Friday, September 17, 2010

Sleeping to dream about you (and I'm so tired...)

I'm sure many of us understand the sentiment in Jason Mraz's song "Sleeping to Dream".  I've certainly had my days that I can't wait to go to sleep, with the hope that I might dream about someone or something in particular.

But is it possible to make yourself dream about that special someone?  What about using your dreams to solve some problem you're having?  Deirdre Barrett, a psychology professor at Harvard Med, believes it is.  In her interview with Scientific American Mind, Barrett explains dreaming, and techniques for dreaming what you want to dream.

Earlier this week, when I should have been doing my psychology homework, I not-too-accidentally found myself on the Scientific American Mind website, looking for an article that might be more interesting than what I was trying to do.  My long-standing interest in sleep and dreams (and wondering why I have such crazy dreams while many of my friends have none) drew me to this article.

From which I basically learned that if you want to dream about something, you should think about it before you go to sleep.  Even better, Barrett claims, if you have a visual representation of whatever you want to dream about, such as a photo, on your bedside table or somewhere that you can look at it before you go to sleep.

This makes me wonder: if I put a bunch of pictures of people on the wall by my bed, will I have really crazy dreams about them?

(The article also talks about how to know when you're dreaming, and how to influence other people's dreams.  If you're still not interested, you could read about how Tylenol can ease the pain of rejection.)

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