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Think You Don’t Dream? Think Again

A man asleep in bed.
Gorodenkoff/Shutterstock.com

Ever heard your friends talk about their vivid dreams and think, “Wait, I never dream.” Well, that’s not actually true.

When you think you don’t dream, you’re just not remembering them. Norepinephrine, the chemical in your brain associated with memory, is at its lowest while you’re in the REM phase of sleep — , which is also the phase in which you dream. As a result, your ability to recall is lowered, as well.

According to Lauri Quinn Loewenberg, dream analyst and sleep expert, your dream memories are gone only 90 seconds after you wake up. So, while not everyone can recall their dreams, everyone has them. In fact, you most likely have multiple dreams per night.

As our sleep cycles are 90-minute increments (remember that nap hack?), Loewenberg says if you’re generally a sound sleeper, you’ll experience dreaming in each cycle. Plus, as they progress, your dreams will get longer.

If you enjoy a dreamless sleep, there’s nothing wrong with that, though. People who regularly have nightmares would, no doubt, be envious.

For those who want to remember their dreams, though, Loewenberg recommends dream journaling. Record your day on the left side of the paper, including how you felt, what you did, and what was on your mind, and then, head to bed.

When you wake up, stay in the same position to keep yourself in a dream-like state and see if you recall any details from your dreams. If you do, jot down any images or thoughts you have next to your daytime musings, and then compare. You can also use a voice recorder if you wake up in the middle of the night.

This should help you remember dreams better over time—including the really strange ones.

[Via Well + Good]

Shea Simmons Shea Simmons
Shea Simmons is an Atlanta-based writer who has written about everything from whether Crisco is a good moisturizer to how to KonMari your space. Her work has appeared in Bustle, My First Apartment, and Make It Grateful. Read Full Bio »

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