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Our Personal Metaphors

Our Personal Metaphors

Today, I thought I would talk about one of my favourite therapeutic subjects, metaphors. However, unlike the metaphors I generally teach my students, I would like to look at how dreams are our personal metaphors. Like with many of these posts I will use my personal experience as an example.

When I dream, or shall I say, when I recall my dreams they tend to be very pedestrian. No hidden meanings, no subtlety just really clear message with an obvious scenario laid out. However, last night, not only did I dream, but my dream was disturbing and even violent. This is something that is very unusual for me.

When I woke, rather distressed, I wondered why I had such an unpleasant dream. As I became more conscious, the meaning of the dream became very clear to me. It was a metaphoric representation of an issue that I am personally working through at the moment. The representation was unpleasant, but the issue I am working on is very unpleasant for me.

Dream analysis is not something I do a lot of in my therapeutic work. However, this episode made me think that one can look at dreams as personal metaphors. Metaphors are how we make sense of the world around us, so why should we not unconsciously create metaphors to help us understand ourselves.

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