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!
Why Does Our Mind Choose the People it Chooses?!
A question I’m asked a lot has to do with the people who show up in our dreams. Questions like Why Do We Sometimes Dream About People We Haven’t Thought of In Years? and Why did (a particular actor/actress) appear in my dream are a couple of examples.
While there are instances where the individual or individuals are a part of the dream interpretation or meaning, itself, most of the time, the individual is used simply because there was a role to be filled in the brain’s “movie” and it’s a one organ casting department. More times than not, the brain will “cast” someone who’s name it heard or who’s face it saw during the pat 48 hours.
A perfect example actually happened to me a few nights ago. While my husband and I were watching a great college basketball game on television, the announcers brought up a recent Luke Bryan concert. One announcer said that his favorite Country artist was Toby Keith. In a dream, that night, none other than Toby Keith was the barista in a coffee shop my husband and I went to. In all honesty, I’m not that familiar with Luke Bryan and I’m only about 45 % sure I could pick him out in a lineup.
On the other hand, Toby Keith is one of my favorite artists ever – Country or otherwise.
The funny thing is, I had not thought of Toby Keith for weeks when the announcer brought up his name. What’s more, I was so invested in the ballgame, I only barely “registered” what he’d said. In fact, I didn’t think about it the rest of the night. However, my brain had taken note of the name and had it on “standby” when it came time to cast the barista!
Because I had not given this particular singer any thought in weeks and because the mention of his name barely even registered on my radar, I know that he had nothing to do with the interpretation of the dream. He was simply a “handy” name (with a face my brain would recognize) when a barista was needed.
Sometimes your brain will “pull” someone from the “casting pool” that you saw (and possibly barely recognized) on a magazine cover, in a commercial, online, or in a movie. Other times, like Toby, it’ll simply be the mention of a name that’ll earn them a spot in your dream. Zero meaning, zero significance.
It may seem strange for someone who studies dreams to admit this, but sometimes even our dreams hold no real meaning. I refer to these as “throwaway” dreams. They’re the type of dreams that simply don’t hold any significant meaning, premonition, reflection, or depth whatsoever. Ironically, the dream I mentioned earlier was, itself, a “throwaway” dream. Coffee is a HUGE part of life in our household. We are serious, serious coffee drinkers. We talk about coffee, we brew coffee, we go out for coffee, we drink coffee, we think about coffee… and so on.
So the fact that we were in a coffeehouse in a dream is absolutely no surprise. The fact that the barista was someone who’s name I’d heard a few hours before – also no big surprise.
A throwaway dream… although it did make me wake up at 3:00 am craving coffee in the worst way!
It All Depends on Your Feelings About Clowns
Clowns can mean many things to many people. In fact, you could say the word “Clown” to two different people and get two different reactions. When I hear the word, I think of positive words and emotions: Fun, laughter, free-spirits, happiness… But I know several people who actually have clown phobias and when they hear the word “clown,” they grimace like they just saw a three headed snake with a nasty attitude.
If, like me, you associate clowns with happiness, dreaming about clowns is an expression of happiness and fun. It could be that you’re having a lot of fun with life lately and your dream is just an extension of this fun. However, it could also mean that life isn’t all that fun recently and you’re CRAVING laughter and happiness. Needless to say, when you have a clown dream, you’ll know which of these is the case simply by thinking about where you are in life right now.
If you have a clown phobia – or even if you simply think they’re a little scary – your dream has a different interpretation. When we dream about our biggest fears, most of the time it indicates that we are apprehensive about something in particular. We know something lies in front of us that we’re fearful about and this fearfulness takes on the form or our biggest “real life” fear(s).
However, when we dream of personal phobias, it could also indicate that we’ve recently overcome a particular fear or faced a problem head on. The dream is sort of a celebration of this achievement! Generally, when this is the case… in the dream, we will either overcome the thing we fear the most or will simply see it with an absence of fear.
Why In the World Would I Dream of Madonna….
I’m a 20 something year old female who really loves your dream website. I read all of the dream interpretations and have even been helped by a lot of them. I had a dream recently that I’d love for you to take a crack at. First of all, I’m not a Madonna fan. I like her early music but think her later music was kind of embarrassing for her. I had a dream that I was helping Madonna, of all people, find an address. I’m not even a fan, but I was being SO nice to her and she was so grateful and nice to me too. I read in your dream interpretations that you say the dreamer should ask themselves what they associate with their dream symbols or the people in their dreams. With Madonna, I think of someone who is older than me. I don’t think she’s even really that old, but she is older than me and she looks pretty haggard a lot of the time. Withered and all. Anyway, old is the word I associate most with her. Why in the world would I dream about Madonna? -Am I scared of getting old? – Kelly
Well, easy there, you’re talking to someone who’s a Madonna fan! Seriously, I know every word to every song. Yes, even the later ones. Though I’ll admit, they weren’t quite as good as early, vintage Madonna. Also, as a fan, I also hasten to point out that pictures taken of celebrities are often meant to shock us. They make certain to photograph certain celebrities at the worst possible time and some even alter these images. No doubt the pictures you’re referring to have been some of these pics.
As for your dream’s meaning, you’re on the right track with the “associating” exercise, but – ironically – I think you’re going in the wrong direction. If there were any sort of fear, anxiety, or apprehension involved, the dream would have been more negative. However, it was a positive dream which means that it’s highly unlikely anything negative was hidden in the meaning.
In fact, I’d go so far as to say that this dream has a very positive interpretation. For whatever reasons, you are at complete peace with growing older. Maybe you realize that with all the products, information, and services available today, we can fight the aging process like never before. You’ve probably arrived at the place in your life where you realize that age is just a number – nothing more, nothing less.
I believe your subconscious mind produced someone who symbolized growing “older” to you. I also think that it chose someone who (whether you care to admit it or not) represents aging while still having fun and living life on their own terms.
Madonna represents many things to many people but has always been a sex symbol to most. She symbolizes being comfortable with who you are – whatever your age. She even represents an attitude of “If you don’t like me, it’s your loss!”
I believe that the fact your dream was upbeat and positive simply means you haven’t just made peace with growing older but have come to view it as an adventure.
A final note about your dream. You mention you were helping her find an address. When we’re LOOKING for something in our dream, it usually means we’re searching for something in life. However, you were helping her FIND an address which, to me, means you’ve found something recently – comfort with the person you see in the mirror today as well as the one you’ll see in the mirror 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, and 60 years from now!
A Frustrating Dream That’s Actually Telling You Something
What does it mean when you dream that you keep trying to get something but can’t quite reach it? I have had several dreams like this. In the first one, I needed to get on the other side of a fence for some reason (I think something was chasing me). All I knew was I had to get to the other side of the fence, but when I ran toward it, it kept moving away. The further I ran, the more it moved away from me. I couldn’t reach it and actually felt the frustration from this dream all day long the next day.
Another dream was similar. I was at someone’s wedding, putting floating candles in a pond. It was a stupid dream, really. I don’t know anyone getting married and I don’t care about floating candles. I’m a guy who loves football, baseball, hockey, and NBA games, I don’t care about candles or weddings! Anyway, one of my candles (can’t believe I’m even typing these words) blew out and I needed to get it back to me to re-light it. No matter which side I approached it from, I couldn’t reach it!
One more dream. I was playing cards with a friend and dropped one of my cards. Even though it was on the floor.. you guessed it… I couldn’t reach it.
What do these frustrating dreams mean and how can I make them stop?
I actually feel frustrated for you – just reading about your dreams. I can imagine how you must feel! Dreams like this often “build upon” one another because we’ll be thinking a lot about the last dream – even using descriptive words like “frustrating,” “recurring,” etc. We sort of invite these annoying dreams to keep coming around merely by thinking about them.
Problem is, how can we not?!
Frustrating dreams always have a message behind them – even if it’s a small one. The original frustrating dream could have been prompted by a number of things:
- A win that was “just out of reach” – either a sport you were playing, yourself, or a favorite team’s frustrating loss.
- A goal that you’re shooting for that always seems just out of reach. The frustration from trying to lose weight, kick a habit, work out, etc can spill into our dreams. The frustration we feel while we’re awake finds us while we’re asleep!
- An issue at work or school that’s frustrating can also “show up” disguised as something else in your dreams.
Each thing in your dream that was “out of reach” represents something in your “real world” that seems out of reach. Once you realize what this thing is, you can (and should) put together a “can’t miss” plan for reaching your goal. This, obviously, only relates to things within your control. If you’re frustration stems from, say, your favorite baseball team’s losses there’s nothing you can do about that… short of picking a new favorite team.
Very often, simply realizing what the dreams are trying to tell you will cause them to think, “My job here is done.” Then, mercifully, you’ll be rid of them.