Dreams are an incredibly effective tool for achieving our life goals. They allow us to look within rather than to outside “authorities” for guidance and answers.  To tap into dream wisdom, follow my four-point R.U.L.E.–Remember, Understand, Listen to, and Express your dreams. Adopted from “Dreams and the Wisdom Within,” this guide will empower your dream awareness.


To recall your dreams, note what you recollect in a journal. Some dreamers keep an audio recorder by the bed and transcribe the dreams later. Include events of the day in your journal. Include your thoughts about what the dreams mean. Keeping a written journal of your dreams stimulates more dreaming. Chronicling even snippets helps you remember more of the dream. Date and title your dreams.

If you have difficulty eliciting dreams before going to sleep, 
ask to remember your dreams.


Take time to study the implication of your dreams. Sometimes the  significance is obvious; sometimes it will manifest later. Understanding  what the dream means is challenging, but engaging with the visual and verbal content is worthwhile.

Try interpreting your dreams without a dictionary. Symbols may mean something to you distinct from connotations in a dream dictionary. Develop your own definitions; discern nuances.

Turn to a dream dictionary for standard definitions and additional ideas. A dream dictionary is helpful for insights about universal symbols. A spiritually-oriented book for understanding dreams is Dream Dictionary by Tony Crisp.

Notice specifics of the symbol. Is the water dirty? What type of car is it? Are the headlights on or off? Details carry significance.

Examine word plays, verbal-visual images, and the movie-like quality of the dream. What is the dream conveying? Look for puns, especially of names. Someone may appear whose name is Rose. What flowering does she represent? A phrase such as “pick her up” might remind you to meet the person or it might mean emotionally support her.


Look at the dream in the context of your life—the issues or the concerns occupying your time and thoughts.

A woman had a recurring dream she lost her purse, that is, she had lost her identity. Notice the details. Her purse was lost, not stolen. What happened to the bag containing her Social Security card, driver’s license, and credit cards? Did she lose her identity because of a job or a relationship? Where? When? How can she find or replace it?


Incorporate the dream into your life. Do your dreams guide you in a new direction or offer a perspective beyond what your five senses tell you? A dream recurs until you understand and act on it. How can you express the meaning of the dream to make a positive difference in your life and in the world?

Last winter, I was struggling with plans for a Dream Salon several months later in a distant city. I had just fallen on the ice and broken my wrist. Everything about the event was an enormous effort–where to hold the gathering, who to invite and how. Every detail loomed large. One Sunday morning in the midst of my self-imposed angst, I dreamt of two playing cards: a seven of clubs and a three of clubs.

As I scribbled the quandary in my journal, I realized what the dream was telling me: That day, send out the seven save-the-date invitations to people who had attended a previous dream-sharing event in the northern Ohio city and send a save-the-date to three other people I knew personally in the area. That was it for the day. The dream was comforting me: Stop worrying about all of it. Do one simple step today, another single, simple step the next. Soon, planning for the project would be complete.

Follow this four-part rule, and experience the power of dreams. Let me know if you have any questions or stories to share.

Want to dive more into the world of dream meanings? Check out more of #DreamOn from Joyce HERE!

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