You know, Freud and ‘nem said that … dreams are like repressed desires of the things that … we wish we could have.
- “Bruh-Man” talking to Martin in the Season 2 episode: “Crunchy Drawers”
Our dreams haunt our memories like Freddy Krueger does on Elm Street, Michael Myers does in Haddonfield, and Jason does at Crystal Lake. Dreams keep us alive, sane, and sometimes insane depending upon what or who you dream about. Some dreams can be detrimental to success, while some may benefit people. I can consider myself a dreamer, but I draw a line between dreams and reality.
Sigmund Freud, world-renowned psychologist and crack addict who went on to “glory,” created a theory that says “the content of dreams is driven by unconscious wish fulfillment.” This means that everything that happens within a dream is all based upon wishes that are created within our realities. Carl Jung, Freud’s protégé, adds his analysis to Freud’s theory of dreams saying that dreams are messages left with the dreamer through the unconscious mind and should be paid attention to. These messages or memories can be helpful because they present revelations to the dreamer and can resolve religious and emotional problems, or fears. Jung also believed that recurring dreams demand attention because of a neglected issue.
Maybe Bruh-Man was on to something.
I remember I had one dream every night for 15 days straight. I was fresh off of a hard semester and I was back and home and happy to be there. But during the semester, I was not getting the adequate rest I needed, so I was trying to get as much as I could when I had a break. I remember this dream so vividly that I created a 3 page narrative about it and send it to my father and a couple of professors. Since my father has used me as a case study for years especially since he received his masters in Professional Clinical Counseling from Argosy University of Psychology, he told to me that I needed to stop bottling up so much and start expressing myself. I’ve never been able to interpret the dream, but once I wrote it down I never had it again or one like it in its capacity.
The dreams that we have not only express our desire to have everything we wish for, but it also helps us come to terms with what bothers us so frequently. Dreams can sometimes deter us from the bigger picture. I’m currently reading John Maxwell’s Failing Forward and he expresses how we can turn our mistakes into stepping stones for success. He gives lessons and other nuggets to show the reader that failure always happens and it comes with life, it is how you deal with the adversity when it comes and how you keep moving forward. When we have these dreams and they have negative events inside of them, the negative notions from the past stop us from going through with a potential landmark event, whether it is as complex as a decision to leave an organization or as simple as sending a text message to express your deepest feelings to someone.
But dreams can also have benefits. They can be manifested within your unconscious as a simple walkthrough of a life-changing event or a rehearsal of another event that you have prepared for. The perfectionist inside of you does not want you fail, and I know the one inside of me makes contingency plans for everything in case something goes wrong. [(Personally, these contingency plans have a way of talking me out of a situation or taking calculated risks for my own well-being.) The funny thing is, is that I advise others to do things different that I have. (I haven't been drinking my own kool-aid.)]
One question I do raise is: how do we use these repressed desires to express our realities? I assert that if we take these little notions–positive or negative–and use them–whether we succeed or fail–to our advantage and realize that the world is bigger than one event. It does not matter how big or small the event is. We have to use our minds to help change the pattern and paths we venture upon. If we change our thinking, we can change the discourse we are engaged in and employ what Chris Prentiss outlines in his book Zen and the Art of Happiness and become “authors of our every next moment.”
Food For Thought: How do we use dreams to our advantage? Do we just disregard them and carry on with our same unconscious desires? What else can we do to make sure that our repressed desires become expressed realities?
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