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    Thread: Quality of dreams recalled

    1. #1
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      Quality of dreams recalled

      Hi everyone,

      Although I have been on and off with lucid dreaming for a couple of years now, my progress has been minimal due to the inconsistency of my practice. A couple weeks back I decided to give it one final, long-lasting try; I am really making lucid dreaming a part of my life now. I started slowly, by writing down my dreams if I remembered them, doing some reality checks and spending time on these forums. Gradually I am adding more things to my practice, in a methodological way, to really investigate how different techniques and methods affect my dreaming. Even though I am having some success this way, one issue becomes more and more clear: my memory of dreams is of low quality and detail.

      With some serious journaling and setting solid intentions, I have quickly achieved an average of 5 different dreams recalled per night. This is great and it excites me, but most dreams, or rather fragments, are no longer than a minute, maybe two. Some longer dreams take 5 minutes or so. To illustrate, most of my entries aren't longer than three sentences; some can get to 150 - 250 words, but that only occurs once a night at most. Along with this lack of length, I can only remember the plotlines and most of the characters of most fragments. So I might remember I was at a football field with some people from my university, but not remember what I was really doing at that moment, what I was wearing, who was closest to me, whether we were playing on artificial or natural grass, whether we were actually in the middle of a game or not, etcetera.

      I'm sure some of you have experienced similar issues, and tl:dr - I'm wondering what you did to increase the length and detail of your recalled dreams?
      dreamsOfSpace and Charles3 like this.
      "The scariest, most terrifying thing that I fear?
      My imagination."
      -"I thought you were going to say 'Fear, itself'."
      "Then you have a small imagination."

      "You mustn't be afraid to dream a little bigger, darling."
      "When everything's a surprise, experience takes on a dreamlike quality."

    2. #2
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      Hi EddieDean,
      judging by your join date and LD count you're still pretty 'new to the game'. Don't fear us, at least for myself I'm not that far into it either (almost 2 years since my first lucid dream, and my count is like 50). I can tell you my experience: I'd start by writing down everything I knew, I mean literally everything. I must say I wrote ONE dream entry that consisted of two sentences, and otherwise I could always stick like 100 words at least even if all I remembered was just a single vision. My recall quickly went up from zero to like 0,9 dreams per night on average, and even though I still mostly dream in fragments (not always), I find they're actually completely normal. It has never actually occurred to me to have a dream that lasted longer than 10 minutes. Trust me, they just feel longer in the dream world (days in my experience), it's not until you wake up and realize there were lots of 'cuts' and the whole thing wasn't any longer than 5 minutes. Don't worry. You'll find that with time you'll need 5966 words for a single dream entry (like myself yesterday).
      tl;dr
      write everything you know and dream quality will go up on its own;
      the duration of your dreams is completely normal;
      DJ entry length doesn't have to match the length of the dream.
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    3. #3
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      I am, indeed, pretty new to the game in some ways. Even though I have been looking around these forums for 3,5 years now, I only registered a little over a year ago. Also, if I were to add up all the time I actually spent trying to learn LD'ing seriously I might end up with 6 months of experience. I will start writing down every little thing I can remember; that might work indeed
      Last edited by EddieDean; 07-23-2017 at 12:12 AM. Reason: Spelling
      "The scariest, most terrifying thing that I fear?
      My imagination."
      -"I thought you were going to say 'Fear, itself'."
      "Then you have a small imagination."

      "You mustn't be afraid to dream a little bigger, darling."
      "When everything's a surprise, experience takes on a dreamlike quality."

    4. #4
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      EddieDean,
      I also am not very experienced in LDing having only somewhere between 10-15 LD's since March of this year. One thing I am working on to bring some clarity to my LD's (which I need to do as you can see from my other post that you kindly responded to) is to work on daytime awareness as suggested by Sageous in his WILD and Fundamental classes. Others say the same thing. You can only be as aware of details in your dreams as you are in your wakefulness. Makes sense to me and I'm working on various exercises to increase my awareness when I am awake as well as when dreaming. I find that it is good to log in your dream journal all the specifics of your attempts to LD such as time to bed, time getting up for WBTB, time awake for WBTB, supplements taken, and anything else you can detail. Even your emotions about LDing at that specific time of your attempt. Some of the info I have jotted down has let me see patterns and helped me find somewhat of a "sweet spot" for LDing.
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    5. #5
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      Thanks for the reply! The part about daytime awareness actually makes perfect sense and it is definitely something that could use some work for me. I'm also thinking about starting a daytime journal to get in the habit of recalling things I do in general. What I really need to do is to stop seeing daytime memories and nighttime memories as two essentially different things; if I can really get into that perspective, carrying over awareness and memory into the night shouldn't be too problematic at all.
      "The scariest, most terrifying thing that I fear?
      My imagination."
      -"I thought you were going to say 'Fear, itself'."
      "Then you have a small imagination."

      "You mustn't be afraid to dream a little bigger, darling."
      "When everything's a surprise, experience takes on a dreamlike quality."

    6. #6
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      I agree with the advice given so far, especially giving it some time. Even with regular, consistent practice and motivation, it can take months or years to develop dream recall, kind of like building a muscle. Also, try to keep a positive mindset. I wouldn't say your current level of dream recall is all that bad, so I wouldn't be disappointed with it. Most people just go through life convinced they never dream at all just because they don't happen to remember any of the dreams that they invariably have every single night—you're already well better than par. Be content and encouraged at your current level of progress, and keep an occasional eye over time on your dream recall and watch for improvements that will motivate you further. Maybe even set some realistic goals to push yourself just a bit, if you're the type of person who finds this effective.

      Another thing I found that greatly increased the amount of dream content I was able to retain was when I started recording dreams (or at least brief notes to jog my memory) immediately when I happened to awaken from them, rather than waiting until the morning. I don't know if you're already doing that, but if not, it's worth considering. It might be tedious at times, but I found the results worthwhile. In my case, by jotting down (or speaking into an audio recorder) everything I could recall dreaming (or even just thinking about) every time I woke up during the night before going back to sleep, I found I had so much stuff to add to my dream journal in the morning that I would have otherwise totally forgotten about that I became hooked on the strategy. After a few years, I actually had to start getting a bit selective with what I recorded because I was actually beginning to remember too much—it was starting to take too long to write DJ entries!

      I've also noticed that there seems to be a pretty clear general relationship of the amount and quality of my dream recall to how interested I am in it. I've had periods when other things occupied my mind and dreaming took a bit of a back seat. In those cases, my dream recall has always dropped substantially until my interest returned. So as long as remembering your dream content is genuinely important and interesting to you, I'd say just give it some time and you should see results.
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    7. #7
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      Lately I've been having long and vivid dreams that I can fully recall upon waking up. But rather than having four or five dreams per night, I'm having only one but it is usually too long that it compensates for the short, sporadic dreams. Yesterday I had a dream that felt like an hour in dream time, but as soon as I became lucid I had a false awakening, I think, haha. And like you, I've been on and off, and only a week ago that I've resumed my practice. Most of which consists of meditating lying down as I fall asleep, concentrating on my breath and thinking about having a dream, as simple as that. But that has been only helping me with regular dream recall, not lucid dreaming. Good luck.
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    8. #8
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      Thanks for the input, both of you! I am actually recording immediately upon waking, and I've also found that to be much more effective indeed. Also, you are right in saying that I should be content and give it time. I am often too eager to see results, which only leads to disappointment.
      "The scariest, most terrifying thing that I fear?
      My imagination."
      -"I thought you were going to say 'Fear, itself'."
      "Then you have a small imagination."

      "You mustn't be afraid to dream a little bigger, darling."
      "When everything's a surprise, experience takes on a dreamlike quality."

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