Understand the Psychology of Dreams

psychology of dreams

Dream interpretation depends on various theories of psychology and physiology. Dreams are only impressions, thoughts, and the physical images formed by them, that are experienced while sleeping. One has lucid dreams during the brief rapid eye movement (R.E.M) sleep. Dream interpretation is an age-old topic that is still very much in use. Many theories on dream interpretation exist but the main purpose of dreams remains uncertain. Dreams are very much related to human psychology.

Studies suggest that humans have REM (rapid eye movement) sleep, which means that while dreaming, we do not remember or dream. REM sleep enables our body to repair and recharge itself after a day’s work. During this sleep, we experience vivid dreams that sometimes seem to have very disturbing content.

We wake up from our REM sleep each night and then begin the process of dealing with our daily life. Unfortunately, some of our memories remain unenlightened and some of our dreams seem to linger in our minds, often disturbing us. We may find ourselves repeating some of our negative dreams and this could be a sign of depression. If we have nightmares, we must try to learn to cope with them and try to prevent repetition. Some common night terrors include night lights, the telephone, and snakes.

Psychology Of Dreams

A little girl wearing a hat

The majority of our dreams are retrieved accurately but our ability to remember them is questionable. Since a dreamer is in a state of REM sleep, the brain is more likely to store a dream rather than retrieve it later. There are tools, such as dream recall books, that can be used to help a dreamer recall a dream. Dream recall books are often correlated with the formation of trauma and bad experiences. If there is a dream that seems to haunt a dreamer, they should consult their physician to see if a medical condition is responsible.

One of the most influential theories on dreams is the so-called Freudian theory. This school of thought maintains that dreams are symbols of unconscious desires and that these desires are acted upon during waking hours. It has been a source of fascination and controversy since its inception and there are many opposing theories that support and oppose this theory. Carl Jung proposed that dreams were symbolic mirrors of our innermost unconscious desires. James Braid believed that dreams reflected our primitive psychology, while John Locke opined that all dreams were mere images meant to keep us awake.

A Much Ado

Radar chart

Another intriguing theory on the psychology of dreams relates them to memory. Theories suggest that certain dreams enhance memory retention. If you are an insomniac and are afraid that you are about to slip into a coma, you may search your dreams for any sign that you are about to fall asleep. If you find that a particular dream reminds you of a particularly important memory, you may put yourself to sleep at that very moment and try to retrieve the details of that memory. Your subconscious mind will, with your help, remember the details of that memory during your next dreams.

Dream interpretation involves studying the meaning of dreams. Many psychotherapists believe that dreams may cause our behavior in the waking world. If dreams describe a threatening person or situation, you may be more likely to act in a dangerous manner when the threat actually comes to pass. On the other hand, if the dream refers to a loving relationship, you may be inclined to behave in a loving way in the real world as well.

Bottom Line

It is possible to delve into the psychology of dreams yourself. Several online websites offer detailed explanations as to how various dreams can effect your conscious behavior. You may want to use such information to help you sleep better at night. Indeed, understanding how dreams mean can help you gain a deeper understanding of how the psychological processes of our brains work.

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