Every night when you go to sleep your subconscious mind gets to work. The mind works over the day’s events and starts to find solutions to problems. Your dreams can offer insights and answers to things that are troubling you, so it is worth keeping a dream journal so you can store these snippets of subconscious wisdom.
The first step in creating a dream journal is in preparing yourself to dream when you go to bed. Turning off your phone and putting aside your concerns when you go to sleep is a good start. Try to relax and wind down before you go to sleep and prepare your mind to dream. If you are seeking guidance on a particular issue, you may want to think it over as you drift off to sleep and ask your subconscious to find a solution.
As Mary Hulnick of the University of Santa Monica explained:
When you wake up, resist the temptation to reach straight for your phone. Instead take a moment to recall your dreams and write them down. It is worth keeping a pen and your dream journal by your bed for use in the morning or if you wake up in the middle of the night. Don’t worry if you don’t remember much to start with, write down whatever you do recall, and over time you will find you remember more of your dreams. Even if you wake up with an emotion such as feeling sad, then write that down. It may trigger your subconscious mind later too.
When it comes to interpreting your dreams don’t bother with a ‘book of dreams’ that explains the meaning of different dreams. While these have proven popular for decades the truth is that your dreams are personal and will have their own meanings that are yours and yours alone. Over time, your dream journal can reveal what different dreams mean to you.