Why is Sleep So Important to Our Overall Health?
Credit: Infographic Source.
It All Starts with the Mission, Itself…..
What Does My Dream Mean?
I had a dream last night about a crazy squirrel. It was running around me in my dream, gathering up cobs of corn and peanuts that were stashed everywhere in my home. It even went upstairs – with me chasing him. Then he went into a store that was suddenly in my house and started eating everything he could find. I was laughing in my dream but also felt frustrated because I wanted to help him. Somehow I knew that him getting as much food as possible meant whether he would live or not and I felt helpless. He started eating cereal out of boxes, jumped on a salad bar and ate everything there and just kept running from one thing to the next. Since I woke up, I have wondered what this dream means.
Why don’t I ever have dreams like that?? I LOVE squirrels! This is one of those dreams where you have to look a little deeper than the surface to find the true meaning. The meaning of the dream, in this case, isn’t as much about the squirrel (though I’m sure he was a hoot) as it is about what the dream symbol was doing – he was frantically grabbing food as fast and hard as he could.
He, himself, didn’t convey to you (through words) that this food mission was life or death – but you KNEW that it was. Since you are, in fact, the author of the dream, you certainly know how important his mission was!
The fact that you mention the words “whether he would live or not,” we know that the dream has a deeper meaning than just an entertaining squirrel. If you had said you laughed at the squirrel and hadn’t mentioned feeling helpless or frustrated, I’d have thought it was just one of those crazy dreams that really don’t have as much MEANING as they have ENTERTAINMENT VALUE. However, your emotions and his eagerness let us know that there is a meaning within the dream.
Many times in dreams, another person (or, yes, a squirrel!) will “act out” our hidden emotions, fears, anxieties, and agendas. If WE, ourselves, did the “acting out,” we wouldn’t be able to be a spectator to the action.
In this case, the squirrel was on a definite mission – it was essential that he complete his mission or he’d suffer consequences. I think this dream means that there is something in your life you feel pretty anxious about. Furthermore, I think it’s something you are trying to “round up, collect, or get enough of.” More likely than not, this would be either money or possibly even groceries – how perfect would the dream symbolism be for that?
In fact, if you’re in an area that has been hit by snow or an ice storm, maybe you’ve been worried about storing enough food in the house.
Thanks for sharing your dream – it’s a perfect example of how fascinating and symbolic dreams can be… even if they’re a little nutty. Sorry.
I WILL get caught up, however.. and it starts today!
Have you ever had a dream about a church? Whether it’s your own church, a church you attended as a child, or simply a church you’ve seen – church dreams have a specific interpretation all of their own.
It’s first important to think about things we associate with churches:
A church is a symbol of God and is, therefore, one of the most holy and sacred symbols we have. Other religious symbols include…
- the Cross
- the Holy Bible
- John 3:16
- Preachers, Priests, Nuns…
While each of these religious symbols (in life and in dreams) can point to God, Jesus, our faith, hope, beliefs, eternity, Spirituality, and Christianity – a church takes it one step further.
Dreaming of a church has more to do with how we FEEL than anything else. Churches conjure up feelings of comfort, peace, contentment, and most of all SAFETY.
To dream of a church indicates either a feeling of safety and peace or a longing for safety and peace. To differentiate between the two in your own personal dream interpretation, you have to look at the rest of the dream
Was the dream peaceful and, upon wakening, did you feel peaceful, safe, and content? Most of the time, this indicates that you feel safe in your day to day life.
If the dream was chaotic, troublesome, and confrontational, and you awoke with negative feelings – it indicates that you are searching for peace and safety.
As with all dreams, nothing is set in stone and other dream symbols could affect your own personal interpretation. This is just a general interpretation for church dreams and the symbolism for churches in dreams.
As always, sweet dreams!
It All Depends on How You Feel About Saying Goodbye
I hear from a lot of dreamers who are haunted by dreams during breakups – whether they’re broken engagements, divorces, or broken relationships in general.
Some dreamers have nightmares during this period. They’ll dream their “ex” is trying to harm them or that they are in a situation and the “ex” refuses to help them.
When the dream revolves around an ex not coming to the dreamer’s rescue – it speaks of a feeling that the ex was “never there for them… never around when they were needed most.”
Dreams of an ex trying to harm the dreamer in any way doesn’t have to indicate that there was EVER any physical or even emotional abuse. In fact, it’s much more a sign of pain from the separation. Our dreaming mind puts physical pain and emotional pain AND physical fear and emotional fear on the same level – it really isn’t able to distinguish between physical and emotional.
All it knows is that there is pain, fear, and great emotions going on at this time. It responds to this with disturbing dreams that are apt to continue for up to a couple of weeks. The sooner the dreamer is able to move on with their life… finding other interests to engage their mind and attention… the sooner the subconscious mind will say, “Oh, okay, we’re good.” and move on to happier, more upbeat dreams.
I recently read about a dream from someone who left a comment on Dream Prophesy. He and a girl he very much liked had recently broken up and his dreams involved a “backyard” and a “flood.” As someone who LOVES dreams and LOVES the way the subconscious mind works.. I loved reading this. While my heart breaks for two people who may not be able to be together (more about that in a minute!), I think it’s fascinating that the subconscious mind expressed itself in this manner.
- The backyard is symbolic of “looking back” or even “going back.” This could be the dreamer wanting to “go back” and give it another chance or it could be the dreamer not wanting to “go back and make, or repeat, a mistake.”
- The flood is beautifully symbolic of a flood or rush of emotions. Flood and/or rain dreams are common whenever a loss is involved – loss of a loved one through death or through a broken relationship. The flood (or rain) represents emotions and, sometimes, even tears. The amazing thing is these emotions can range from love to hate and from fear to relief. Someone who had been in a terribly stressful and unhappy relationship may have as many “floods of emotions” as someone who’d been in a relatively peaceful and happy relationship. However, these emotions may be those of great relief and even freedom as opposed to sadness and regret.
One Last Word
Because I do hear from so many people who are dealing with breakups – and who are so haunted by these breakups that their dreams are even affected – I want to say one last thing. When I hear from someone who has gone through a divorce or a breakup that was a lousy relationship, I can’t help thinking, “Good – now go and find someone you can be happy with. Relationships aren’t supposed to be filled with so much unhappiness, distrust, and control issues. They should be fun and happy MOST of the time, not just every now and then!”
The breakups and divorces that stick with me are the ones where…
- … the couple was happy and got along beautifully.
- …. the two individuals actually loved one another.
- …. there was respect involved – a two way street.
- …. but, for whatever reasons, one or both of them feel “it won’t work” or that there’ll be trouble down the road – so they end it.
What the what?!?! If it’s working NOW, what leads you to think it won’t work THEN? If you have differences of opinion on a lot of issues NOW, don’t base that on what may or may not happen THEN. People change and, over the course of a few years, sometimes they change so much in their outlook on life they can’t even believe it!
These days it is extremely, extremely hard to find someone. That’s why there are SO many online dating sites, match up programs, etc. Problem is, some of these have the potential to be unreliable at best and dangerous at worst. It’s just incredibly difficult to find someone. Period.
If you have been blessed enough to find someone you love and who loves you, letting them go may be one of the worst mistakes you ever make. One of my favorite sayings is this, “Never give up on something you can’t go a day without thinking about.”
If love and respect are there, then you need to make a couple motto that goes something like this, “We will make this work.” Keep lines of communication open, respect one another’s opinions and even encourage freedom of thought.
Relationships are, basically, family we choose for ourselves. We’re born to parents who aren’t our choosing. Some of us have siblings, cousins, aunts, uncles, and grandparents who aren’t our choosing.
Think about it: We never throw a brother or sister aside simply because we don’t see eye to eye on everything. As parents, we don’t put one of our children up for adoption because they have different political thoughts than we do.
In my own family, I’m not sure any two of us agree 100% on every single political or current news topic. We may see a lot of the major issues similarly, but everything… not a chance. We’re all individuals and individuals were built to think for themselves.
However, we love one another with all our heart and we respect one another and applaud freedom of thought. That’s what families do. They may disagree, they may even argue, heck… sometimes they may even stomp around and yell!
But, in the end, when all’s said and done – they’re family and quitting is NOT an option.
If the love is there, everything else will follow.
Can You “Program” Your Own Dreams?
A couple of frequently asked questions about dreams actually have a lot in common:
- Is there any way to re-enter a dream after waking from one?
- Can you “Invite” a dream back into your dream world. For example, once you have dreamed about a particular thing, can you make yourself dream about it again?
Whenever I’m asked this one, my response is never one the dreamer wants to hear. It’s been my experience that you cannot (once awake) quickly return to the dream you have just left. If this has happened with anyone, I’d have to say that the dreamer never fully awoke.
The second frequently asked question also receives the same negative-type answer (sorry about that!): While it’s not “impossible” (since few things are ever 100% impossible), it’s highly unlikely that you can “make” your brain repeat a dream or even return to the scene of the dream, so to speak.
There are, in all fairness, some dreamologists who believe that a dreamer can “program” their mind to dream about a certain subject. They say that frequently thinking about this subject – especially as you are falling asleep – can cause the brain to enter into this type of dream. However, even if the general subject of the dream is created, there are no sure bets that things will play out as you thought they would.
While it isn’t a sure thing, all I can say is this: What would it hurt to try?! I’m not convinced that you can direct your dreams from “this” side, but I’d have to agree that focusing on the desired outcome is the way to go about it.
However, I think the better question would be, “Why are you wanting to return to this dream in the first place?” If the dream scenario is revisiting loved ones who have passed (a frequent dream people don’t want to leave), realize that you obviously miss them even more than you realized. Get out old photographs and think and talk about these loved ones. Mention them more throughout the day, keeping their memory alive.
Our dreams about loved ones are extra sweet because we feel as though we have “visited” with them. Simply “visit” with them throughout the day with treasured memories.
If you feel your dream is helping you “work something out” in your mind, you can get to the answer through another door – daydreams. Daydreaming (at appropriate times, of course) can help your mind sort through things that your conscious mind often gets in the way of.
Daydreams are also a great way to deal with a dream we wake from “sooner” than we’d like. Simply close your eyes and “daydream” the rest of the story. You’re able to call the shots more with this approach anyway!
If you’re interested in dreams, the following bestseller may be of interest…
Dreams is filled with information gathered through research and from dream experts to provide the reader with a concise resource about dreams and dream interpretation.
Book Synopsis: Whether you’re a beginner trying to understand the dream world or an expert who already has ample knowledge, this book serves as another resource that will show you how wondrous and fascinating the dream world is. Do you want to know what your dreams mean? Are you curious why recurring dreams happen? Have you dreamt in color? If you answer yes to any of these questions, then this is the book for you.
Not only will you learn the answer to these questions, but to these questions as well: How are dreams affected by our daily lives? Do men and women dream differently? Do animals dream as well? Why do I remember only bad dreams and never good ones? What does it mean to dream about dreaming? Will I really die if I hit the ground during a falling dream?
You’ll also learn:
- The history of dreams and dream interpretation
- How and why we dream
- The physical and psychological side of dreaming
- Answer the basic questions about dreams and dream interpretation
- The basics of dream analysis and interpretation
- The importance of remembering dreams
The book covers the different types of dreams (• The Daydream • The Lucid Dream • The Nightmare • The Recurring Dream • The Healing Dream • The Prophetic Dream • The Epic Dream) in great detail. You will also learn to understand dream imagery, dreaming in color and dreams about numbers. You will also learn about the four sleep cycle stages including the Rem Cycle.
In Dreams, learn about interpretations of common dreams and the frequently asked questions about dreams and dream interpretation.
You will find the meaning of these dreams:
- What dreams about eyes mean
- What Dreams about Houses Mean (including these rooms)
- Dreams about Arms
- hat Dreams about the Back Mean
- Dreams of Being Naked
- Dreams of Being Chased
See Dreams for more information.
How Anger Dreams Help Us Release Tension and Hostility
Have you ever had a dream that just left you feeling angry when you woke up?! Maybe you felt angry in the dream – or maybe something happened in the dream that left you feeling mad when you stepped out of the dream.
Anger dreams are actually pretty therapeutic. They allow the dreamer to…
- Release hostility they fell unable to express in their waking world.
- Release tension and even anxiety.
As I often point out in Dream Interpretations, one of the most beautiful things about dreams is the fact that they allow our brains to “wrap” themselves around ideas that may elude them when we’re completely conscious.
When we’re awake, a lot of things are going on – not just around us, but in our minds as well. There are situations (and often individuals) that we have trouble coping with when we’re in the middle of so much commotion.
However, when our subconscious mind takes over when we’re sleeping, it can try to sort out and process information.
The same holds true for EMOTIONS. When we’re fully awake, we may feel a great number of emotions – and often all at once. It’s hard, sometimes, to figure out which emotions are the “truest.” When we enter our dream world, our subconscious minds gets to work.
Our emotions (as well as “information”) play out in our dreams as mini movies as our brain sorts through everything.
Have you ever stopped to think about just how fascinating this all is?!!?
If there are people, events, or situations that leave us frustrated – and yet we feel completely helpless about the feeling – we’ll often have “anger dreams.” In our daily life, lashing out at a co-worker or confronting someone in our family might not be the wisest or coolest thing to do. Telling them that the way they chew with their mouth open could hurt their feelings after all!
But, seriously, how uncouth is that?
If we’re unable to react in our waking world, it’s as though at night the brain says… “Okay, NOW I’ll blow off some steam!”
Ironically, more times than not – after the initial anger – we wake up and realize that what we thought was a huge deal… one worthy of so much hostility!… isn’t really that big of a deal. We’re able to put things into perspective and even feel thankful that we didn’t lash out or overreact in the “real world.”
That drama is better off in dreams.
The Meaning Can Actually Go One of Several Ways….
Dreaming of a cemetery or graveyard (or of anything pertaining to a cemetery such as headstones or graves) can have several meanings.
For some people, cemetery dreams indicate that they either have (or have recently had) a fear of illness or a sense of impending doom – either relating to themselves or someone they love. If serious illness or any form of catastrophe has been kicking around your mind, the subconscious brain may go all in and manifest these thoughts in a cemetery-themed dream.
I guess you could say these types of dreams could be a reminder to pay careful attention to what you think about during the day!
Cemetery dreams can also symbolize the words death, dead, or dying in different… decidedly less fatal… ways. The following thoughts and comments can put the words death, dead, and dying in the subconscious mind:
- a”dying” relationship
- a “dead end” job
- being “dead in the water“
- saying “you’re killing me“
- anything that may have made you say or think, “this is going to be the death of me!“
- a pretty dramatic individual may even say something inside of them is dying.
It only takes a small thought or a single, mindless comment to produce a dream. The subconscious mind hangs on tightly to things it finds particularly interesting, then produces, casts, and directs mini-movies called dreams. More often than not, the “set location” for these mini movies have as much to do with the dream’s interpretation as the action, itself.
Some older dream dictionaries believed that cemetery dreams indicated the dreamer’s need for physical, emotional, or spiritual rest. In the past (as in long, long, long ago) cemeteries were viewed differently than they are today. We don’t associate peace, rest, and quietness with cemeteries today as much as they did in the past. Part of the reason may be the language used THEN compared to the language used NOW. A very common phrase regarding cemeteries in the past was “a final resting place.”
People also used to refer to death more as “at rest” or “at peace.” Therefore, cemeteries and graves were viewed as places of rest and peace. While this may still be true in some parts of the world – it isn’t as prevalent as it once was.
Having said all of that… if you dream of cemeteries or graves and you happen to view death as a “final rest,” you could possibly interpret your dream as your brain telling you that you need a rest.
As with most dreams, your own individual interpretation may be different from the next person’s. You have to ask yourself:
- What are my feelings about cemeteries?
- How did I feel immediately after awaking from this dream?
Your own thoughts and emotions will help direct you to your own personal analysis.
It’s worth noting, too, that if you recently lost a loved one or even heard of someone dying you hardly even knew – your mind could “process” this information by producing a graveyard or cemetery in your dream.
Dreamer Has a Rare Dream About Daydreaming
Okay, here’s a weird dream I hope you can interpret for me. I just know there is some important meaning behind it but I can’t figure it out. I dreamed that I was with my mom (who died suddenly 3 years ago). I miss her very much and dream about her a lot. In the dream we were in a plane. I am scared of planes and heights more than anything, so being in the plane made me very uneasy. As the plane began to start going down – crashing – my dream suddenly switched to me on the ground – daydreaming about the whole plane situation. I’ve never done that in my dreams before – “daydreaming” or imagining something. That would seem almost impossible, but it’s exactly what happened. Then, in the dream, I began “playing out” scenarios – like wondering what different people would say if they found out our plane had crashed, who would cry, who would miss me, etc. I even imagined that all my family would find it very ironic that I died doing something I feared so much. What does this weird dream mean? It has shaken me and unsettled me a great deal. Thank you. – T.B.
This type of dream is – in my experience – VERY rare, indeed. I’ve personally had kind of similar dreams a few times in my life and each time – like you – I wondered, “How is that even possible?!”
The mind is so incredibly complex that almost anything IS possible. The subconscious mind doesn’t have any “rules” it has to live by, so pretty much anything goes.
When reading over this particular dream, one thing stood out – this is what I call a “troubled” dream. The dream, itself, isn’t troubled (of course), but the dreamer is… or at least has been very recently.
The fact that your mother – who you lost a few years ago – was with you in the dream coupled with the fact that one of your greatest fears – flying – was taking place points to a fear surrounding illness, injury, or even death. You could have been EXTRA worried about a loved one recently or even fearful of your own well-being or health.
I believe this dream indicates that your fears are “in your mind” and that, deep down, you realize this.
This sort of insight can sometimes create complex dreams as your mind tries to sort everything out.
- You’re fearful for someone (or for yourself)
- You realize the fear is in your mind
Is it any wonder the subconscious mind has trouble making sense of it?!
We’ve all been there, though. We worry ourselves sick about something – the whole time knowing that we’re creating the drama.
Just more examples of just how COMPLEX the mind is.
I hope you’ll use your dream to help you let go of excessive worrying and release fear that you create in your own mind. Thanks for sharing your dream with us – what you think of as “weird,” the rest of us think of as “fascinating!”
Ask Yourself What the Number Represents to You
If you remember a particular number from a dream, rest assured that the number (itself) is important. In fact, it very well may be the most important thing about the dream. Think about it – each dream involves some type of number. For example, you may dream about 4 cats, 2 people, 1 cake, etc. But we don’t always place importance on the numbers, themselves.
Why? Most of the time, the number simply isn’t important to the dream’s meaning.
However, if you have a particular dream and, when retelling or reliving the details, you make a point of naming a certain number (such as a number of objects, a “head count,” a particular number of days….) – THEN the number is of importance.
In fact, it may be the most important thing about the dream.
A few examples:
- If you dream about the number 2, odds are the number has to do with a romantic relationship – one you either value, wish you had, are concerned about. or miss.
- If you dream about a particular number, it could stand for the number of children (or pets) you have.
- A number could also be the total of people in your immediate family – usually in your household.
- If you have a spouse and, say, 3 children, the number 4 could simply represent the total of people you care extra deeply about and worry the most about.
- The number 1 can have several meanings – it could mean everything from loneliness to a feeling of supreme confidence and cockiness! Only the dreamer can say for certain.
When you remember a particular number from your dream (that is to say the number “stands out” for whatever reason), the first thing you should do is ask yourself what the number REPRESENTS to you. Usually, the first thing that comes to mind is what the number truly represents to you.
After you have your source, look at the type of dream you had. Was it carefree, happy, peaceful, and fun or was it scary, chaotic, and unsettling?
Let’s say you realize that the number 3 represents the number of children you have. If your dream was chaotic and possibly even scary – this would indicate that you are (in some area) worried or concerned about these children. Possibly you had recently been thinking about the cost of college or the crime rate.
It could be that you were worried about them physically, spiritually, or emotionally. You could, also – of course – been worried about something happening to you…. wondering how they’d get along without you.
Finally, you could have been wondering if you you are doing all you could for them (after all, parents never think they’re actually doing enough!).
If the dream was unsettling, then it represents something unsettling in your thoughts during the hours leading up to the dream – not your overall thoughts. It could have simply been one fleeting thought you had during the day that simply showed up in the dream.
If the dream was carefree and fun, it was simply your subconscious mind celebrating a great day or “acting out” pleasant thoughts.
On my self help blog, I always talk about the importance of having a positive attitude. I frequently write about how vital it is to welcome and entertain only positive thoughts (as much as possible, that is). Your dreams are simply another reason why keeping an upbeat attitude is important. If your mind is troubled during the day, more times than not, your dreams will be troubled at night.
Try to remember that when your alone with your thoughts – they’ll probably revisit you in one way or another.
For more information about what numbers mean in dreams, including interpretations for specific numbers, please see Numbers in Dreams.