There are some things I always carry with me – keys, wallet, phone, and a bright yellow A5 notebook.
I like to think of the notebook as an analog download of my brain. I follow the bullet journal system, which means it’s a combination of a journal, a planner, a collection of lists, and basically anything else I feel like writing down.
I highly recommend keeping a journal. Writing down your thoughts can be a good way to work through problems and relieve stress. Plus, years later you can look back at it and laugh at what an embarrassing idiot you were. It’s a gift to yourself that keeps on giving.
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Last year, I started keeping a dream journal. I usually forgot my dreams within minutes of waking, and I felt like I was missing out on something. What exciting and surreal adventures would I reveal? What secrets of my subconscious would I uncover? Could there be brilliant ideas percolating in there, possibly even fodder for a novel? I was excited to find out.
It turns out that most of my dreams are deeply mundane, and that was why I didn’t remember them.
Here are some of my most boring dreams:
- I buy a mandoline slicer and use it to make coleslaw.
- I attend a ‘luxury’ retreat that is centred around hand-washing my own clothes.
- Quorn releases some new ‘vegan’ products, but it turns out they still have egg in them.
- I realise I have only one day to live, but begrudgingly agree to spend it at academic conference on a subject I have no interest in.
- I go on a day trip to Aberystwyth. I try to take some photos for Instagram, but later discover my thumb is in every shot.
- At work, I am forced to justify my choice of databases.
- I buy some clothes on eBay, but none of them are any good.
- I under-bake the banana bread.
- I meet a small child in a shop and try to convince him to buy a Wii U. He doesn’t.
- Lying in bed, I notice the houseplant in the corner is about to topple over. I hurl myself across the room to catch it. I wake up standing next to my bed, adrenaline pumping. There is no plant.
- I stay in a holiday rental with a group of people who are constantly reminiscing about something fun they all did while I wasn’t around. On the last day, I do the washing-up.
- I write about the washing-up dream in my dream journal.
Truly, it is amazing what the unconscious mind can imagine. I’m looking forward to the inevitable moment where I re-enact that Calvin & Hobbes strip where Calvin bores himself awake. Maybe tonight’s the night.
Or maybe, if I’m lucky, I’ll have the houseplant dream again. That was pretty thrilling.