By: Terry A Rifkin L.C.S.W.

People often wonder about dreams; especially when they come to us unhindered and uncontrolled. And most of the time, the dreams are perplexing that it has become a popular objective to uncover what the dreams really mean. This is what is called dream interpretation. It is the process of extracting meaning from dreams. This practice has long been done since the time of ancient Egypt and ancient Greece. Now, dreams are intensely studied in certain psychological branches.

According to most beliefs, dreams are communicative. The brain is a complicated thing; it has many facets. Dreams are the manifestations of the facets that do not manage to come out when we are conscious and rationally awake. As our conscious mind goes to sleep, the other facets of the brain are given the chance to rise to the surface, and that’s where dreams come from. A lot of beliefs point the main source to be the area in the brain that controls imagination, while others believe that the brain’s memory bank is also responsible for dreams. This can lead us to the discovery and interpretation of dreams and what they mean. Dreams often have imaginative aspects; these are the parts we do not understand. Sometimes, these dreams are fantastical. However, dreams also have parts that are familiar to use. That’s why we often dream of people we know, places we’ve been and things we’ve seen. Even things we see in passing sometimes factor into our dreams just as much as things we think about often. This is because our brain stores a lot of information, some unconsciously, some consciously. As the conscious part of us sleeps, the memory can explore its many recordings, whether major or minor. Also, since the brain processes our perceptions and emotions, dreams are also influenced by these. So if memory and imagination are responsible for what factors into your dreams, your emotions, beliefs, and fears are responsible for how your dreams unfold. There are many ways that can help you figure out what dreams really mean. There are now a lot of dream interpretation websites online. Some of the websites already have prepared answers for your questions. For example, certain animals, body parts, seasons, and colors are attached to certain meanings. Some interpret something as simple as an alleyway as a situation in which you are confined or restricted, an alien as a new and strange experience or encounter, a baby as a new event, a burglar as an unwelcome situation, event, or problem, a forest as a confusing situation, gun as having or wanting control, an island as a desire to get away, and so on. Some objects also point to our dominating desires. For example; single people who want to find marriage, dream of marriage or perhaps a simple wedding ring, people dealing with financial difficulties dream of money. Given this, dreams can be interpreted in many ways, and what they really mean may vary based on different interpretations. If you want to know what your dreams mean, break them down into imaginative parts and parts that you remember, and immediately link them to where they were reinforced by your memory. Then, consider your own feelings, experiences, thoughts, ideas, needs, and wants to interpret what happens in your dream.

Terry is an author and highly sought out expert on eating disorders, depression and anxiety. She frequently speaks to special groups and businesses in the Southern California area and can be followed on her blog at this link.