Dreams are an opportunity to work through things that frighten us in real life, to play out worst-case scenarios in an environment where they have no consequences.
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People are compelled to talk about dreams. It is a natural impulse because dreams are emotional, affect moods, feel profound.
What is unusual is that we live in a culture where we’re expected to forget our dreams. We have this cliche that it is boring to talk about dreams.
Keep a dream journal. Get into a habit, set things up the night before to reinforce your goal.
In lucid dreams, you become aware you’re dreaming. You can take control of the plot. They can be anything from a brief moment where you’re in a nightmare and tell yourself: “this is a dream” and wake up.
Dreaming helps us consolidate new memories: we replay salient experiences from the day, reinforcing new pathways in our brains.
In one study, people enrolled in a French-language intensive course had an increase in REM sleep and dreams while they were studying: their brains were working overtime to master a new language, and that work continued in their sleep.
Most dreams are actually less bizarre than people think. When we dream, the logic centres of our brain – the frontal lobes – go dark, and chemicals associated with self-control, like serotonin and norepinephrine, drop. At the same time, the emotion centres light up: we have a perfect chemical canvas for dramatic, psychologically intense visions.
When psychologists analyzed hundreds of dream reports, they found that most of them could have passed for descriptions of the dreamers’ real lives.
Dreams offer the opportunity to think in a different way and show new answers to problems,
They show us blind spots and help us home in on things we might be neglecting in our personal lives.
A lucid dream is one in which you are aware that you are dreaming even though you're still asleep.
Lucid dreaming is thought to be a combination state of both consciousness and REM sleep, during which you can often direct or control the dream content.
Dreams occur in the Rapid Eye Movement (REM) stage of sleep. We tend to remember the dreams that are seen just prior to waking up, but often the experience of time during our dream and awake stages is skewed.
Swedish and German scientists studied Lucid Dreamers(People who are aware while dreaming and are able to control the dream) and found out that there is a negligible time difference in non-physical tasks done in the dream stage vs in reality.
Physical tasks, like running, took longer in dreams than in reality.