Mining Dreams for Insights

For the last few months, I’ve dreamed colorful dreams and remembering those dreams the next morning. Sometimes, those dreams linger all day and pick up again that night.

I’m sure abundant research exists about why we dream and what dreams mean, but here is my take on how dreaming affects me.

Dreams Change Perspective

We’ve all heard the phrase “things will look better in the morning,” and I believe that is true. Fatigue causes challenges to seem overwhelming and makes us focus on the negatives instead of the positives. Forward motion hinges on a beyond-now perspective, and often, rest and dreams help us move beyond what holds us back.

Dreams Help Us Problem-Solve

Sometimes, we over-think problems, making them bigger than they really are. We feel we must problem-solve in our own strength and with our own abilities. If you’re struggling with a problem, pray, then put that problem to bed and see if your dreams lend fresh insights and possible solutions.

Dreams Enhance Creativity

A writing friend once told me our minds work on writing while we sleep. I find that to be true, because I often wake with sentences swirling in my head, waiting to flow through my fingers. Sometimes, those words are a result of what I dreamed during the night.

Creatives often find that doing something else fires their creativity. Inspiration may come while sleep dreaming, or daydreaming. Either way, mine your dreams for revelations and clearer perception.

Dreams are Related to Stressors

I kept my family home for ten years after my mother’s death. My father built the house and every time I entered it, I experienced a flood of pleasant memories and love. But with ownership of the house came responsibility for it, and sometimes that responsibility weighed heavily. Maintaining a house built in the 1950’s, a two-acre yard, and a 45+-year-old swimming pool required constant vigilance.

When it came time to sell the house, it was hard to let go. So much of my life was tied to that place, I felt I was losing part of myself. But once I was no longer responsible for it, I experienced a great sense of relief.

Now, I dream about that house, but often the dreams are crazy scenarios of the swimming pool overflowing and flooding the carport, or searching the house for a vague, faceless family member, but not finding anyone. Those types of dreams are disturbing. Sometimes, they are related to stressors or unresolved issues. Often, if we take time to think about those dreams, we are able to see a deeper meaning and reconcile what is disturbing about them.

Dreams Remind Us of Happier Times

Since my aunt’s death, I’ve dreamed about my parents almost every night. In those dreams, we are with other family members, enjoying a time of reunion. I’m thankful I know that dream will come true one day, when I am reunited with them in heaven. But now, I believe God is reminding me that this life is not all there is and providing me a foretaste of eternity through dreams.

“I will bless the LORD who has advised me; Indeed, my mind instructs me in the night” (Psalm 16:7 NASB).

©CandyArrington

Candy Arrington is a writer, blogger, speaker, and freelance editor. She often writes on tough topics with a focus on moving through, and beyond, difficult life circumstances. Candy has written hundreds of articles, stories, and devotionals published by numerous outlets including: Inspiration.org, Arisedaily.com, CBN.com, Healthgrades.com, Care.com, Focus on the Family, NextAvenue.org, CountryLiving.com, and Writer’s Digest. Candy’s books include Life on Pause: Learning to Wait Well (Bold Vision Books), When Your Aging Parent Needs Care (Harvest House), and AFTERSHOCK: Help, Hope, and Healing in the Wake of Suicide (B&H Publishing Group).

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