If you had a dream and you are curious of what it could mean, try not to rely on generic dream dictionaries. There is no universal meaning to dreams, even common dreams such as being naked in public. One dream can mean something different to two different people. It is vital to understand that dreams are personal. That is why dream dictionaries and advice from other websites can be so confusing.
A dream dictionary written by someone else can kick-start metaphorical thinking by providing examples when we are stuck for ideas, or new to dream interpretation. However, ultimately only the dreamer knows the true meaning to their own dream. Interpreting your dreams takes patience, practice, and an open mind.
Learning to interpret your dreams is much like leaning a whole new language. However, do not let that intimidate you. It is a language that your subconscious mind uses to communicate with you, known as your personal dream language. The more dreams you record, the more data you have for understanding your dreams. Be consistent with your dream journal, even if the dreams seem insignificant at first.
A good starting place for dream analysis is identifying common symbols and understanding what they might mean for you specifically. Describe the people, objects, environments, actions and characters in your dream as best as you can. Ask yourself:
•What was the symbol or object doing in your dream?
•What did it look like?
•Where was it?
•How did you feel about it while you were dreaming?
•How do you feel now when you think of it?
Usually, it is not just the symbols in the dream that can tell you what it means. It is a combination of symbols, feelings and context. It’s important to consider the feelings and emotions that are present in our dreams too. What was the overall energy of the dream? What is this bringing up emotionally?
Try to think of anything that comes to mind when analyzing the components of the dream. What is the first thing that comes to mind when you think of this symbol? Be descriptive. Sometimes it helps to describe an object as if you were explaining it to an alien who has never seen it before. This can help to bring up associations. Think about how the dream symbols may relate to your waking life. It may not be obvious at first. Try to think if there is anyone or any context that matches your free associative descriptions.
Describe your dream to someone close to you, ideally someone who knows you well. Sometimes, it’s about how you describe a dream more than the dream itself. As you tell someone else about your dream, try to become aware of how you describe specific symbols that may not be as clear at first. They may be able to give you feedback about specific words you used or facial expressions you made, which could also add to the dream interpretation.
Once you learn your own dream language, deciphering and decoding your dreams becomes easier. Dreams are not always literal. They can be metaphorical or written in a sort of code. This is why keeping a dream journal is so important. It allows you to pick up on patterns, and piece together the pieces of your own personal dream language.