Why You Should Journal Your Dreams

Keeping a dream journal can help you decode your subconscious.

This piece is part of a month-long Wanderlust and YOGANONYMOUS series about the power of journaling. 

Let’s get under the covers and snuggle into the deeper meaning of all things twinkle-twinkle, lullaby, and shut-eye. Let’s talk about dreams. We’ve all had them: The falling dream that wakes us up with a shudder, the teeth falling out dream where we check our mouths the instant we wake up, the oh-my-gosh-I’m-flying dream, or the dang, where did I leave my pants I am naked in front of a crowd dream… Oh the things our minds get up to when we sign off for the day!

Though odd they may seem, there are some things to be learned from these subconscious moments. Yes, indeed—they are messages from our higher self to pay attention to something in our waking life. So, grab a pen, a piece of paper, and get ready to take notes on all the adventures and antics your soul gets up to while you sleep—so you may uncover what your dreams really mean.

Since we are sharing a hypothetical bed together, I figure I have an opener to get up close and intimate with you. And I have something to share: I have a dream journal. Yes. Is it like keeping dream homework? Sometimes. Do I occasionally get a mind-blowing, what-the-hell-is-that-about dream download? Definitely! In fact, a few days prior to being asked to write this piece, as fate would have it, I had a particularly crazy dream. I made note of it, and my morning dazed and confused scribblings read:

Eating a cupcake. Found glass in it. Then coughed up glass, and spent the rest of the dream panicking and pulling glass pieces from my throat. Woke up coughing.

By using short sentences to sum up my dream, it meant I could more easily research its meaning when my waking mind came to. Stay tuned to uncover my findings… In the meantime, here are some suggestions to help you in your dream journaling endeavor.

3 Tips for Dream Journaling:

1. Keep Record
Keep a logbook next to your bed that you can scribble in while the dream is still fresh in your thoughts. This will benefit you, even if they are half-asleep, somewhat cryptic messages to your more awake self. Keeping a pen, pad, or even the notes section of your smartphone on the ready means you will have a prompt to keep track of your dreams before they are wiped from your memory by the time you have stumbled to the bathroom. Make an effort to remember your dreams, however brief, and jot them down.

2. Take Note
The key to recording your dream is to pay attention to the small details that you see. Colors, feelings that were stirred up, actions that you took in your dream—everything has a hidden meaning you can research when you are more awake. Take a minute to reflect on your dream—what subtleties do you remember?

3. Look Into Your Dream
There are some great dream dictionaries available that can be handy to keep on your bedside table for quick-grab dream decoding. Or, for the New Age dream-seeker, Google the meaning of your dream. You will be surprised at what may surface from finding out the hidden messages of your dream through interpretation. You may literally feel more awake through the day, because you would have gotten something to pay attention to from your decoding of last night’s dream—go figure!

Top Dreams and Their Meanings:

  • Falling: Signifies a need for control in your waking life, or you may feel out of control.
  • Flying: Represents a sense of freedom, or overcoming something in your waking life.
  • Naked: Signifies a sense of vulnerability, or being exposed.
  • Teeth falling out: Reflects your self-confidence, view of yourself, or need for self-love.
  • Pregnancy: A sign of personal or self-development and growth in your waking life.
  • Running: Signifies something you may be chasing or trying to avoid in life.

So what did my traumatizing glass-cupcake dream mean? I searched the meaning behind throat, or sore throat, and found…

To dream that you have a sore throat or have throat problems suggests that you are having problems saying what you really think. You are having difficulties experiencing how you feel and conveying your thoughts. You may feel threatened or vulnerable when you express yourself. (Credit: dreammoods.com)

Then I researched the meaning of the glass…

To dream that you are eating glass highlights your vulnerability, confusion, and frailty. You may have difficulties in communicating your thoughts across and getting the right words out. Alternatively, it may symbolize your hurtful and cutting comments. Perhaps you have been hurt or disappointed by something that someone had said. Or you need to be careful in how you phrase and word things or run the risk of offending others. (Credit: dreammoods.com)

Yep—how’s that for a message straight from my throat chakra to speak my truth, find my voice, and to not be afraid to fully express myself. Either that or it could simply be my waistline trying to subliminally train my mind to not crave cupcakes… Probably a bit of both!

Emma MildonEmma Mildon is an author, columnist, and spiritualist who specializes in spiritual research that she shares to her readers through her interactive website, app, and books. Giving her readers easy access to everything from spiritual scriptures across all religions, to different types of yoga to explore, to crystals, and feng-shui—right down to how to work out your astrology and numerology. Be sure to check out her book The Soul Searchers Handbook or visit her website, emmamildon.com. You can also find Emma on TwitterFacebookInstagram, and Google+.