Plus: Why Recurring Dreams Deserve Extra Attention
What does it mean to dream about colliding with people or things? I had my first dream like this about 3 weeks ago. I was driving a car on a street and suddenly a train (on the road for some reason) came right at me. I woke up right before it hit me. The next collision dream was about being in a grocery store when a store worker collided her huge cart with my grocery cart. The most recent one got my attention the most though. I was walking in a field when I suddenly realized that I was walking on an old railroad track. Just as my mind registered what it was, I heard a loud train whistle and looked up to see one coming right at me. My feet couldn’t run sideways – they had to stay on the old train track. I couldn’t even turn around to go the other direction. I had to run backwards trying to get away from this big train that was speeding at me. I woke up and sat straight up, breathing deep like I’d been running. It has left me shaken for days.
First of all, let’s look at what collision dreams mean. Ancient dream guides say that dreams like the ones named here are omens to slow down. The thought is that if your mind is “set” to this type of panic mode, it’s because it is over-stimulated and in need of a rest.
Generally speaking, I read old dream guides with a measure of skepticism – after all, most of them talk about “foretelling” and “omens,” as though dreams are psychic and we don’t have a lot of say in the matter. I’m certainly not on board with that line of thinking, so I never put FULL trust in ancient dream guides. However, when it comes to dreams such as this – I think they’re right on the money.
A stressed brain will “conjure” up far more stressful dreams than a well-rested, peaceful brain. The same can be said for a dreamer’s brain when the dreamer is sick, injured, or under any sort of grief or prolonged sadness.
Dreams of colliding with other people or objects generally mean the dreamer is “on guard” about something in his/her life. There is something in particular that they’re “watching out for.”
I’ve heard of people who have been very unlucky in love having these types of dreams when starting a new relationship. Bad things have happened in the past and, in an effort to protect themselves, they now “watch” for warning signs.
It doesn’t just have to romantic relationships, of course – it can be jobs, friendships, finances, health, etc.
Only the dreamer can say for certain, but more times than not, a collision dream indicates that the dreamer is anticipating something coming at them that they want to “brace” against.
The fact that this is a recurring dream, in my opinion, makes it even more important. When a dream’s “prophecy” is something the dreamer’s brain deems extremely important, it will put the message in reruns in an effort to get its point across. Very often, simply consciously confronting the dream’s meaning will be all it takes to end the recurring dreams.
It’s as though the brain realizes that it got its message across, so it relaxes. I certainly hope that’s the case because a relaxed brain’s dreams are FAR less disturbing!
When Our Subconscious Mind Becomes a Nag
Recurring Dreams are a problem for a lot of people. The biggest problem with dreams that repeat themselves is the fact that they’re almost always nightmares, unsettling dreams, or – in the very least – frustrating dreams.
Most people think that recurring dreams are always more important than other dreams. In fact, most people think of recurring dreams as “emergencies” and that their interpretation is a life or death issue.
While some recurring dreams recur because the issue is a very important one, some recur for a couple of other, harmless reasons:
- Sometimes recurring dreams keep happening simply because we keep thinking about them! We talk to other people about our recurring dreams, we think about them ourselves throughout the day… pretty much we invite them to keep coming back by giving them so much press and fanfare.
- Sometimes a recurring dream is just a nag. The dream may not even necessarily symbolize a MAJOR issue – sometimes it’s actually a MINOR issue. The problem is that it’s a MINOR issue that isn’t resolved yet. Think of it as your brain saying, “I’m going to nag you about this until you fix it.”
Here’s an example of a dream being a nag: Jamie kept dreaming about his deceased brother in law. Each dream found the brother in law needing help that Jamie was unable to give. Because the two were very close (“absolutely best friends”) these dreams were very sad and gut-wrenching. After reflecting on certain things (their relationship, the circumstances surrounding his death, and Jamie‘s grief), the recurring dreams meaning came out: Jamie felt incredibly bad about the fact that his brother in law didn’t have a “really nice” headstone on his grave. While this may seem like a small issue, it was enough of one to sort of haunt his dreams.
His mind was nagging him to do something about it. When he’d think about it during the day, he’d simply think about how he wished he could afford a nice headstone. He’d also push thoughts about his brother in law out of his mind because they made him sad. However, in his dreams, his mind wanted him to know that the feelings weren’t going anywhere!
His mind nagged him until he faced the problem and actively began saving money to buy a lasting tribute to someone who meant so much to him.
He didn’t have to wait until the headstone was actually bought for the recurring dreams to end. They stopped as soon as he made the decision to save money until the very important purchase was made.
Nagging recurring dreams can’t be stopped simply by realizing what your mind is trying to tell you. Your mind has to know you mean business!
If your mind is trying to convey a message to you, do everything in your power to get to the root of the problem.
A great exercise for analyzing and even interpreting a recurring dream is to grab a pen (or pencil) and paper. Think about the dream and write down any details about the dream that come to mind. As you’re writing the details, ask yourself, “What could THIS symbolize” or “What could THAT mean?” Very often, the dream’s meaning will be right in front of you.
If you’ve determined that there isn’t a core problem or issue, ask yourself if you’re paying too much attention to the dreams. If that’s the case, do all you can to put them out of your mind. Right before falling asleep, particularly, think about something as far removed from the recurring dream’s subject as possible.
Below are a few ideas that some people use to “clear” their mind before falling asleep:
- think about fun times you’ve had with family members – times when you didn’t have a care in the world
- watch a sitcom that’s 100 percent fun and care free (I Love Lucy, cartoons, Andy Griffith…)
- read something “light,” such as a romance novel, comic book, magazine…
- listen to music
- read poetry
- write poetry
- write in your journal – focusing on the things that went right during the day
Bottom line – once you’ve determined the dream’s meaning, put it entirely out of your mind!
Never a Fun Combination!
I was recently asked about “Lost Key” dreams – dreams that are obviously frustrating at best! The frustration is multiplied when the dreams are recurring, like this particular dreamer’s were. When a dream puts itself in reruns, it always leaves the dreamer perplexed.
Why is my mind doing this?!
The wonderful thing about “lost key” dreams is the fact that they’re usually pretty easy to interpret and analyze. Simply put… something’s missing! When we dream that we can’t find an object (or person, place…), the symbolism is generally of something we’re “looking” for in our day to day lives. This could refer to any number of things, such as:
- peace of mind
- an answer to a particular problem
- better health
- weight loss
- job or career
- car, house, or furniture
- better relationship(s)
- school or college
- how to find enough time for everything you need to do
It could be absolutely anything that you’re searching for on somewhat of a daily basis.
When you have recurring dreams, you can rest assured that your subconscious mind is trying to tell you something. More importantly, it’s actually trying to “work something” out in the dream(s).
Our minds are amazing and complex things. The mind knows that when you’re asleep, all distractions are gone. The mind sees this scenario as the perfect time to “work out” issues or even hammer things out in an attempt to find a solution or a “best possible answer.”
If you’re experiencing recurring dreams (whether they’re about lost keys or something else), your mind is working hard to come up with an answer that’s eluding it. It may or may not mean that the problem is huge. In fact, if the problem WERE really big, it’d be pretty obvious to you when you were thinking about the dream.
Here’s an exercise that works for analyzing key dreams:
- Write down the first 3 things that come to mind after reading this question: “”What am I looking for that seems to be eluding me lately?” You may very well answer only one thing – if so, you certainly know your answer!
- If you do come up with 3 different answers and each seem to “weigh” the same in your mind, you’ll discover that you’re looking for more than you realized. If this is the case, it’d certainly explain why this dream is recurring. You’re looking for more than one answer.
- When coming up with the 3 (and remember there may only be 1 or 2), DON’T force it. If you have to pause and think, the answer isn’t that important to your subconscious mind. The answer(s) that really matter will come to you almost immediately.
More about Recurring Dreams in the next post.