Why Do We Dream?

Dreaming is non-essential when it comes to survival as a body but is essential with regard to our development and evolution as metaphysical beings. Dreaming is the communication between our conscious mind and our unconscious mind, helping people create wholeness. Dreams are the bridge that allows movement back and forth between what we think we know and what we really know. Dreams let us play out painful or puzzling emotions or experiences in a safe place. Dreams also allow us to process information or events that may be painful or confusing in an environment that is at once emotionally real but physically unreal.

What is Dream Analysis?

Dream analysis is both a therapeutic tool and a therapeutic process. As a tool, dream analysis takes the manifest content of dreams and examines it for the latent content. Manifest content is the content that is seen in a dream. Latent content is the underlying hopes and fears represented by the dream. The process of examining manifest content to identify latent content is also considered dream analysis. Dream analysis is a key component in the process of becoming whole as a person, it reveals a person’s deepest desires and deepest wounds. So analyzing your dreams helps you gain a deeper understanding of yourself.

How Does Dream Analysis Suggest the Mind Works?

Psychological researchers are still seeking to understand why people dream and what causes specific content in dreams. So far, it is clear that dreaming can occur throughout the sleeping hours. Some of the most vivid dreams may occur during Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep. Sleep itself is known to be crucial for human functioning and well-being. It is thought by some psychologists and researchers that dreams may represent some communication between the conscious mind and the unconscious mind. It is thought that perhaps dreams allow the mind to communicate and transmit information across these levels of consciousness. Further, it is believed that perhaps dreams allow the mind to resolve certain emotions and experiences. For example, after a traumatic experience, a person may have upsetting dreams about the event, as their mind seeks to process it and find some resolution.

Does Dream Analysis Work?

Research does indicate that dream analysis seems to be helpful as part of mental health therapy. It is unusual for it to be the only approach or technique used. Most often, it will be applied as a broader part of therapy, depending on the client’s preferences and interests, to elicit some benefits.

What Are The Benefits of Dream Analysis

Wholeness Dream analysis is a key component in the process of becoming whole as a person. Dreams reveal a person’s deepest desires and deepest wounds. So analyzing your dreams helps you gain a deeper understanding of yourself since Dreaming is the communication between our conscious mind and our unconscious mind, helping people create wholeness. Dreams are the bridge that allows movement back and forth between what we think we know and what we really know. Problem Solving Through intuitive wisdom, many dreams when correctly interpreted offer unique solutions to problems or issues you may be facing in waking life. Guidance Just like having your own inner guru, your dream messages can be a wonderful source of guidance to help you along on your life journey or if you’re feeling indecisive or stuck. Insight Dreams can provide insight in the most magical way and often with highly unique information and symbology that only you would understand. One of the most powerful benefits of dream analysis is gaining deep personal insight into your waking life and life journey. Healing Dreams can bring recent or long standing issues and repressed memories and emotions to the surface. By acknowledging and working with these dreams, healing can occur naturally and spontaneously. Big Dreams The nature of what Jung called ‘Big Dreams’ or soul dreams can themselves be game changers. These dreams are unique to other dreams in their profundity and often occur during times of personal crisis or critical phases of life. Big dreams are never forgotten and interpreting them can elicit deep emotional shifts, radical changes in perception and abrupt changes in life direction. Relief Dream analysis can offer much relief to a disturbing or highly emotional dream and/or nightmare. Dreams are not always what they seem and by working with your dream you can gain significant insight into what is happening in your waking life. In most circumstances reality is rarely as intense as your dreams! Learning There is a plethora of research supporting dreams aiding the learning process. If you are learning something new, literally sleeping and dreaming about your task or project can help with memory retention, problem solving and gaining better understanding of your topic or field of interest. Inspiration Many incredible works of art and invention throughout history have been attributed to dreams. One of the most exciting benefits of dream interpretation is receiving that a-ha moment for your next project or inspiration for a life change. Confirmation Dream analysis can provide much needed confirmation on issues or feelings you have been dealing with in your waking life.
Transformation Through correct dream analysis you can work with your dream message to transform any issues, feelings or thought patterns to improve your current circumstances and create the life you want. Illumination Your subconscious absorbs incredible amounts of information that often play out in dreams. By analysing your dreams you can be alerted or illuminated to something important in your waking life that needs your attention. Future Preparation Dreams have the uncanny ability to prepare you for future events that will take place in your life. Have you ever looked back through your dream journal and been amazed that some aspects of the dreams you recorded had occurred in your life at a later date or dreamt about that morning meeting you were preparing for the previous evening? Through dream analysis you can be better prepared for these events or alter your reality accordingly to create something more positive for yourself. Self Discovery Your dreams are always highlighting your potential, your thoughts and emotions as well as areas for self development. One of the most satisfying benefits of dream analysis is learning more about yourself and discovering more of your potential and limitlessness. Dream Quality As you begin working with and paying close attention to your dreams, they have a wonderful way of responding. Your dream experiences may become more vivid, increase in clarity and dream messages become more profound. Overall you can expect an increase in the quality and even quantity of your dreams. Sense of Awe The more you work with your dreams the more you become aware and appreciative of the awesome creativity and ingenuity of your own dreaming mind. Your dreaming mind is communicating with you in its own multi-dimensional language of images, emotions and multi-level associations versus straightforward words and concepts. Once you begin understanding this language, your dream messages increase in clarity and may even blow your mind when compared to ordinary daily communication. Trust me, you’ll be delighted at what you uncover. Positivity One of the most rewarding benefits of dream analysis is finding the positive in your dream. Even highly disturbing dreams or nightmares contain positive connotations or insights that you can work with to improve your waking life… or further enhance a happy one!

Techniques Used in Dream Analysis?

Psychoanalysis: In psychoanalytic theory, dreams represent wish fulfillment, unconscious desires, and conflicts. Dreams contain both manifest and latent content. Manifest content includes information from the dream as the dreamer remembers it. Latent content represents the repressed, symbolic meaning embedded within the dream. During dream analysis, the person in therapy shares the manifest content of the dream with the therapist. After specific symbols are pulled from the manifest content, the therapist utilizes free association to facilitate the exploration of repressed material. Jungian analysis: Jungian analysis is similar to Freud's psychoanalysis in that dreams are probed for unconscious material and symbols are explored for hidden meaning. However, in Jungian dream analysis, the dreamer is more crucial in unlocking the dream's message. Additionally, dreams are seen as attempts to express and create rather than efforts to repress and disguise, as in Freud's theory. Jungian dream analysis is based on Jung's belief that unless the interpretation resonates with the dreamer, the interpretation is not helpful. Jungian analysis also utilizes a technique called amplification. Amplification is based on the assumption that humanity shares a collective unconscious, or a set of inherited universal experiences. In this technique, collectively agreed-upon associations are explored. Gestalt therapy: Dreamwork in Gestalt therapy is implemented somewhat differently than in psychoanalysis and Jungian analysis. Gestalt therapists believe that dreams are existential messages we send to ourselves. These messages are actively explored to bring dream content into a person's actual life. A major technique used in Gestalt dream analysis is the “Take the Part of” technique. In this process, the therapist asks the person to write down everything remembered about the dream. The person is then asked to act out each “part” of the dream, creating a dialogue between the parts. Existential art therapy: In this approach, dreams are explored through an existential lens. The therapist acts as a witness as the person in therapy attempts a journey of self-discovery. Dream images are explored, interacted with, and analyzed through art. The existential art therapist encourages those in therapy through their attempts to find meaning from the imagery, providing support but avoiding making interpretations for the individual.

Do You Use Singular or Integrated Dream Analysis Tenchinques?

I use an integrated approach that combines various aspects of the aforementioned therapeutic tecniques. I then customize the ticnique based on the client’s needs and preferences. An integrated approach is usually more effective than a singular therapeutic approach. There are, however, circumstances where a client might benefit more from just a singular approach.

What is The History of Dream Analysis?

Dreams have intrigued the human race for thousands of years. In ancient times, the Babylonians and Egyptians believed dreams were prophetic and held heavenly meaning. Aristotle interpreted dreams as psychological phenomena and viewed them as the life of one's soul while asleep. In the middle of the 19th century, the first scientifically-based dream research took place, but it was not until Freud published The Interpretation of Dreams in 1900 that dream analysis widely developed. His was the first established theory that incorporated dreams within the context of the helping relationship. Jung adapted Freud's theory, proposing that dreams do not signify repressed unconscious drives but represent expressions of creativity aimed at resolution. Since then, other therapy models like Gestalt therapy, art therapy, and cognitive behavioral therapy have used dream analysis in one fashion or another. Although dream analysis has waned in contemporary use, it remains an integral part of some theoretical frameworks. According to a study from the Journal of Psychotherapy Practice and Research, dream analysis appears to be most popular among psychoanalysts trained in psychodynamic theory. The study found that dream analysis is also used in the following models, although it is not as common: person-centered therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, and Gestalt therapy. Additionally, psychotherapists who participated in the study estimated that approximately 70% of the individuals they treated obtained some benefit from dream analysis.