Dreams are the stuff of mystery and wonder. Their messages lie hidden in plain view, but they’re often difficult to read.

There are a lot of different beliefs about dreams and their significance out there. However, I’d argue that the truth about dreams is far more compelling.

Often, what we experience while dreaming strikes straight through to the heart of who we are, allowing us a glimpse into ourselves with greater clarity than we typically experience while awake.

Anyone can escape into sleep, we are all geniuses when we dream, the butcher’s the poet’s equal there.

– Emile M. Cioran

So, what do your dreams say about you? How would you even know?

First, let’s talk about how to “translate” your dreams to discern their message.

How to find out what your dreams are saying

First, it’s important to understand that there are essentially two things your dreams tell you:

  1. They tell you what you want
  2. They tell you what you don’t want (or what you’re afraid of)

When you dream about buying that new house, getting that sports car, jet-setting with your perfect partner, or winning the lottery, it’s a feel-good experience — you’re getting what you want.

However, when you get what you don’t want, it’s called a nightmare because we’re experiencing what we’re afraid of.

Some of us fall in and out of the dream state and don’t always remember everything (and not every dream is significant), but it’s all there and it always points to one of those two fundamental things.

So, what does this have to do with figuring out what your dreams are saying about you? It’s pretty simple: what you want and what you’re afraid of are two of the most fundamental aspects of who you are as a person. Those two things, when taken together, quite literally dictate your entire life.

How knowing the message in your dreams can help you improve

It’s clear that what we experience when we’re dreaming is significant (at least, it can be). It often has to do with something very important, something about us that affects our life.

Understanding what your dreams say about you is important because we often don’t really know what we want and what we’re afraid of.

Often times, we’re pursuing something that isn’t true to who we are and fear and lifelong conditioning are blocking us from taking action. So much of what is conditioned into us as a child, and later through society’s many established ideas, suppresses our true self and hides it away from us, deep within our subconscious mind.

But your subconscious comes out to play at night when you’re fast asleep, so you have the opportunity to glimpse your fears and desires without obstruction.

Think you’re on the right track?

What are you doing when you’re fast asleep in dream land? Are you dreaming about your work? Is it pleasant or more of a fear-based experience?

Your dreams can tell you if you’re on the right path, following what you were meant to do and being true to yourself or settling and doing something because society or other people have pressured you to be something you’re not. From there, you can course-correct and start living the life you weren’t meant to live.

Is fear dictating your life?

Do you dream of doing something entirely different from what you’re doing now? Are you somewhere different, with someone else, or living a different life? Or do you have nightmares where all your worst fears come true?

Understanding how fear is affecting your dreams can give you just the information you need to break away from that fear and start really living, with the ability to check in with your dreams as time goes on to see if you continue to feel the same way or have truly broken free.