Anxiety dreams and hidden meanings

This month, I had a dream about three or four guys leaving some sort of entertainment convention. One of the fellows, an older gentleman, gets shot in the back of the head. But the resulting visual looks like the second explosion in Beirut recently, the one that reminds most people of an atomic bomb mushroom cloud.

The next day, guys, including me, are leaving the convention. Suddenly we see the assassin, so we run to a nearby car. But I didn’t have time to get in, so I’m holding onto the section of the driver’s side door since the window was rolled down. We come to a roadblock, and a kindly older sheriff type drove us home.

What the heck did THAT mean? Someone named Sierra Skelly noted my bizarre COVID-driven nightmares. She’s been experiencing intense dreams too! She thought I’d find value in this guide to common anxiety dreams and the description below.

If you’ve experienced weird, bizarre, or confusing dreams since the pandemic hit, you’re not alone. From being chased by flying monkeys to finding yourself standing in front of a live audience in the nude, many people are experiencing weird dreams the past few months. But, what exactly are these dreams and what do they mean?

Weird, unpleasant dreams that cause distress are called anxiety dreams. They can be scarier than nightmares and often leave you feeling anxious even after you’ve woken up. To learn a bit more about what these dreams mean, the team at Casper reached out to sleep experts to uncover the true meaning behind these weird dreams.

Dreams of Being Chased

According to Lauri Quinn Loewenberg, a professional dream analyst, dreams where you are running away from something could be associated with Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD). Running away in a dream can represent the avoidance of social interactions. However, this is not true for everyone with SAD.

If you experience these dreams and don’t have a social anxiety disorder, it could refer to something you’re avoiding in your personal life. Are you avoiding the reality of the pandemic? Worried about financial issues?

Roger muses

AM I experiencing SAD? Probably. Am I running away from social interactions? With COVID, it’s more the case that social interactions are avoiding ME. No choir. Limited interactions with people that don’t involve ZOOM/Google hangout/et al. I’m certainly aware of the reality of the pandemic. My financial situation is not perilous.

Dreams of House Fires

Recurring dreams of house fires (whether you’re watching one burn or burning down with it) are said to be the “ultimate stress dream.” With everything going on in the world right now, many of us are feeling stress and this stress can sneak into our dreams in the form of house fires.

If you’re experiencing these types of anxiety dreams, try to pinpoint what is causing you the most stress in life and carve out time in your daily routine to relax. You can practice meditation or even start journaling to try and alleviate some of your stress.

Dreams of Being Naked in Public

Dreams around being naked in public are very common and they often represent feelings of anxiety or embarrassment over how others perceive you. If you are constantly worried about how others see you, you may experience this type of anxiety dream. If you want to try and stop this dream, try to let go of the need to be validated by others.

For the meaning behind other types of anxiety dreams, check out the infographic above. It covers 12 additional types of anxiety dreams, the meaning behind them, plus the best way to cope.

Author: Roger

I'm a librarian. I hear music, even when it's not being played. I used to work at a comic book store, and it still informs my life. I won once on JEOPARDY! - ditto.

One thought on “Anxiety dreams and hidden meanings”

  1. I’ve been having anxiety dreams off and on and it makes me irrationally angry – like, I am dealing with existential horrors in my waking life, in sleep I should at least get a respite from that.

    A common one for me lately – has happened enough times it makes me nervous even though I do not really believe in premonitive dreams – is that I’m either driving across a bridge or on a mountain road, and something goes wrong, and suddenly I have driven off the bridge/road and am briefly – like Wile E. Coyote before he realizes he walked off the cliff – suspended in the air, just long enough for me to realize with horror “I am going to die and there is nothing I can do to prevent this” and then I wake up.

    this is a new bad dream. the other ones I have are ones I’ve had off and on over the years – being somewhere at night where there’s no light and I can’t see where I’m going, or realizing I had a whole thing (a child, a pet, a job) I had forgotten about and hadn’t been taking care of…

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