Lucid dream: DREAM RECALL

Lucid Dreams

Lucid dreams are particular kind of dream, where you are aware of the fact that you are dreaming. In lucid dreams you can take an active conscious part in the story, manipulating the flow of the events, making questions and talk deeply with your subconscious. Through this you can understand better yourself, your inner fears and desires.

If you want to learn how to have and remember lucid dream, you have to start to train your dream recall

If you want to read more about lucid dreams:

Dream recall

The Dream recall is the ability to remember and replay the dreams in your mind. Every night we have multiples dreams, even if we do not have conscious memories of theme. Sometime dream are so vivid and impressive that the dream recall is kind of automatic: as we wake up we still have in mind what happened during the dream, especially if sometimes really meaningful takes place.

According to LaBerge, is possible to train our ability to recall dreams. Moreover, the dream recall is necessary if your want to learn how to dream lucidly.

Why dream recall is important

In the book “Exploring the World of Lucid Dreaming” the authors explain why the dream recall are fundamental to develop the ability to have lucid dreams. Dream recall has to be practice every day since you are able to recall at least one dream for night.

So, why is Dream Recall so important?:

“1. First, without recall, even if you do have a lucid dream, you won’t remember it. Indeed, we all probably have lost numerous lucid dreams among the many thousands of dreams we have forgotten in the normal course of our lives.

2. Second, good dream recall is crucial because to become lucid you have to recognize that your dream is a dream, while it is happening. Since they are your dreams that you are trying to recognize, you have to become familiar with what they are like”

Exploring the World of Lucid Dreaming – 1991

How recall your dreams

Now that we know why the Dream Recall is so important, let’s see how can be practiced every day and improved:

1- Plenty of sleep

The first step to good dream recall is getting plenty of sleep. If you are rested, you will find it easier to focus on your goal of recalling dreams, and you won’t mind taking the time during the night to record them.

To remember the dreams is important to be rested enough and be focus on the goal: just this can be useful for a better dream recall. Can be necessary for the purpose to wake up during the night and record want we remember. Every night we dream multiples times and the latest dreams can “cover” the first, make them harder to recall.

“Another reason to sleep longer is that dream periods get longer and closer together as the night proceeds. The first dream of the night is the shortest, perhaps only ten minutes in length, while after eight hours of sleep, dream periods can be forty-five minutes to an hour long.

This could explain why sometime we have the perception that some dreams last for long time, meanwhile other are very fast. Longer dreams are more rich in details and sensation and it’s easier to recollect memories of them.

2- Motivation and dream journal

Another important prerequisite to recalling dreams is motivation. For many people it is enough to intend to remember their dreams and remind themselves of this intention just before bed. Additionally, it may help to tell yourself you will have interesting, meaningful dreams. Keeping a dream journal by your bed and recording your dreams as soon as you awaken will help strengthen your resolve”

The motivation should not be underestimated as it is one of the more powerful tool that we have. Repeat our-self that you want to remember the dreams before go to sleep and keep always with you the dream journal, a diary or book where you can write down our dreams and try to draw part of them.

3- Recall as first thing to do

You should get into the habit of asking yourself this question the moment you awaken: “What was I dreaming?” Do this first or you’ll forget some or all of your dream, due to interference from other thoughts. (…) Also, don’t think of the day’s concerns, because this too can erase your dream recall.

Recall the dreams is easier when we just awake than after some hours, but despite this, sometimes can be very difficult, even if is the first thing that we do. Often when we wake up, our mind start to think about what we have to do next and get prepared: those “interference” can compromise the dream recall, so is fundamental to keep the focus and repeat our-self questions like: “What was I dreaming?“.

If you remember nothing, keep trying for several minutes, without moving or thinking of anything else. Usually, pieces and fragments of the dream will come to you”.

“If you still can’t remember any dream, you should ask yourself: “What was I just thinking?” and “How was I just feeling?” Examining your thoughts and feelings often can provide the necessary clues to allow you to retrieve the entire dream”.

“Even if you don’t remember anything in bed, events or scenes of the day may remind you of something you dreamed the night before. Be ready to notice this when it happens, and record whatever you remember”.

4- Rebuilt the story

Recall an entire and complete dream can seems hard, but with some practice and the right approach you can rebuilt step-by-step most of them. Maybe you think to remind only few fragments, but if you spend time to think about them, little by little more memories will come, and then you will able to replay mentally all your dream.

Cling to any clues of what you might have been experiencing, and try to rebuild a story from them. When you recall a scene, ask yourself what happened before that, and before that, reliving the dream in reverse. It doesn’t take long to build enough skill at this to trigger a detailed replay of an entire dream simply by focusing your attention on a fragment of memory”.

The aim of the dream journal is to collect fragments, scenes, your mood during the dream, sensation, colors, and all the other elements that you can immediately recall after awaking. Once you start to write down, new memories will come to you. You can also read about your old dreams and find a pattern between them.


  • LaBerge, Stephen; Rheingold, Howard (1990). Exploring the World of Lucid Dreaming. ISBN 0-345-37410-X.
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