What Do Our Dreams Mean?
We’ve all seen a variety of dreams in life. Sometimes we fly, sometimes we fight, sometimes we have nightmares or relive past experiences..
Dreams are an act of our mind projecting images. While you may not remember every dream, people are thought to dream between 3 to 6 times every single night.
So what can we interepret/learn from these visions in our sleep? While some neuroscientists think that dreams are just an unintended consequence of underlying neurological proccesses, others think that dreams are a form of consciousness that unites past, present and future in processing information from the first two, and preparing for the third. The opinions are varied and, as of now, we truly don’t know the answer.
I personally believe there is merit in their meaning- we don’t dream certain things for no reason. So let’s take a look at a few of the most common types of dreams that we have, and what they might mean:
Flying (or the ability lack thereof)
Sigmund Freud, one of the fathers of modern psychology and founder of psychoanalysis believes flying dreams are to do with seeking sexual experiences. Others believe flying means a literal “flight” or soaring sensation in regards to a past or present experience in life. When I reached a serious milestone in my music career several months ago, I had several occasions where I dreamed I was jumping off a large cliff and catching myself mid-air, gaining the ability to fly freely. It’s an empowering sensation.
If you have a dream about flying, think about something recently in your life that you’ve accomplished and felt proud about, like you were “soaring” up in the clouds of success.
Alternatively, if you have dreams where you are trying to fly but unable to, this may signify a lack of “soaring” success in a particular part of your life. These types of dreams could perhaps indicate a wake-up call that you need to believe in yourself and take greater risks.
Nightmares are a very common type of dream. The intensity of a nightmare can greatly vary, but they all share a common theme- they make you feel anxious, scared, or hurt. It is common to have nightmares during times of high stress.
Dreams of your partner leaving are also common types of nightmares. These thoughts are based on insecurities. If you have a nightmare, try to think about something in your life that is causing stress or anxiety. Or perhaps, what sorts of concerns do you find your mind frequently visiting throughout the day? Nightmares could very well indicate that you need to confront these issues and find a way to grow and learn from them.
Though not always negative, dreams of being chased are usually based on a feeling of avoiding something that is presumably chasing after you. This could be running away from a particular feeling you have inside yourself, from a situation in life, or perhaps from an actual person.
These types of dreams often appear in consecutive bursts, likely because the thing that is chasing you is.. still chasing you. Think about something in your life that you are avoiding, or perhaps someone that is trying to get something from you. While confronting it/them may or may not be the right solution, you must come to terms and find an outcome to move forward.
It is actually quite common to dream about being involved in a fight. What's important to distinguish is the condition that brought on the fight. If someone is attacking you and you’re fighting back, this may signify that fearful situation have caught up to you and you are now confronting them. If you instigated the fight, this could mean you’re at a place in life where you are fighting for your goals or for something you believe in.
What about if you’re unable to muster strength in a fight? Are you finding yourself unable to run fast enough or punch hard enough? Some believe that this sensation is actually due to the motor system in your body being non-functional during sleep. Your brain, which is typically involved in deciding to perform physical motion during your waking state, is unable to trigger the same responses from your body.
Though another possibility is that the challenges you're facing in life seem too great, and you feel unable to conqure them.
This is another common dream that we all have at some point in our lives. Falling dreams typically signify a sense of lost control, or a shift in the balance of our lives.
An important distinction to make is how the falling came about. Did someone push you off the edge? This could signify feelings of betrayal or that someone acted behind your back. Did you trip/slip off of an edge? This could signify that something in your own life has lead to feelings of lost control.
There are many types of dreams that we can experience in our sleeping states, between 3-6 per night! While some people believe dreams to be nothing more than a background, cognitive process that has no affiliation to our waking reality, others (myself included) believe dreams to be subconscious messages projected from our brains.
Like any self reflective experience, the power from understanding dreams comes in what actions we take based on them. If you identify a cause for a particular dream, identify it in your waking life and take action to resolve it, or feed it- if it’s a positive.
I hope you find this article insightful. Please share using the buttons below and tweet at me if you have any thoughts or ideas!