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Dream Interpretation Tips
Dream interpretation is the process of assigning meanings to dreams. Various systems of dream interpretation have assigned meanings in terms of future events (oneiromancy), in terms of chance events during the night, and in terms of unconscious mental activity to name a few.
Dream interpretation was taken up as part of psychoanalysis at the end of the 19th Century; the manifest content of a dream (what is perceived in the dream) is analyzed to reveal the latent content of a dream (the underlying thoughts of the dream why it was dreamt).
There has been much scientific research on dreams, and modern theories attempt to explain as many facts found in scientific research as possible. These include:
- The cause and purpose of dreams
- The content of dreams
- The varying frequencies of dreams (more before birth, fewer towards death; increased in premature births, etc.)
- The relationship between dreams and depression
- The possible evolutionary role of dreaming
Last Updated - 25th January 2006
Types of Dream
- Daydream - Studies show that we all have the tendency to daydream an average of 70-120 minutes a day. Day dreaming is classified as a level of consciousness between sleep and wakefulness. It occurs during our waking hours when we let our imagination carry us away. As our minds begin to wander and our level of awareness decreases, we lose ourselves in our imagined scenario and fantasy.
- Lucid Dream - Lucid dreams occurs when you realize you are dreaming in the middle of your dream. "Wait a second. This is only a dream!" Most dreamers wake themselves up once they realize that they are only dreaming. Other dreamers have cultivated the skill to remain in the lucid state of dreaming. They become an active participant in their dream, make decisions in their dreams and influence the dream's outcome without awakening.
- Nightmare - A nightmare is a disturbing dream that causes the dreamer to wake up feeling anxious and frightened. Nightmares may be a response to real life trauma and situations. These type of nightmares fall under a special category called Post-traumatic stress nightmare (PSN). Nightmares may also occur because we have ignored or refused to accept a particular life situation. Research shows that most people who have regular nightmares have had a family history of psychiatric problems, bad drug experiences, people who have contemplated suicide, and/or rocky relationships. Nightmares are an indication of a fear that needs to be acknowledged and confronted. It is a way for our subconscious to make up take notice. "Pay attention!"
- Recurring Dreams - Recurring dreams repeat themselves with little variation in story or theme. These dreams may be positive, but most often they are nightmares. Dreams may recur because a conflict depicted in the dream remains unresolved and ignored. Once you have found a resolution to the problem, your recurring dreams may cease.
- Healing Dreams - Healing dreams serve as messages for the dreamer in regards to their health. Dreams of this nature may be telling the dreamer that he/she needs to go to the dentist or doctor.
- Prophetic Dreams - Prophetic dreams, also referred to as precognitive dreams, are dreams that seemingly foretell the future. One rational theory to explain this phenomenon is that our dreaming mind is able to piece together bits of information and observation that we normally overlook or that we do not seriously consider. In other words, our unconscious mind knows what is coming before we consciously piece together the same information.
- Epic Dreams - Epic dreams are so huge, so compelling, and so vivid that you cannot ignore them. The details of such dreams remain with you for years, as if your dreamt it last night. These dreams possess much beauty and contain many archetypal symbology.
Tips to Remember Your Dream
Remembering your dreams will require some effort on your part. But what your dreams can offer and tell you about yourself will be well worth it. Here are some tips in helping your dream recall:
- Before going to bed, keep a clear mind. Tell yourself that "I will remember my dream when I wake up". This is actually a proven and effective way to help dream recall. Having too many thoughts on your mind can distract you from remembering your dream in the morning.
- Have a regular bedtime and wake up time. Make this your routine. Going to bed and waking up at a regular time every day aids in dream recollection.
- Avoid alcohol consumption and taking medication before going to bed. These things may hinder you from remembering your dream. Eating fatty foods too close to bedtime can also divert bodily resources away from the brain. and hider dream recollection.
- Keep a pencil/notebook or tape recorder next to your bed so that it will be within reach as soon as you wake up. You want to make recording your dreams as easy a task as possible. Having a small lamp by your bedside is also a good idea should you wake up in the middle of the night and want to record your dream immediately.
- Upon waking from a dream, lie in bed for awhile keeping your eyes closed. Wake up slowly and stay relaxed. Hold on to the feelings you have and let your mind wander to the images of what you have just dreamt. Were you frustrated, terrified, or happy?
- Record your dream immediately. Make it a habit that this is the first thing you do. Talking about your dreams to friends or participating in forums and chats also help you remember
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