At night as we relax into sleep, our minds go to work, conjuring dreams that are sometimes mundane — a conversation with a friend, perhaps, or a trip to the grocery store — but, more often, are rather bizarre — colorful circuses of imagery and events that, upon waking, seem like nonsense. In actuality, dreams are far from nonsense; they are your subconscious mind’s way of communicating about your innermost feelings, fears, desires and more. Paying close attention to your dreams can help you develop your psychic abilities as you tap into the part of your mind that connects with the collective unconscious. Keep a dream journal beside your bed, in which you can record anything you remember from your dreams as soon as you wake up. Even if it’s just an image or an emotion, write it down. You are likely to uncover a rich treasure trove of intuitive information — perhaps even predictions for the future that can be shockingly accurate.
Some common dream images and their meanings:
· Being caught in public without clothes — This type of dream depends on your feelings or reactions in the dream to interpret properly. How did you feel in the dream when you discovered you were naked? If you felt mortified and exposed, you may be hiding something about yourself or your life from others — whether something shameful or simply an aspect of your personality you’ve kept hidden — and you fear being caught or found out. If other people in your dream didn’t seem to notice your nakedness, this is your subconscious mind telling you not to worry — your anxiety is unfounded. And if you don’t mind your own nakedness in your dream, bravo! This is a symbol of your freedom and pride in yourself. You have nothing to fear or to hide.
· Being chased — This is another type of anxiety dream. There is likely some issue in your life that you are avoiding rather than confronting head-on, and running away from it is causing you some anxiety. When you have this type of dream, try to stop fleeing, and instead, turn and confront your pursuer. Who is chasing after you and why? You may find your pursuer represents not an actual person, but rather some aspect of your life, your fears, or even your own personality. It is also possible that you fear being attacked in waking life, and this fear is manifesting in your dreams. If this is the case, work on becoming powerful in your dreams, whether that means successfully outrunning your attacker or turning and fighting back.
· Flying — Pleasurable flying dreams are the kind that make us want to stay asleep! Not every flying dream, however, is exhilarating. A positive, joyful flying dream signals that you’ve found a brand-new perspective or that you’re confident and on top of a certain situation. A lonely flying dream, on the other hand, signals that you feel isolated from the people and world around you. A dream in which you are trying to fly, but problems keep arising, signals that something you’re working very hard to accomplish is hindered by obstacles. A different perspective may be needed to get things off the ground.
· Houses — If you dream of your current home or your childhood home, you may be dreaming about something concerning your values, a need to be freed from your past, or a desire to start a family. But in general, if you dream of a house, it signifies you — your own soul or psyche. Pay close attention to the appearance of the rooms you visit in this type of dream. If they are bare and empty, you may be feeling lonely or heartbroken. If you discover new rooms you hadn’t known existed, you have untapped creative potential or other personal qualities that should be explored. Dreaming of a house that is shifting, crumbling or falling down represents the person you used to be or the need to rid yourself of old, outmoded ways of thinking and being. If you dream of a house that is being flooded with water or that is washing away, this indicates you are feeling emotionally overwhelmed by some situation or relationship in your waking life.
· Storms — Dark clouds, tornadoes, tsunamis and other storm imagery in dreams signify overwhelming, roiling emotions, such as anger or fear, or impending changes in your life. Perhaps most important in a storm dream is how you react to the conditions. If you feel fear or dread in your dream, this signifies that the emotions or changes are threatening, overwhelming or out of your control. If you feel calm, bold or even exhilarated, on the other hand, this indicates you are building your inner strength or drawing from it, and you trust yourself to handle whatever may come.
· Taking (or failing) a test — You show up for a test but your pencil breaks, or you don’t know any of the answers, or you can’t even read the questions — test dreams are another type of anxiety dream. These dreams signify some important issue that you haven’t given enough attention or preparation, or a challenge you don’t feel prepared to meet. But don’t worry about failing in real life; rather than predicting real-life failure, a test dream is more likely to indicate simply that you care about doing a good job.
· Teeth — Dreams that your teeth are falling out or decaying may be your subconscious mind’s way of processing guilt you feel over a lie you told to someone. This type of dream can also signal general anxiety, as it can arise when you’re actually grinding your teeth in your sleep. Make an effort to be honest, first and foremost, with yourself, and also to relax your body and mind before you go to sleep at night.
Be sure to note recurring dreams — those that feature a similar event or theme that you have on more than one occasion — as these are likely to contain an important message from your subconscious mind. Sometimes we have recurring dreams about an illness that has not yet been diagnosed; something important from the past that has been lost or forgotten; a warning regarding something precarious in our lives; or the solution to a problem that seems, in waking life, to be irresolvable. If you pay close attention, you can decode these seemingly hazy messages and heed their invaluable guidance. Tracking your dreams can be a helpful tool in staying attuned to your deepest emotions and your intuitive knowledge about yourself, your life, and the people around you.