Creative People Remember More Dreams

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People who are creative, imaginative, and prone to fantasy are more likely to have vivid dreams at night and to remember them when they wake up, University of Iowa research shows.
David Watson, a professor of psychology in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, said that the more bizarre a dream was the more likely his subjects were to remember it.
Dream recall varied widely, with a few participants remembering a dream every night and others never remembering a dream throughout the three-month study. On average, participants recalled dreams three or four days per week.
This study, which appears in the May 2003 issue of the journal Personality and Individual Differences, represents the largest and most comprehensive analysis of individual differences in dream recall to date. Watson asked 193 college students to record each morning for 14 weeks what time they woke up, what time they had gone to bed the previous night, whether they had consumed alcohol or caffeine within four hours of bedtime, and whether they remembered any dreams upon waking.
He found that neither sleep quality nor length of sleep was associated with dream recall, although students who maintained inconsistent bedtime schedules tended to report slightly more sleep- and dream-related experiences. There also was a slight tendency for “evening people” to remember more of their dreams.
Most significantly, Watson found individuals who are prone to absorption, imaginativeness, daydreaming and fantasizing are particularly likely to remember their dreams.
“There is a fundamental continuity between how people experience the world during the day and at night,” he said. “People who are prone to daydreaming and fantasy have less of a barrier between states of sleep and wakefulness and seem to more easily pass between them.”
This research is an extension of Watson’s earlier studies on mood and temperament. He has studied circadian rhythms and differences between morning and evening people, which led naturally to studies of sleep and dreams. Watson said studying dreams is important to understanding what happens in the brain during sleep.

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Very true c_n15,

I happen to be the one who daydreams a lot, etc. :smile: I remember my dreams a lot even though I don’t even try.
It’s an interesting article! :biggrin:

Interesting. It’s funny though, I tend to remember the dreams that are the most realistic.

yes ,it also has to do with the right side of the brain (artistic ppl are right side of the brainers) and artistic ppl are always creative, because the right side has to do with alot of things liek that. It probably mentions somehting like this in the article, i for one am too lazy to read it :cry:

That’s damn good to know. I write lyrics, music, do graphic design, and play guitar. :happy:

that’s it. Time to start daydreaming, forming and playing music in my head, and using xray vision :wink: more often!! Darn stupid uncreative mind!! Get to work!!

hell yeah, time to fantasise… oh yeah… right there… thats the spot… (moans)… ohhhhhh

phew, that was awsom, i dont know why i havnt being doing more of tha in the first place! :cool_laugh:


Well, that’s nice to know. I think I’m quite creative and daydreamy, and I have reasonably good dream recall, although it could be better.

interesting article! i was wondering if everyones dreams are crazy or not…
I never daydream anymore, usually im occupied or have to be focusing on something like the professor. i have found it easier to remember dreams after starting a dream journal. it forces you to remember stuff.

X-ray vision? You’ve got that too?

I think you have to be a right brain thinker to even ACCEPT that lucid dreaming can happen… Not many analytical people in here today huh?

  • feed_my_BRAIN

Maybe. There are skeptics out there, but mostly people who just aren’t aware of LD’s existence. I think left-brainers could be convinced by some of the scientific data and lab experiments, though.

hahaha!!! lol, nice one superman!(clark)

id like to point out im a creative boy, exept my dreams are normal and dull… Anyone els got this going?

I’m wondering why they felt this idea warranted a full investigation and study. It seems pretty obvious to me that creative people with heavily exercised imaginations would have considerably less trouble recalling their dreams than those who dream of generic, boring activities.

The reason for this is pretty simple, and it all comes back to the way memory works. If you experience something that you’ve been through plenty of times before, like getting ready for school, or using your computer, there probably won’t be anything unusual or extraordinary to distinguish this memory from any of the others involving this or a similar action. This means that it’s going to be more difficult for anything to remind you specifically of the dream, without simply associating with the existing strongest memory on the topic.

If, on the other hand, you have a bizarre dream about dragons and ancient castles, then the associated memories won’t be able to ‘hide’ as much among other similar experiences. There always needs to be a ‘trigger’ memory, something that stands out and allows you to identify an experience and separate it from other similar experiences. Boring dreams about regular daily activities usually won’t provide a trigger to be individually distinguished, and unless you pay particular attention to recalling dreams as soon as you wake up (something I guarantee most of the participants in this study did NOT do) then it’ll probably be gone forever.

To put it simply, there needs to be something unique or unusual in the memory for it to be found later, and creative fantasy dreams obviously contain significantly more of these than your regular “I’m late for work again” dream.

Just my initial thoughts.

I’m a fairly artistic and creative person, as I write stories, roleplay from time to time, draw and fantasize about a lot of things. I think my dreams reflect this. I have some of the most weird dreams, for example, last night when i owke up and went back to sleep, i had a dream that my dog had split his head open right down the middle. His entire brain was exposed and it had “dried” up, putting him in like a sort of vegetative state and he was blind. They said there was no way to fix him up, but I refused to believe it. As soon as I started to question it’s reality, I wake up, stupid garbage men.

I think this holds true, as long as I get a good night’s sleep I remember dreams.

I’m a left brained person, meaning I’m a rational person instead of a creative one. I’ve found that I have good dream recall despite this but my dream scenes tend to be distorted mirrors of my waking life. If I were more creative, I’d probably have more interesting dream scenes.

When I first found out about LDs, I went around asking to see who knew anything about it and who was interested if I explained it to them.

Normal people: Didn’t know what it was and thought it was weird and impossible

Different people(creative, stood out in a crowd, etc.): Some knew(heck a few even did it naturally) and does that didn’t were definately interested about it or thought it was neat. I simply picked out the creative people I knew and they all ended up knowing something.

It really got creepy when I relized that many of the people who did know had ADHD or ADD(like me). Reminds me of the book “the indigo children” where the author states that ADD children are more in tune with things like this.

I would definitely agree with that,

I would say im very artistic, I love fantasy movies,drawing, i learnt to play guitar on my own and drums for 5 years. Even dreams, i also think that the more artistic you are, the more you believe in this stuff and things with the mind.

I’d hate to disagree, but I am a left-brained thinker and I immediately accepted LDing as true upon reading this web site.