What Are Your Dreams Telling You?
I am not an expert on dreams, even though over the years I have used Freudian and Jungian frameworks to support my clients and patients in the deciphering of theirs.
This wonderous consciousness state to which reports say we actually forget about 95% of the content, is a state that keeps many of us in awe for hours and days many times. Other times, it startles us as the content seems so far from who we think we are in this world. I have recently been introducing more Neurolinguistic Programming (NLP) techniques into my therapy and coaching practice. In short, NLP acknowledges that a word becomes an image in our mind, and that image is symbolic of something. We give that something a meaning. Thus the importance of choosing words as they are spells that we bring into being. There are many ways to go about dreams. Depending on where you come from in the world you may approach it differently; be it as a connection to spirit, a message from the unconscious or subconscious, or just a replay of what you watched the night before. What we do know is that certain people have an infinity to it, such as my colleague Dr. Jonathan Hyland and my friend, educator and writer, Laetitia Clement. I personally also use NLP techniques to enhance my dreamstate and have had the pleasure of having them analyzed day by day. I asked my dear friend Laetitia to share some insight for my clients here. This is what she suggests: Culturally, symbols can have a different signification, seeing a white cow in a dream will not have the same significance for an Indian woman than for a French farmer for instance. However, some symbols can be universal such as driving, cutting your hair or dreaming of water. Dreaming is an expression of your subconscious: what your eyes saw during the day, what you heard, what us, as human beings did not notice because of our busy life, the brain remembers it, and during your sleep, when you are usually deprived of sound and sight, it connects the dots and tells you a message.
Let’s talk about water. Dreaming of water is common, but if you dream about a swimming pool, a fountain or the ocean, it will not have the same meaning. A swimming pool is a closed area, quite safe as you usually have no waves but you do have stairs to get in and out. A person who would hesitate to start a new business and who would dream about a swimming pool, one may say that they are reluctant to get out of their comfort zone. And if the water is clear, it could mean that their fear is not justified. Clear water is always a good sign. You see things with clarity, and one should not be afraid to start a new project because your subconscious knows. On the contrary, someone who would plan family holidays and dream about an ocean with dark waters and huge waves should think twice about those holidays. Dark waters mean that there are hidden things that have not being said for example. The waves show a tumultuous journey, they can be impressive, pulling you in a back and forward pattern. It does not mean you should cancel the family vacation. This dream would just warn you to be aware, communicate with the other members, maybe make some concessions, plan a shorter journey or with less people. It is also very common that people have the same dream. Why is that? The answer is quite obvious: they did not acknowledge what their subconscious was telling them and kept following the same path in the same way. Without surprise, your brain insists and thus the dreamis recurrent. If we go back to our dark and wavy ocean, it is highly likely that if you think differently about your family trip, the following day the water may look clearer, maybe it will be a quiet lake or a majestic fountain. Driving or being driven is another common dream and the meaning changes according to the way of transportation and who drives. Driving is moving forward, leading your life in general. Are you driving or is anyone else driving for you? (meaning: taking decisions for you) Maybe you cannot see who drives, as if you were taking the train for example. How is the driver? Is it slow, fast, or are you stuck in a traffic jam? How is transportation (meaning: the tool you use to lead your personal/professional life)? Is it a luxurious red car, an old van, a busy bus, a horse or an empty plane? All of the details have their importance: colors, numbers, names, words, was it day time? Night time? And more importantly: what were you thinking at that precise moment? Were you surprised, mad, puzzled, were you a mere spectator of the scene?
If you are interested in deciphering your dreams, I highly recommend hiring a professional. You will be amazed with the results.