Dream journals are devices meant for users to document details of their dreams in the morning, so it is necessary to keep a journal beside the bed, and to record any details remembered from the dreams, explains the Dream Studies Portal. The journal is meant to be a daily habit.
Ryan Hurd, founder of the Dream Studies Portal, suggests that dream journal users select a notebook of any shape, size, or type, and keep it with a pen next to the bed. In the morning, they should record anything at all from their dreams, however slight. This includes emotions, sensations and thoughts which they may have had during the dream. Recollection of dreams usually improves with time and practice.
Hurd also suggests giving each dream a title. This forces the dreamer to sum up their experience with the dream in a single thematic phrase. Titles also enable the user to cross-reference dreams and find links between them. Each entry should also be marked with the date. Interpretations of dreams should be linked to the dreamer's personal life and what particular objects and events mean to them.
Keeping a dream journal is a common step used to increase lucid, or conscious, dreaming. Some studies suggest that the ability to lucid dream is linked to improved mental performance and strengthened memory. Dreams are scientifically linked to the mind's ability to store memories.