Author Topic: Dream Journal  (Read 5327 times)


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Dream Journal
« on: November 19, 2003, 03:47:26 PM »
Hello everyone,

Just wanted to chime in with something that has really helped me figure a few things out about myself and my relationships: a dream journal.  I have kept a dream journal for about two years now and have had significant revelations that still assist me today.  

Just for example: "if you make a candle, light it!"  This came to me in a dream when I wondered if I should make more of an effort to get "out there" with my writing, art, or anything.  I tend to be a social loner.  Friendly, but private.  So I took this to mean, if you make something, share it.  If you've learned something, share it.  Sharing is different than showing off...if you make something useful, use it!

So here I am to share my thoughts about dream journals  :wink: .  I use my computer and/or spiral notebooks by the dozen.  nothing fancy.  A great book to get started is Practical Dreaming by Lillie Weiss.  Don't use a dream dictionary unless you are stuck; everyone has their own dream vocabulary.  There are many, many more books about dream interpretation and some great websites, but Practical Dreaming will give you a useable framework.  

If nothing else, it's great entertainment to see what your sleeping brain can serve up in the morning.  Enjoy!  S.


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Dream Journal
« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2003, 05:18:31 PM »

I think that is wonderful that you are able to learn from your dreams.  Documenting them and realising what the underlying meaning of them would be a great gift to have.  I have always felt our dreams were a way of our subconscious to surface.  I do have to ask you this.  Do you also get as many answers from journaling about every day activities and feelings, or is it just the dream journaling that helps you?

I have a horrible time remembering my dreams at times.  So I wouldnt have much journaling to do, lol.  That is what made me curious to your feelings about this.  

I love to write poetry and I have found it is a great way to explore my feelings, but as far as my dreams, I just might be a little scared to remember some of them.  They are pretty far far out at times.  I wouldn't have enough time left in my life to try to figure out why I bought a factory that made pink twinkies.  See what I mean, dream journaling would be awesome if my dreams were not twinkies...what in the world is that about?
Fool me once, shame on you.  Fool me twice, shame on me!



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« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2003, 07:33:52 PM »
Hey there pink twinkie lady,

you are just too fun. :lol:

Wasn't it Freud who said sometimes a twinkie is just a twinkie?  Oh, and Jaded...I am sure those twinkie dreams are FILLED with stuff.  Ok I am laughin real hard now.

If you don't get the Freud reference I'll be glad to explain it.  

Seriously though.......

I too dont remember my dreams often.  I have heard though that just putting a journal next to your bed with a pen (they even have ones with little lights in the tip so you can write in the dark) can help us to remember dreams.  It is like if there is some clear shelf space waiting, a committed focus, an invitation to recall & then it happens easier.  I haven't tried it yet.

Noticing patterns even can be helpful beyond understanding each detail. Like seeker said, the symbols are so individual. I always, always only recalled having nightmares until I was about 16.  Often they involved my trying to rescue hurt animals and running from danger myself or being in a dangerous isolated situation with other children and there was no help, like one of those last people on earth movies.  One of those dreams was of myself and other foster kids sitting on a bus that was moving through total darkness there was no street, nothing and there was no driver.  Anyway, then one day I had a dream that I was on a bus and I saw a little black lab puppy get hit by a car and there was nothing but black and red all over the street.  Then all of a sudden the puppy scene moved backward in slow motion until the puppy was back together as though nothing had happened.  I felt so happy.  I realized the next morning that was the first time I'd had a "good" dream that I recalled.  I hadn't been paying attention to my dreams because they were just all bad.  It just so happens that that day a couple of people had been kind in a way to me that I realize now really spoke to the innocent and vulnerable child in me (the puppy) and told me the world wasn't all harsh.  I didn't have the time or awareness to fully feel vulnerable or innocent it in the day time.  I was sixteen and supporting myself and very much alone.  I felt old and didn't notice because I didn't remeber feeling anything else.  That night dream was a start and that hope has wove its way into my day dreams.


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Dream Journal
« Reply #3 on: November 19, 2003, 08:40:31 PM »
Hi Echo and Jaded and all,

At first I felt a little silly and a lot self-absorbed writing down my dreams.  It took practice first to remember them and then a bunch of time to write them down (I type faster than I write), and then to figure out what I think they are trying to tell me!  But I found that if I wrote down a couple of words right away it would all come flooding back to me later, like a movie.  One author wrote, like Echo suggested, that if you honor your dreams just by making the effort or intention of wanting to recall them, then your dreams will cooperate.

If dreams are disturbing, one might want to talk them through with a therapist.  The therapist doesn't necessarily interpret them, but can ask questions etc and help with the comfort level of the content of anything really troubling.  I have some pretty weird dreams, and sometimes they can really startle me, but nothing too traumatic.  My experience has been that I really started to feel empowered and able to shape my thinking and feelings about certain situations and have actually felt stronger in certain situations in waking life on a few occasions.  

Another example of a dream message: "write from your wounds".  Now I bet you can each conjure up your own dream image to match that message  :shock: but there it was!  I wouldn't have figured this out in waking life.  (Of course I'm never satisfied.  Now I'm dreaming to find out: "fiction or nonfiction?"  :D ).  Besides these "directive" type dreams, I just found them reassuring and encouraging while I moved into a new phase of dealing with a really confusing situation.  In other words, over time I am learning to trust myself.

Jaded, I don't keep a regular journal although I think I could benefit from this as well.  I've read that research shows that writing about events and connecting our feelings about those events in writing as well is extremely healing.  At the time I tried to start a journal, I was obsessing about a particular relationship and it was just too much.  But perhaps it is time to try again. (Here come the holidays  :shock: !) Personally, I find it takes more discipline for me to keep interested in the same thoughts that grind through my head...I'd rather mull over the pink twinkies, go figure!!   :D

Oh, maybe this counts: I'd been reading Julia Cameron's books and they are wonderful. I would do the exercises and (maybe sometimes) do the "morning pages" as she calls them (the journaling).  Basically, a psychic constitutional.  She doesn't nag or conjole, the caring and empathy for her reader really comes through.  

But still, I'm stuck on the image of a young 18th century debuttante scribing her most heartfelt thoughts on parchment paper in perfect penmanship for future history interns to pour over as they puzzle through pieces of her illustrious life.  Would Louisa May Alcott blog?  Maybe she did and she wisely burned the really tedious stuff.

Thanks for your interest!  Hope it is useful, S.