to stop doing.

As other people have mentioned, I tend to have little to no recall if i'm woken up forcefully, whether this is an alarm clock, or some loud noise. This is also true with waking up needing to pee. If this happens, I tend to be more focused on that, and loose the clarity of the dream.

Offline Amethyst Star

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Re: 04 Dream Recall
« Reply #6 on: May 02, 2008, 11:47:03 AM »
Summary:  Lie in bed without moving and try to remember a piece from each dream I can recall.  I then work backwards until I either can't recall any more or begin to forget the dream.  I then write down a summary if I don't have time to write it all out, and then i can go back to it later.

Like most people, I lay in bed and do my best to not move at all.  Any outside stimulus can snatch a memory from my dreams away.  I don't have much of a problem with waking up with an alarm clock as opposed to waking up naturally, but I have to make sure I don't move any more than I have to.  I try to recall a fragment from the last dream that I had as well as from any other dreams I may have had earlier in the night.  Unfortunately, if I don't write down dreams after I wake up from them in the middle of the night, they're lost to me.  I'm sure that diligence and practice will help a lot with that, but at this point in time, my best tools are paper and pen.

When I remember a fragment from my dream(s), I try to work backwards from there.  I give other people advice that they should try to recall anything (shapes, colors, emotions, etc.), but I don't always take it.  It's hard to be so detailed in the morning, so when I have recalled as much as I can, I reach for my DJ and write a summary of all of the major points of the dream(s).  Then, if/when I have time, I can go back and fill in the blanks with any details that I may recall or even just make it more easily readable.  I find, as well (and this morning was no exception), that if I can recall something, I can almost always recall at least one or two more details, so that what seems like just a dream fragment becomes more of a real dream.

Also, I've found that reading through my dream journal before I go to bed helps to reinforce the idea that I want to recall my dreams, and I will be more apt to put forth the effort when I wake up in the morning.

One of my biggest problems, though, is that if I spend too much time trying to recall a dream, I'll start to lose fragments as I wake up and/or things will start going out of order.  I have to balance accuracy with quantity and it can get very annoying.  Writing down what I already have in my head is all I can do, though I sometimes find that in the process of writing down the dream, I can remember more little bits and pieces from it.
« Last Edit: May 02, 2008, 11:57:51 AM by Ame »
Returning to the basics... again.

Offline thisismylogin

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Re: 04 Dream Recall
« Reply #7 on: May 02, 2008, 12:09:51 PM »
 I think I posted this in the wrong spot so i am reposting in here
My Recall Method
When I wake up in the middle of the night/in the morning I say to my self "did i have a dream?" If the answer is yes I Think to my self ever detail I can think of  from my dream... This stores it in another part of my brain and I record them at lunch time/when I first get into work depending on whether or not I have time... I would say this is relable for me 97% of the time for me... I forget maybe two a month between the time I wake up and the time I recorded it... that usually of days where I am rushed though.

Offline iadr

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Re: 04 Dream Recall
« Reply #8 on: May 02, 2008, 01:00:46 PM »
What has been working well for me lately in helping to recall dreams, or at least to have vivid dreams which are easier to recall, is to get my energy circulating through my body while going to sleep, as this seems to help me wake up naturally every couple of hours and remember my dreams.

Something I have been using for a long time and still use though is binaural beats or pulses.  Lately I have been having them start up after 90 minutes and then ramp them back and forth between 4hz and 9hz, which seems to be working.

Last night I accidentally selected the wrong preset, one that has no pulses in it, and slept for 4 whole hours without waking up, a long time for me, since I am usually waking up every 2 hours if not sooner.

And I might have slept longer had my strobe lights not gone off and woke me up, because I have been setting them to go off after about 4 hours just in case I sleep too long.

As for remembering the dreams, I remain as still as possible and don't move when waking up.

Then as soon as I have an idea of what I was dreaming about which sometimes might take a minute or two, I reach for my digital voice recorder laying to me on the bed and speak the main parts of my dream into it.

I find it a lot easier to remember the dream if I then get up and record it in an Excel spreadsheet, because if I wait until later in the evening which I sometimes do, to listen back to all those dreams and record them in my Excel spreadsheet, it can sometimes be really difficult to understand what I was saying during the night when I was half asleep, in addition to having forgotten a lot of the dreams. :(

One thing I forgot to mention that really improved my dream recall when I started doing it is that I go back over my dreams again before going to bed, writing out the main points in them.  This practice doubled my dream recall when I started doing it.
« Last Edit: May 02, 2008, 06:38:31 PM by iadr »
Beg and Bas: HA GG TR LM CL SO LC RS FL LW TD
Int: EF BI JR DC WH CT CW IA WA TA WT JT RA WW WF RA MF WF BO TK
Advanced: TT AN OB CS BH ST
Sea:
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Offline Snowy Egypt

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Re: 04 Dream Recall
« Reply #9 on: May 02, 2008, 01:12:23 PM »
I think my best method is to replay the dream in my head throughout the day. Even if it's a fragment, I'll have it stored in my head to write (or type) it down later.

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Offline Raklet

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Re: 04 Dream Recall
« Reply #10 on: May 02, 2008, 01:20:47 PM »
I need sufficient sleep in order to recall my dreams - at least 8 hours.  If I am well rested, I sleep lighter and will wake frequently with many details readily available.  If I get less sleep than this, I sleep too deeply to remember anything.

Offline Captain Sleepalot

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Re: 04 Dream Recall
« Reply #11 on: May 02, 2008, 02:17:14 PM »
Just writing them out immediately upon awakening works best for me.

If the dream was strong enough, I can remember it later in the day and pull most of it from memory. Most of the time I will forget them if I don't write it immediately. Also, I try to think of the most memorable parts first and start asking myself "What happened next? Who was there? What was I doing?"

This can jog my memory a bit more.
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Offline Kromoh

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Re: 04 Dream Recall
« Reply #12 on: May 02, 2008, 02:39:55 PM »
I need sufficient sleep in order to recall my dreams - at least 8 hours.  If I am well rested, I sleep lighter and will wake frequently with many details readily available.  If I get less sleep than this, I sleep too deeply to remember anything.

Exactly. I usually sleep not an extensive amount of time, varying from 5 to 7 hours, and I find it difficult to remember dreams. I even believe it's because I don't dream that much in that timespan. But if I get to sleep 8 hours or more, I can usually remember plenty of dreams.

Through the snow, paws made his way
When through the pines the lone wolf shinned
Lycanthrope eyes watched that day
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Offline Robot_Butler

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Re: 04 Dream Recall
« Reply #13 on: May 02, 2008, 02:41:31 PM »
I have a hard time recalling and writing multiple dreams at once.  I like to write down each dream right after it happened, during my brief midnight awakenings.

I have the best recall when I take time before bed to organize my thoughts.  Before sleep, while lying in bed, I will take a minute to schedule out my night.  I will make a plan, and tell myself to wake up after every dream to write it down.  I have to set this in my prospective memory.  Then, when I catch myself waking up briefly at 3 or 4am, I will grab a flashlight and my journal, and scribble down the dream I just had.

I find that morning recall is dependent on what part of my sleep cycle I wake up from.  If my alarm pulls me directly out of a REM cycle, I will remember the dream.  If it wakes me up from a deeper stage of sleep, I will feel  groggy, my memory will be fuzzy, and I will have a hard time recalling anything but fragments.

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Offline Budster

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Re: 04 Dream Recall
« Reply #14 on: May 02, 2008, 03:51:49 PM »
I keep my PDA next to my bed and start writing as soon as I wake up. I have two alarms set for school days, one is quiet, and I can still remember dreams after that goes off; the other is a loud you-need-to-get-up alarm which isn't great for recall.

Other than that, I don't usually need to make too much of an effort. As long as I do it early in the day, I can remember them quite well.
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