The meaning of dreams

I remember school telling me dreams originated in the right hemisphere.1 Dreaming involves both hemispheres and we’ve still got a lot to figure out about it.

The subconscious has such interesting ways of talking. I’m not well tuned into the complexities of my own emotions. Analyzing my own dreams helps me figure out where I’m at. There are dream dictionaries out there where they will tell you what the symbols mean but fortunately, we’re not simple enough for dream dictionaries to work.

Your symbols for feeling lost, lonely, or trapped aren’t the same as mine. If we share a culture and a set of experiences, they might have some overlap2 but not the kind of overlap where a dictionary can make sense of it.

A lot of my dreams don’t really need interpretation. They’re obvious rehashes of elements of my day I wasn’t really happy with. Sometimes I’ll be other people in other places doing things I don’t have any personal experience with. Sometimes those dreams can be really great for story ideas. But mostly they’re just as shifting, disconnected, and illogical as any other dream. I’m just a different person in a different world (sometimes literally, some times metaphorically).

Some grab my attention immediately and others are recurring themes that appeared seemingly out of nowhere. I focus on those.

Last night, I dreamed (a few things but I’ll leave the others out) I was checking into a three story hotel and they put me on the third floor. No matter what, I couldn’t make it to the third floor. All I wanted to do was go to bed but there was a huge unmoving line in one area, the elevator was broken down in another, and I couldn’t find the stairs.

Without knowing me and what’s going on in my life, it’s difficult to guess what that’s about. A dream dictionary isn’t going to know I’ve done too much travelling for work. It’s not going to know I feel like I haven’t had a chance to relax in ten months.

I don’t need to do much reading between the lines to figure this one out. Almost every entry in my journal for the last several months is about the same thing this dream is about.

My emotional needs aren’t being met. Not by a partner or friend. They’re not being met by me. And my dreams are letting me know.

If I knew how to meet those needs, I would. But I don’t and it’s become pointless to search the internet for anything mildly subtle. I have no idea where to go with my search for better balance. I’ll keep trying though. If I forget how important it is to stop being miserable and rushed all the time, my dreams will remind me.

  1. Kind of like how they used to say different parts of the tongue tasted different things [return]
  2. There used to be this idea humans dreamed in black and white. Bad ideas die slowly so when I was in school the curriculum still taught this idea. I had vivid color in mine. It turned out growing up in a culture where black and white TV and movies were the main forms of entertainment probably turned the memorable dreams of a generation or two black and white. But probably only in areas with TV. [return]
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