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Dreams

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by gailnyc, May 7, 2013.

  1. gailnyc

    gailnyc Well known member

    I am reading Dr. Alexander's book and one of the things he suggests doing is writing down your dreams when you wake up. He suggests telling yourself to remember your dreams right before you go to sleep. I did this last night and it worked! I woke up from a dream and wrote it all down. (It was a pretty boring dream about work.)

    But then I couldn't fall back asleep. This was at 4:30 and I don't usually get up till 6.

    So I want to keep doing this but I don't want to lose hours of sleep each night.

    Suggestions? Have any of you tried this? Has it helped you?
     
  2. Leslie

    Leslie Well known member

    I haven't done it to the point of writing it all down in the middle of the night, but I have been trying to focus more and more on remembering what has happened in my dreams. I generally concentrate on what was going on in the one that happened right before I woke up in the morning and write down the details of that one (because I don't want to be up all night either). It's been really helpful for figuring out what's going on with me when I have no idea. A month or so ago I thought a flare-up was tied to stress with one particular person. I focused in on everything having to do with that person (almost obsessively) and I wasn't getting anywhere. As I was falling asleep I asked, ok I begged, my subconscious to please give me some indication that I was on the right track or some kind of clue as to what I overlooked if I wasn't. That night my dreams were monopolized by an entirely different person - someone who was very indirectly involved in the stress who hadn't even entered my mind. When I switched my energies to focusing on it from that angle the flare-up started to subside.
     
  3. gailnyc

    gailnyc Well known member

    Wow, Leslie, very interesting! Maybe I'll try something like that.

    Last night was much better. I told myself that I wanted to remember my dreams AND wake up at 6am. It worked!!
     
  4. yb44

    yb44 Beloved Grand Eagle

    A therapist once told me that it isn't so important to remember specific details in dreams as it is to recall how you were feeling during the dream and after you woke up. One of my past reoccurring dreams involved having a third child which in reality I didn't ever want. I was the third child in my family and because of my own experience I was petrified of having another baby. Every time I woke up from one of these dreams I was so relieved that it was only a dream yet I kept remembering how upset I was during the dream.
     
    veronica73 and tarala like this.
  5. Leslie

    Leslie Well known member

    I'm glad you were able to sleep until 6 Gail, that's great! I was just looking at a dream interpretation website - trying to find out why an ex-boyfriend who I haven't seen in years has suddenly been making appearances in my dreams (and he's coming up in conversations lately too) and why his presence, and the color red seem to be the only things I can remember when I wake up. That website actually said to do exactly what you did - to tell yourself right before you went to sleep that you wanted to remember all your dreams when you woke up after a full night's rest. Further evidence that the subconscious is always listening and actually does take direction!

    I'm going to try putting more focus on the "feelings" during the dreams and see where that takes me. The only time I really notice feelings with dreams is if I wake up scared or anxious or feeling really safe and cared for. It's kind of funny because I generally wake up feeling safe and cared for after a dream that the ex shows up in - and that's funny because it was a completely toxic, controlling, manipulative relationship. I remember a lot of wanting to feel safe and cared for in that relationship, but not actually feeling that way so it's odd that the dreams would be producing those results.
     
  6. gailnyc

    gailnyc Well known member

    Maybe the dreams are trying to sort out what you couldn't sort out in real life.
     
  7. Leslie

    Leslie Well known member

    You could have written the dream analysis website Gail! When I looked into it further the general thoughts on an ex entering dreams is just exactly that.
     
  8. gailnyc

    gailnyc Well known member

    Actually, I got the idea from Dr. Alexander's chapter on dreams!
     
  9. yb44

    yb44 Beloved Grand Eagle

    Last night before bed I told my brain to remember my dreams. I did wake up briefly in the small hours and pondered the dream I had been having and then fell back to sleep. I can't remember the details of the dream but it did feature work colleagues and other random people I don't actually know. The overriding feeling I got from the dream was boredom. This ties in completely with my working life. For the last two years after a sideways move within the same organisation I have been bored to the point of tears. I am not the sort that likes to sit around doing nothing. I enjoy keeping busy. This past week I have resigned from my job after months of consideration and dithering. I do have something else to go to it and it will be on a self-employed basis so I will have some control over my time. At last I see the light at the end of the boredom tunnel.
     
  10. gailnyc

    gailnyc Well known member

    Wow, good for you! That sounds like an exciting new adventure. I, too, can't stand being bored. It's part of why I became a teacher after many years in (boring) publishing.
     
  11. Leslie

    Leslie Well known member

    I've been trying to focus on the "feelings" in the dreams lately and I believe I'm starting to make some progress with it. Last night I woke up in the middle of the night feeling all the same physiological anxiety responses from a dream that I feel when I'm fully conscious and anxious. I can't remember the details of the dream itself other than there were 3 people in my life playing the roles of 3 spiritual personalities. Each one was basically blowing me off, telling me to go to the other for whatever it was I was seeking help with. I was feeling unworthy, uncared about, unloved, and frustrated - boy was I frustrated! Reminds me of the feeling that I used to get when I was a kid and my parent's would bounce me from one to the other with "I don't know, go ask your mother/father", and of course the efforts of following those instructions were always followed with the oh so helpful "what did your mother/father say".
     
  12. yb44

    yb44 Beloved Grand Eagle

    It appears that being uncared for is a common theme in your dreams, Leslie. I was listening in one evening to one of Forest's conferences and there was a discussion about dreams. Someone mentioned that every person in our dreams represents some aspect of ourselves. So if this were the case those 3 spiritual personalities would be 3 aspects of your own personality. Interesting. I can also relate to the feelings of frustration. All we want is some love and guidance from our elders and it is highly enraging when they pass us from pillar to post. We end up not only frustrated but confused. What are we supposed to do? Figure it all out ourselves as wee tots? It is hard enough figuring stuff out as adults. What I also read from your dream (not that I am some dream expert, I hasten to add) is that you are frustrated with yourself because you know that what you are seeking is within you now. We all have the ability, even if we choose not to recognise it, to care for ourselves, to love ourselves and to make ourselves feel worthy.
     
  13. Leslie

    Leslie Well known member

    Thank you so much for your insight! I completely amazed by how much content there is in just those few little details that I could recall from the dream. It never ceases to amaze me how completely blind I can be to myself. I think I get so caught up focusing in on the minute details that I completely miss the big picture. I totally missed the "being uncared for" theme that I can easily see now that you've opened my eyes! I've been working so hard at trying to treat myself the way I treat others that I completely overlooked the accompanying anger with myself for not having done it sooner and all the associated needless suffering. I'm certain you're on to something because I was completely relaxed and symptom-free when I began reading, and as I progressed my primary TMS site called more and more attention to itself. Thank you, thank you!!

    I do have one question though, understanding that you are not a dream expert, hoping to draw further from your insight. If those 3 spiritual personalities were representing 3 aspects of my own personality, what might they be? I think I'm seeing how they're sort of passing me around because none wants to take the lead and responsibility of guiding me out of this confusion, or maybe they just honestly don't know which way to go, but that's as far as I can get with it.
     
  14. yb44

    yb44 Beloved Grand Eagle

    Why are there 3, I wonder. Is this number significant in any way or do you think it was just random? Aspects of your personality? Possibly the traits that affect your recovery: the fearful/anxious one, the people pleaser and the perfectionist or the optimist, the pessimist and the fence sitter/one who wants to run, hide and not think about things either way? I sometimes read too many forum postings and get confused. Different viewpoints all making some sense with me not always having a handle on my own viewpoint. Ask your mind before you go to bed tonight to provide with more clues as to what those 3 personalities are.
     
  15. Gigalos

    Gigalos Beloved Grand Eagle

    I like this thread. Sometimes I am able to connect a dream to something about me, sometimes I can't make anything out of it.. I'll try harder next time or post it here for others to help me figure it out :)
     
  16. gailnyc

    gailnyc Well known member

    So true! I think this probably could apply to many of us (I know it applies to me)!
     
    Leslie likes this.
  17. Leslie

    Leslie Well known member

    I am definitely going to ask for more clues! I don't know if the number 3 is significant or not. It's always been part of my life, I am 1 of 3 kids, my parents were each 1 of 3 kids. And when I read Dr Brady's book I learned that I do have 3 of the TMS personality traits. When I read Dr Sarno's work I thought I was primarily a perfectionist with some goodist tendencies. Turns out I am primarily fear prone (which I did not realize on my own), then goodist, and finally perfectionist - and personally, the more I learn the more I think that the perfectionism and people-pleaser are actually the result of the fear prone.
     
  18. yb44

    yb44 Beloved Grand Eagle

    Definitely. We fear not being perfect and able to please others. If we don't, they won't accept us, care for us, love us, nor will we love ourselves. We would feel outcast and isolated from them as well as detached from ourselves. Getting into the existential stuff now.:)

    I will have to look at Dr Brady's book. He seems to have some good stuff on the personality traits. I copied and pasted something you wrote in another post about Brady's interpretation of the legalist personality. I sent it to a family member whose mother I believe, on a scale of 1 to 10 (10 being highly legalist), is a 10. And now I am digressing...best get to bed and see what my dreams have to say.
     
  19. Leslie

    Leslie Well known member

    Exactly!!
    Dr Brady's book had a very indept section on the personality traits, as well as a ton of questions to ask yourself to determine whether or not the trait fit you. I have a couple of family members that I believe are highly "legalist" personalities. It's entertaining (until you get caught in the middle) to watch them interact with each other. Neither of them can recognize the trait in themselves, nor can they figure out why they can't get along! Trying to explain to them that they can't both be "right" when they're on opposite sides is like trying to explain to a 3 year old why he can't eat the entire cake for breakfast!
     

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