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4 Big Tips For Interpreting Your Dreams

Updated on May 16, 2017

Your dreams are as personal as it can get. They are a direct reflection of your worries, fantasies, fears, problems, experiences, and relationships. Often they bring up stuff that your subconscious is holding onto and you simply don't have awareness of during your day.

Sometimes dreams are nonsense, though, which I think is just a way to get rid of some tension and have some fun. But, many times they can help you understand the issues you are dealing with in your life and help you overcome them.

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I have spent over 25 years interpreting my dreams and improving my life because I can do so, which is why I always recommend that other people do the same.

But, many people don't know how to interpret their own dreams end up asking other people to do it for them. The problem with doing that is that other people don't know you like you do, and their interpretation may not be totally right.

For instance, I have an article on Exemplore.com titled 'Interpreting Your Personal Love Dreams'. As of today, I have 681 comments on that article. I would say that about 340 of them are from people who want me to interpret their dream about their partner, ex, or crush. The rest are from me trying to help them interpret their dreams.

I do my best to take into consideration what they tell me, including any big points that stand out such as insecurity, fear, or longing, but the fact is that the only person who can interpret their dreams is them.

You May Not Like How Others Interpret Your Dreams

A good reason to learn how to interpret your own dreams is because other people's interpretations may tick you off!

For example, one woman gave me very little information except for the fact that she was scared during her dream. From my own experience, watching horror movies often brings in scary scenes into my otherwise normal dreams. So, I suggested that she might just be intermingling her life with a horror movie.

That was not what she wanted to hear.

She wrote me, in complete anger, telling me that I was assuming things about people and their dreams. She informed me that she had never watched a horror movie and there was no way that's why she dreamt about what she did.

I can only go off what you tell me and my own intuition. I can't read your mind, see into your life, know what you are or not doing or thinking, understand your past experiences, or understand how you view things. Therefore, asking me to interpret your dreams may result in an answer that doesn't seem fitted towards you.

Dreams are a reservoir of knowledge and experience, yet they are often overlooked as a vehicle for exploring reality.

— Tibetan teacher Tarthang Tulku

4 Tips To Interpret Your Dreams

If you learn how to interpret your dreams, you will never need to ask anyone to help you out again. Plus, there are a few other major benefits.

  • You will gain a sense of awareness about yourself that allows you to understand your life better.
  • You will be able to tackle problems that your dreams make clear to you that you may not otherwise be aware of.
  • You will be able to monitor how your life is going.
  • You will start to discover solutions to problems that you can't access in your waking life.
  • You will learn more about your goals in life.

Sounds good? Following are a few tips to help you get started on interpreting your dreams.

Tip 1: You Got To Write Them Down

If you don't know where to start to interpret your dreams, start by recording them down in a journal specifically for your dreams.

That's it.

Even if you think that you can't remember your dreams well enough to write them down, still set the intention to write them down every morning.

I've found that setting the intention is enough to help you develop the habit of remembering and recording your dreams. If you firmly tell yourself you are going to do it, then you will find yourself doing it. It may take a few days or a few weeks, but with commitment and determination, it will happen!

Why Record Your Dreams?

Recording your dreams gives you a direct link to your awareness and subconscious that you may not have. As you write your dreams down, you start to contemplate certain things in your dreams - and many times you end up connecting the dots between your dreams and your waking life without a lot of struggle.

For instance, if you find that you keep dreaming about your boyfriend cheating, and he's obviously not cheating on you in your waking life, then you may come to realize that you are dealing with an insecurity in your relationship or life that you didn't know you had.

Recording your dreams also helps you find recurring themes and issues in your dreams. Without writing them down, you will forget past dreams - especially important details. But those dreams and details may be very relevant to a dream you have a month later, so it's nice to be able to refer back to them.

Lastly, recording your dreams help you become better at remembering your dreams. The more you do it, the more naturally you remember your dreams. You will find yourself needing more and more pages to write on because details will come to you easier the more practiced you get at recalling and recording.

Tip 2: Pay Attention To How Certain Things Make You Feel

Start paying attention to how things make you feel in your everyday waking life.

In your dreams, you will bring up symbols, people, situations, and other things, and if you know how those things make you feel in your waking life, then you will be able to interpret your dreams better.

For example, does a certain person make you feel unhappy? If they show up in your dream while you are at work, then that could mean that your work - or an aspect of it - is making you unhappy.

Or, are you terrified of heights? If you are in a tall building or high up in any way during your dream, then fear might be a big part of what's happening.

The catch is that you might bring in symbols that are completely unrelated to reality. But, you bring them in because your subconscious sees them as a big hint that you might pick up.

For instance, you may dream you are working at your current job and your fifth-grade teacher shows up at your new boss who wants you to take on a new role.

Your fifth-grade teacher has no business at your current job, but if she represents kindness, encouragement, and patience to you, then she is a symbol of those things.

  • She could represent the kindness, encouragement, and patience you wish your boss had.
  • She could also represent the kindness, encouragement, and patience you need to have for yourself as you work on moving yourself up the ladder.
  • Or, if you've been wanting to leave your job, she could represent the encouragement you need to take action on finding something different.

You can see how there are lots of different interpretations just from one symbol being in your dream, which is why someone else can't interpret your dreams for you. Only you can piece together the varying details in the dream and come up with an interpretation.

Note: If you don't have a lot of details in your dream, and you find a symbol could have many different meanings, I recommend listening to your intuition and going with what it tells you. Your intuition knows. It's a part of your deeper self and by listening to it, you will remove the 'what ifs' and other questions and just settle on an interpretation that fits.

Hugh Lynn Cayce, Edgar Cayce's son, is quoted as saying, The best interpretation of a dream is one you apply.

— Henry Reed

Tip 3: Look For The Big Meaning Behind Your Dreams

Sometimes you may dream about being at work and feeling anxious, but the issue causing the dream may have nothing to do with work. The anxiety may have to do with an upcoming doctor's appointment or get together with someone.

Therefore, if you can't find a connection between everything in your dream, go for the overall feeling to determine the meaning.

For example, let's say that you dreamt you were at a monster truck rally with your friends and some people you've never met before. In the dream, you were eating ice cream and having fun. Then you were in a truck driving. Then you were waiting for your friends to leave the rally. But, in the dream, you kept finding yourself naked for no reason and felt completely embarrassed by it.

Being naked would likely be the overall tone to that dream. Other things were changing, but you consistently found yourself naked for no reason.

To me, being naked would mean exposing myself in a way that I don't want to do. I would look at my life and see where I am exposing myself too much and whether or not it is a good or bad thing for me. And it might not be a bad thing! I might just be stepping outside of my comfort zone and my dream is a reflection of that.

Tip 4: Don't Assume Your Dreams Are Prophetic

I get many questions from people who want their dreams to be prophetic. In their dreams, they do things like:

  • Win the lottery
  • Win over their crush
  • Get married
  • Find a new job easily
  • Win back their ex

Assuming that your dream is telling you the future could impact your future negatively.

For instance, a lot of people find themselves dreaming about a partner cheating and, believing that their dream is prophetic, they then becoming paranoid that their partner is going to cheat.

Doing that is a great way to ruin a relationship! If you believe your dream was telling the future, then you are going to get jealous and cause problems in your relationship. Eventually, you might just make your dream come true by pushing your partner away!

So How Can You Tell If Your Dreams Are Prophetic?

I think the only way to tell how you dream prophetically is to record your dreams and gain some hindsight on your prophetic dreams.

For instance, I dreamt about my dog hurting her back. In the dream, there were no jumps from one place to another or random appearances from people I didn't know. The whole dream was focused on my dog and helping her. And the dream was extremely intense with focused emotion - no scattered thoughts or jumping around from emotion to emotion.

That dream turned out to be prophetic as a month later her back gave out one day for no visible reason.

I've had other dreams that were very focused on one realistic thing and had a lot of emotion and they also turned out to be prophetic.

So, for me, dreams that are focused on a lot of emotion have the potential to be prophetic. I make sure to take any precautions needed or make any reasonable adjustments to my life in those cases. But, I don't go overboard. And I ask myself how realistic the dream was.

For instance, if I dreamt about zombies taking over, and I felt a lot of intense emotion during the dream, I don't wake up worried about a zombie attack.

Not saying that a zombie attack couldn't happen, but I would say the chances of it are pretty slim.

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    • Relationshipc profile imageAUTHOR

      Kari 

      11 months ago from Alberta, Canada

      @Shyamini - If you are not wanting to talk to him in your waking life because he is not someone you trust, then your dream is just a reflection of how you feel. After all, why would you want to sleep with someone you can't trust? Intimacy requires trust.

    • profile image

      Shyamini 

      11 months ago

      Hey,

      I had a dream this morning between 3-7 am. I dreamt of being with the man I love and not wanting to sleep with him.

      Lately I have limited talking to him as he lies a lot to me. He always talks, wants to know abt my well-being but I do not respond.

      Am I drifting apart? Is that what my dream means?

    • Relationshipc profile imageAUTHOR

      Kari 

      18 months ago from Alberta, Canada

      @Flourish - That's a good point. Sometimes people can see things that you can't, especially when you are close to them and they know you and your life somewhat.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 

      18 months ago from USA

      I'm a psychologist and try to process my own dreams. I've found that also people I am close to have been helped by talking out their dreams, the symbols in them, and their feelings connected to the dreams. Sometimes they aren't seeing something that is so obvious but can discover it that way.

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