People who remember their dreams show different brain activity.
A 2014 study found more spontaneous activity
in a part of the brain called the temporo-parietal junction among
people who regularly recall their dreams, compared with people who
rarely do. The differences weren't just during sleep, but also while
study participants were awake. Previous research found that people who remember more dreams also react more to sounds during sleep (and while awake) than people who don't remember many dreams.
Your dreams aren't weird, that is, until you call them weird.
"When you're having the dream, no matter how 'weird' it is -- you're in a
poker game with a giant green squirrel and Queen Mary -- it's not
weird," says Naiman. "It's only after you wake up and step into the
waking world and look at the dream that it seems weird." Comparing
"weird" in the dreaming and waking worlds is like comparing dietary
customs in two wildly different cultures, he says, making one seem
strange in the context of the other. "We need to refrain from
exclusively interpreting dreams from the waking world," he says -- which
means it's time to toss those dream dictionaries.