My Dreams: What Do They Really Mean?

My Dreams: What Do They Really Mean?

By Kathy Koches

My dreams


I have always been a dreamer. Not just a “day dreamer” but I dream almost every night. Usually I don’t remember my dreams the next morning, or only retain a wisp of memory of them. However, occasionally I dream so vividly that I remember all the details. Often I have a recurring dream of being “lost.” Sometimes it is in familiar surroundings and I can’t find my way out and sometimes in a totally new place. Because these “lost” dreams have been occurring throughout most of my life, I wanted to know if there was any significance to them.

One theory states that dreams don’t actually mean anything. Instead they are merely electrical brain impulses that pull random thoughts and imagery from our memories. The theory suggests that humans construct dream stories after they wake up. This is a natural attempt to make sense of it all.

Once in a meditation workshop I was asked to look deeply into my reflection in a mirror and say the first thing that came to mind about who I saw. My response was “a little girl lost.” I now wonder if that was a reflection of my childhood trauma of losing both my parents to a drunk driver. I thought I had coped well with the loss, but perhaps, buried deep in my subconscious mind, there still lived that little lost girl, even after more than 50 years.

I did a little online research, and found that most dream interpretation sites say that usually being lost in a dream denotes being anxious or scared. It doesn’t always mean this though, and actually it comes back to the situation where you dream about the things you’re scared of. It’s like your mind is just playing tricks on you and saying ‘you know that thing you’re terrified of? Here’s what it feels like’. Sometimes dreaming about being lost can mean that you’re lacking direction in your life or you’re feeling like you don’t have any goals or achievements. 

According to the Dream Dictionary “To dream that you are lost suggests that you have lost your direction in life or that you have lost sight of your goals. You may be feeling worried and insecure about the path you are taking in life. If you try to call for help, then it means that you are trying to reach out for support. You are looking for someone to lean on. Alternatively, being lost means that you are still adjusting to a new situation in which the rules and conditions are ever changing.”

I don’t feel this is an accurate interpretation of my dreams. I have made many goals in life, worked hard, and achieved them. I am very happy about the path my life has taken and I don’t feel I live in a “new situation” anymore. So what else could they mean?

I looked up “rescue” because many times my soulmate appears in my dreams to show me the way. The Dream Dictionary says that “To dream that you are being rescued or rescue others represents an aspect of yourself that has been neglected or ignored. You are trying to find a way to express this neglected part of yourself. Alternatively, it symbolizes a subconscious cry for help. Perhaps you are too proud in your waking life to ask for assistance.”

Well, maybe, but I don’t feel neglected or ignored, quite the contrary. I feel loved and cherished. Hmmmm… Sometimes I dream that I am lost on a city street (either familiar or unfamiliar). One interpretation of this dream says that having a dream where you become lost and confused on a city street, particularly if you were searching for a particular building or address, reflects a particularly ambitious and adventurous aspect of your personality that you may have been ignoring or putting off recently. You may wish to travel to some faraway and exotic location or participate in some extreme sports. If, by the end of your dream, you found the place you were looking for only to get lost inside the building itself, it means you should rely more on your own experience and intuition to guide you in your decision-making processes, particularly if you are working on a task or toward a goal that is important to you.” Travel to a faraway place, sure, but extreme sports? Me? Now that one made me laugh!

Another dream interpretation source says that “Being lost in dreams is often a reflection of your current state of mind. You could be feeling direction-less and unsure about your next steps both in terms of your chosen career and personal development. In addition, this dream symbol could also be a reference to being overwhelmed by a ton of responsibilities and commitments. The sheer number of the things you have to attend to could be affecting your ability to prioritize and tackle problems in an efficient manner. Perhaps you need to take a breather from all the stress so you can find your center again and clear you mind. Once your mind is uncluttered, you can begin to figure out how to focus your efforts towards doing what needs to be done.”

Now this interpretation hits a little closer to home. I have taken on some additional responsibilities and commitments of late. While I don’t feel direction-less or unsure I do feel somewhat overwhelmed by the sheer number of things I have to attend to. I have taken an online job recently and have much less free time than I had before.

However, I do like the part that says I need to take a breather, find my center and clear my mind. Now we’re getting somewhere. I need a vacation!

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