Don’t miss out on any of the posts in this series! Subscribe (top left) to receive posts in your inbox.
Welcome back, Sweet Reader! Today I am pairing #’s 4 and 5 of 33 Ways to work with your Dreams together.
When I first started working with dreams, a decade ago, all I knew to do was Way #4. And then I learned that it is “frowned upon” in the field of dream work. So, I tried to get away from it. But I’ll tell you the truth. I discovered that so long as you pair #4 with #5, you can keep using Way #4 very successfully.
#4 Use dream dictionaries
Yes, dream dictionaries. You can find them everywhere. There are countless dream dictionaries available online and in bookstores around the world. People generally either dismiss them as nonsense, are obsessed with figuring out which one “works”, or amass a library-like collection of them (like I do)! I have my family and friends to thank for my hefty collection. And every professional in the dreaming field, including me, will (or should) tell you that dream dictionaries are not to be used to define the meaning of any dream. That’s not what a dream dictionary is for, y’all.
Dream dictionaries help you begin to consider various ways to think about each symbol. When looking into a dream dictionary, you need to know what you’re looking up. That means you have to decide what symbols or actions in the dream are considered the “main” ones. Doing that is helpful in and of itself. And then, you look into the dictionary to find the meaning. But, please please do not take what is written as definitive and stop there. Do not JUST go to a dream dictionary.
Use the dictionary to peak your curiosity and then keep on exploring!
In fact, I’d encourage you to use many dream dictionaries– this is where the internet might be preferred over a physical book (unless you have a collection at home). Use dream dictionaries to see various ways that different cultures and societies and professional fields (psychology, astrology, etc) might approach a symbol from that specific point of view. And then pair your findings with the next strategy…
#5 Define a symbol for yourself
After you look through a few different symbol interpretations from other “experts”, give it a try yourself. Think about your own personal experiences with your chosen symbol. Some dream coaches might even suggest that you do this before you reference dictionaries. In fact, well I think I will suggest it too! Yes, do this first, y’all.
For example, if a bear appears in your dream, in addition to studying various interpretations of bear, ask yourself these questions-
What do I think of bears?
How do I feel about them?
What are my personal experiences (if any) with bears?
Do I have any favorite stories or movies that contain a bear?
If so, what did the bear mean in the story?
Have I encountered any animals similar to a bear in waking life recently?
…and so on.
In essence you’re defining the symbol for yourself. Record what you discover.
#5 Bonus idea: Keep a running record of all the dream symbols you define for yourself- making your very own personal dream dictionary!
I have so enjoyed our trek through the first five Ways to work with your dreams! Thank you for joining me on this rummage through my treasure chest of dream work tools. I’m attempting to post on Monday-Thursday for this series, so check out the next post on Monday, OK? Sweet dreams until then…
Sweet Readers, I hope you’re enjoying this post series. I look forward to hearing from you in the comments, or on social media. I welcome your questions and if you want me to work with your dream, I offer email dream interpretations and private one-to-one dream coaching sessions!