Since ancient times, people have been interested in the meaning of dreams. Previously, it was believed that you could communicate with the Gods, the Universe, and the ancestors through them. In modern culture, attitudes towards dreams have changed somewhat.
Scientists and researchers see them as tools with which you can look into your unconscious and recognize your innermost dreams and intentions. Together with the dream experts at insidemydream.com, we figured out what dreams are, what they mean in real life, and how to interpret the most common ones.
What Are Dreams, and What Is Their Purpose
From the point of view of modern science, dreams are a set of subjective images that arise in our minds during sleep. Studies show that we often see plots that are directly or indirectly related to the real experience. It could be the past day’s events, people you’ve met, places you’ve walked around, and so on. Especially emotional and even traumatic memories can pop up in dreams even after a few years. Such events usually give rise to nightmares.
Even scientists of the past thought about the importance of sleep and why our body needs so much time for this activity. Modern research proves the unequivocal need for regular sleep because during sleep, our brain:
- processes the received information;
- organizes data, filtering out unnecessary details;
- puts new skills and experience into long-term memory;
- performs a protective role, removing unpleasant and painful details;
- creates new neural connections.
If everything is pretty clear about the benefits of sleep, then scientists still argue about the purpose of dreams. Everyone has them, but not every person remembers them. The meanings of dreams are still somewhat of a mystery, but many scientists and psychologists perceive dreams as a way to look into your subconscious.
They are not predictions of future events. They give us psychological “cues” about our problems, ways to solve them, and so on. They do it in some symbolic, veiled form. By understanding the hidden meaning of the images that come to you in dreams, you can understand yourself better. That is why it is so important to learn how to remember dreams and decode them in the right way for you.
Most Common Dream Plots
While many of the situations and objects that we may dream about can carry a meaning that is unique to each person, there are some of the most common plots that experts agree on.
1. Free fall
An uncontrolled fall from a great height can be considered a signal from your nervous system that you can probably not cope with overloads in real life. Perhaps the situation is out of your control, or you feel insecure.
2. Loss of voice
Feeling like you can’t speak is sometimes associated with a real problem called “sleep paralysis.” However, only about 7% of the population is affected. In other cases, the loss of voice may mean the inability to talk about your feelings and anxieties in real life.
3. Being naked
A dream in which you find yourself naked in a public place, as a rule, is accompanied by an internal sense of shame and insecurity that you may experience in real life. Often this is due to false accusations against you, a new job, a promotion, etc.
4. Tooth loss
This process can be related to simple concerns about whether you look good enough or deeper problems like anxiety and bruxism (teeth grinding in your sleep). In any case, these are good reasons to go to the doctor.
5. Being chased
The feeling that someone is chasing you signifies that you are trying to escape problems and are afraid to take responsibility in real life. Sometimes, such dreams are seen by those with debts or addictions (from drugs or alcohol).
6. Exam or test
Dreams associated with tests are usually seen by perfectionists who fear making mistakes and embarrassing themselves. As psychologists say, such stories can haunt graduates for 3-5 years, but then consciousness is rebuilt. If you are stuck in this “post-student” phase, it is a reason to go to a psychologist.
7. Free flight
Unlike falling, the flight is usually initiated by you, and you most of the time enjoy it. Such a dream indicates you have enough strength and determination to cope with some big deal. You confidently move forward with your goals.
Cheating in a dream has nothing to do with cheating in real life. Such plots indicate that the sleeping person has problems with self-esteem and distrusts their partner. Perhaps you think that your significant other devotes little time to you, which leads to thoughts of betrayal.
The concept of pregnancy in the context of dreams should be taken more globally. Of course, there is a possibility of a real pregnancy, but most often, such a plot means the birth and consideration of a new idea, project, and so on. If pregnancy scares you in a dream, it is probably a fear of something new in real life.
Nightmares are usually manifestations of our internal conflicts and can also be triggered by stress, moving to a new place, alcohol, or fatty foods before bed. The plots of such dreams are pretty common to most:
- physical injuries;
- serious illness;
- death of loved ones;
- natural disasters and catastrophes;
- falling into a trap and the inability to escape.
Such dreams usually stimulate us better than positive ones to search for the causes of their appearance and correct errors in real life.
Interpret Dreams From Your Perspective
Even though most symbols and images have established meanings, they can carry their own meaning for each person. We are all unique; therefore, when interpreting dreams, it is essential to consider details such as the subtext of real life and your emotions during sleep. Those things that can scare one person can, on the contrary, reassure you. Nevertheless, similar dreams are not dreamed by people without reason. That is why you can take the generally accepted meaning and run them through your own experience to understand what this or that object means to you.
Please tell us how dreams affect your life. Do you believe they have a specific meaning? Do you have your own tips for deciphering such secret messages?