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Mulot's avatar

How can I stop remembering my dreams when I awake ?

Asked by Mulot (682 points ) June 24th, 2008

I always remember my dreams, and for some reason, I really would like not to wake up with theses dreams on my head.

I know that if I sleep in a room where the temperature is about 10° Celcius, I can’t remember my dreams or I don’t dream. But is there any other solution ?

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23 Answers

osullivanbr's avatar

I’m not sure if simply trying to forget the dream is the way to go. I think the bigger question is why these dreams are happening in the first place, generally it’s some kind of worry or stress that’s causing them.

My suggestion would be this…
Why not tell us about the dreams and the collective might be able to help figure it out for you. If you know what’s causing them and can action that accordingly, they may very well stop.

The guys and gals here have a kinda strange ability to know what dreams mean. They’ve done if for me before, and their advice helped me.

sferik's avatar

(Assuming you are of legal drinking age) have you tried drinking a beer before you go to sleep? Beer has a way of making the brain forget what happened the previous night.

Vincentt's avatar

I’d love to start remembering my dreams when I awake, I never do :(

shrubbery's avatar

Instead of having them bounce around in your head, try writing them down as soon as you wake up. That way you can forget about them for the rest of the day until you feel like having a look and working out what’s on your mind.

Mulot's avatar

Thanks for your advices, and yes I’m over legal drinking age in my country, but I don’t want to become an alcoholic or booze before going to bed, even if I’m a student ;-) .

About my dreams, it’s often weird, with thinks that has been done, some that will be done, and with strange feelings of “déjà-vu”, since I remember my dreams, I’ve got sometimes dreams where I remember other dreams, and it can be very very weird !

Just for example, yesterday, I decided to schedule an appointment go to the MD for today. One of this night dream was about it : I was going to this appointment, with my car, followed by my sister car. Then I parked a few meters from the MD office, and I walked through a park, where I saw a girl. This girl was a girl I know in real life, and that I found very attractive. She walked out the park, I followed her a few steps back, playing with my camera bag I used to take when I walk around.

Then I met a man on a bicycle who talked to her. I walk in front of them, she didn’t notice me. After a few meters, I come in a house where a secondary entrance for a university restaurant i set. A woman said me that’s it’s close at this time of year and I woke up.

I can explain few things, like my sister with who I just talk before going to bed, or the girl, she really exists and I saw her in my dream exactly how she was. For my camera bag, that’s not the point because I purchase a DSLR for my birthday, and the appointment with the MD.

That was just one of my dream, but this dream occurs between 9:30 am and 11:20 am (I know I’m on holiday so I sleep a lot ^^). I know this because I was awoken at 9:20 and I felt asleep few secondes later.

Don’t know if this gonna help you, it’s not a weird one, others can be very strange, even for me.

Response moderated
osullivanbr's avatar

I’m very sorry about this now mate, but I don’t understand why dreams like that would be upsetting to you. Dreams are strange things. What you’re describing seems perfectly normal to me. Am I missing something?

marinelife's avatar

You dreams must be very vivid if they are haunting you.

Have you ruled out that there is a common theme to the dreams? Do you have a similar feeling when you wake up and remember them? If you spend a little bit of time thinking about the dreams or dream that seem the most disturbing, what about it is bothering you? This site interpretation may or may not be helpful.

We ignore the messages from our subconscious at our peril. If it can’t get through to you via the dreams, it will use another method like a bout of illness.

If, after review, you do not think it is something significant that you need to pay attention to, try directed dreaming. Just before you fall asleep, think about what you will dream about that night. A safe, pleasant experience such as a day on the beach or a walk in the woods or whatever you enjoy.

Good luck, and let us know what happens.

Mulot's avatar

Thanks for your responses Marina and Osullivanbr.

Some of my dreams can disturb me : It happens that I dream about a very pleasant thing, doing something I like, being with someone I care. And when I wake up, I know that what happened wasn’t real and that I had to “face reality” . My life isn’t a Nightmare at all of course, but I wish I could forget dreaming about persons I tried to put out of my mind, that cause me too much trouble. I’m here talking mainly of girls, that I often dream of.

I will see what this night is gonna makes me dream of !

osullivanbr's avatar

Would you not think though that this your body and minds way of telling you that you need closure or something with these people. I could be wrong.

Mulot's avatar

I slept not very well this night. I tried to follow Marina advice : I tried to concentrate and think about me going on a trip to Sweden and me learning Swedish.

Result : I was snowboarding, and I met an ex mate that I really don’t care about, who was bothering me in my winters activity. Beyond others “littles dreams” which I don’t remember so much, I know that I saw a world map, focused on Scandinavia, but the Sweden borders were totally different from the real ones. So maybe I should try another this time to think about another subject and see if it appears in my dreams.

About this I consider that it’s really hard to focus on a particular thing when you begin to fall asleep, I know that iof I think about Sweden, I think about how or when I will go there, which means I think of the school allowing me to study in Sweden, which means I think about the city of Belfort where I have to find a flat right now. You see the path that min can take, you begin with a clear point an idea and finnaly you come to thing that has nothing to do at all with this begining.

XCNuse's avatar

Well one way of looking at this is this:
To remember your dreams when you wake up, recall what you can instantly and write it down on a notepad as fast as you can, and keep doing this for a while and when you wake up later on you should be able to recall your dreams more easily as you continue to do this practice.

So I suppose the best thing to do is .. everything opposite to this, wake up, and get your mind on something else as fast as you possibly can, and once you get your mind on something else you shouldn’t be able to recall your dreams unless you really try hard.

that’s my suggestion.

Mulot's avatar

Yes that can be a solution. But I know that I made reference in my dreams to other previous dreams that I don’t remember. It’s really strange, juste like I’ve got two different life, very very strange. Sometimes I have to make the difference between some dreams and my real life, especially when I ‘ve got dreams in relation.

marinelife's avatar

@Mulot You do seem to be an atypical dreamer. My husband can have his whole day thrown off kilter by dreams sometimes.

OK, I have one more suggestion. Normally, I would not make this suggestion, but if you feel there is no important information in your dreams that you need to deal with, and they are disturbing your waking life, you can try setting up a ritual signal for forgetting your dreams.

Victims of childhood trauma will often go to the bathroom at night and use the flushing of the toilet as a signal to “forget” their dreams.

You could do that. Or you could develop your own, such as “When I count to three, I will not remember my dreams,” or “After I write in my journal, I will forget what I have written,” or “I will burn this blank piece of paper. When it is in ashes, my dreams will be blanked from my mind.” I think a ritual that involves a physical trigger would probably work best.

Note: This is something you will have to work at. It is probably not going to work the very first time.

everval's avatar

I know that if you’re extremely tired when you go to bed you won’t remember… so you could use excercising before going to bed.

Skaggfacemutt's avatar

I’m not sure why you want to forget your dreams. They don’t sound particularly disturbing. However, I only remember my dreams if I am startled awake – either by the alarm clock or by a really scarey dream. If you can find a way to wake yourself up in the morning in a more gradual manner, you might not bring your dreams with you.

Mulot's avatar

Thanks for your answer, I’m now still remembering my dreams in the morning, but now I prefer laugh at the weird I can have, and focus on the pleasant one I had. :-)

Speranza's avatar

Perhaps it’s the dream equivalent of work-life balance. If you make what you are doing in your waking life ‘more real’ than anything you dream, ie invest in it emotionally, real life will dominate. You sound as though you are almost scared of losing yourself emotionally. (Do you have some issues about coping with life which you are ignoring, which maybe you need help with?)

I’m assuming pot isn’t involved here, cos if it were the answer would be simple! lol

JLeslie's avatar

I think as soon as you wake up you have to switch your thoughts. My feeling is if you write down the dream or continue to analyze or think about it, you further write it into your memory. If you know how to meditate that might help, even just picturing one constant thing in your mind (it can be a carrot, it doesn’t matter what). Personally, I only usually retain memories of scary/violent dreams, or ones that are very obviously related to my real life (like dreaming I will be late for a flight, when I am flying the next day).

tadpole's avatar

do something drastic as soon as you awake, to change the mood, to disturb your recollections…..put the tv on, put the radio on…or you could set the radio to come on when the alarm goes…the element of surprise might help shake your thoughts…have a shower….break things up….

cricketcu2's avatar

if you pay close attention to your sleep state i think you will find that you are not really asleep when you see these things.there is a place we go just before sleep,a safe place if you will,that is where you see these things your not really asleep it`s just easier for you to believe you are sleeping.Just by me telling you this you will see it now for yourself and it will scare the h@#$ out of you!i wish i could tell you how to make it stop but i can`t,thats why i`m here too,looking for answers.i`ve had them sense i was 7 i`m 37 now :( i`ve actually learned how to wake myself from my dreams when i don`t like where they are going so now i nearly never sleep,don`t do this.

Chucklog's avatar

By own experience, XCNuse and JLeslie have the answer: when you wake up DO NOT THINK of your dreams, do not try to remember them, anything. It takes a while but it works.

flutherother's avatar

For some reason I don’t understand I don’t think we are meant to remember our dreams. They generally disappear on waking and even if I remember a little of a dream it tries to evade capture and it takes a real effort to bring it back. You are different from most people in that you remember your dreams as a matter of course. I don’t know why that is but you don’t seem comfortable with it. Perhaps you are not entirely comfortable in bed at night and your sleep is shallow. You say when the temperature is 10 degrees you don’t remember your dreams. Perhaps there is a clue here. You are unusual however and I’m sure there is a scientist doing sleep research at the moment who would love to hear from you.

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