Dreams may be a secret window into your feelings, act as inspiration for a creative project, and even help you solve problems.Whether you recall many of your dreams or none at all, read on to find out how many dreams you’re actually experiencing during any given night.
How Much You Really Dream Each Night
Just because you don’t remember dreaming doesn’t mean you’re not doing it! You generally dream at least four to six times per night, usually during the most active REM stage of sleep if you’re over 10 years old. (Kids younger than 10 dream only about 20 percent of the time in REM sleep.) You usually dream longer as the night goes on because the REM stage of sleep can be anywhere from five minutes early in the night to as long as 34 minutes towards the end of your sleep session. So if you snooze for, say, eight total hours a night, two of them may be spent dreaming.
Why You Forget Your Dreams
You may not think that you’re a big dreamer because most of us forget 95 to 99 percent of our dreams. Why you don’t recall most of your dreams remains a mystery, but one theory is that it’s simply because you’re not concentrating on them while you’re snoozing. (People who think dreams are important and are more interested in them are likelier to recall them—probably because they are motivated to pay attention to their dreams). Another theory is that our lack of recall is partly due to the hormone associated with memory (norepinephrine) being turned off while we sleep, so our brain doesn’t actually encode our night visions into memories.
How To Better Remember Your Dreams
A trick to keeping your dreams from leaving your mind as soon as you wake up is simply to tell yourself that you want to remember your dreams as you’re falling asleep. Keep a dream journal by your bed so you can jot down everything that you can remember about your dreams the second you wake up—before thoughts about the day ahead clutter your mind. Write down everything (even if you can recall only vague images or snippets of your dreams) in order to train your brain to better remember them in the future.
4 Qualities All Big Dreamers Possess
1. A big dream view
As a big dreamer, you’re interested in the end game. You don’t let yourself get bogged down in the little details.
You stay focused on what matters, keeping your eye on the prize, and your hands busy working toward that ultimate goal.
Each day counts, and every effort helps bring you closer to your desires. But ultimately, you let yourself be consumed by that big dream view.
It becomes your waking dream, your obsession, your purpose.
2. A willingness to defy the odds
Big dreams are supported by a resolve that is unshakable. Big dreamers defy the odds each and every day. No matter what’s stacked against them, they’re determined to come out on top.
Someone telling you that you can’t is just fuel for the fire. The naysayers will always have an objection or two, but it’s up to you to power through and stay focused on that end goal.
With perseverance and dedication, nothing is outside the realm of your reach.
3. An unshakeable resourcefulness
When you’re pursuing something big, you need to use everything you’ve got at your disposal to your advantage.Big dreamers find a way to make their big dreams a reality by finding a use and purpose in all that’s available to them. Resourcefulness and adaptability is the name of the game.
If you don’t have the tools you need, improvise. Fake it till you make it. Find a way to make use of what you have, right here, right now.
4. A ridiculously easily excitable nature
If you’ve ever met someone with big dreams, you know just how passionate and excitable they get about their aspirations.
If you ask them what they’re working on, or what the next stage of their project is, they don’t hesitate to launch into a half hour inspirational speech about goal setting, productivity, passion work, and chasing your dreams.
If you want to become a big dreamer, surround yourself with big dreamers.
Their exuberance will ignite your imagination and fuel your drive.
10 Questions to Test Your Dream
- The Ownership Question: Is my dream really my dream?
- The Clarity Question: Do I clearly see my dream?
- The Reality Question: Am I depending on factors within my control to achieve my dream?
- The Passion Question: Does my dream compel me to follow it?
- The Pathway Question: Do I have a strategy to reach my dream?
- The People Question: Have I included the people I need to realize my dream?
- The Cost Question: Am I willing to pay the price for my dream?
- The Tenacity Question: Am I moving closer to my dream?
- The Fulfillment Question: Does working toward my dream bring satisfaction?
- The Significance Question: Does my dream benefit others?