The 10 Most Common Dreams and What They Mean.

Yup we’re all unique flowers and snowflakes.  Except when it comes to our dreams.  The top 10 dreams we all have and what they mean.

Skip right to the dream meanings.

In the great tradition of people who bore other people by recounting  their dreams, I … am going to recount my dreams to you. Don’t worry. You’re gonna get the chance to bore everyone else, including me, later.

Since I was young I’ve had nightmares. Lots of them. Death, destruction, chasing, kidnapping, murderous heart pounding dreams. You name the nightmare and I’ve had it. Oftentimes over and over again.

In the past few years I’ve switched over to general anxiety dreams that are still very disturbing but not quite as death filled. I’ve never thought much about these nightmares of mine. They’re just who I am and believe it or not, and this will sound really insane, but … I find them kind of comforting now. I’m sure there’s some sort of subconscious appreciation of how my dreams are dealing with the real life problems that I don’t even know I have.

That’s generally what dreams do. They deal with all the stuff you aren’t dealing with in your waking life because you’re too busy packing lunches and wondering where you hid the vodka.

According to the Encyclopedia of Mental Disorders only a small percentage of people have nightmares on a regular basis. Nightmares aren’t just scary dreams, they’re terrifying.  They can wake you up and the fear can stay with you. Here’s a bit more about them  from the psychological perspective.   About half of all people who suffer with nightmares also suffer from psychiatric disorders. I don’t think I have a psychiatric disorder, at least not one fierce enough to cause nightmares every night so I’m more inclined to go with the Encyclopedia of Mental Disorder’s other rationale for people with nightly nightmares which is the fact that artistic or creative people are at a greater risk of nightmares. Mainly because they have better imaginations.

The past two years have seen an increase in nightmares that revolve around cloudy, scary, turbulent water.  I’m in that water.  Which makes sense because it was almost 2 years ago that the fella ran away from home.  The dreams are me finding my way.  Which is really strange because I’ve never been happier.  I guess the nightmares are doing their job.

Update:  3 years have passed since originally writing this post and the anxiety dreams are gone.  Poof.  Now I mainly seem to dream about buying vegetable seedlings.  Sooooooo not nearly as exciting.

It’s amazing that there are so many of us with such different brains and personalities – yet we all have the same themes in dreams.  Don’t believe me?  Here’s a look at 10 of the most common dreams.  I’m guessing you’ve experienced at least half of them.

If you’re looking for a little more information on dream interpretation get The Dream Dictionary for Dummies.


Being Chased

Being chased in a dream can mean you feel threatened by something in your life or you’re avoiding something.



If the water is calm and clear, you’re at peace obviously.  If the waters are murky or turbulent you’re struggling with equally turbulent emotions.


Teeth falling out

Teeth rotting or falling out in your dreams?  You’re afraid you’re losing control over something.  It’s a symbol of powerlessness.


 You’re super high.  No wait, it means you’re experiencing a newfound sense of freedom or control.

Plus you got a new cape, so …


Exam time/Audition time

The ubiquitous “I have an exam or test and I never went to class and never studied” dream.  The test could be in another language or you can’t get into the exam room … whatever the case it’s a test and you’re anxious about it. This is a classic anxiety dream and usually means  you feel like you’re being judged or evaluated by someone in your life.

I have both exam and audition dreams.  Audition dreams happen more often than test dreams in people who went to performing art schools or studied music and acting.  I have them because of my work in television.

omg i’m naked

You’re feeling exposed or ashamed of something if you dream you’re naked in public.  It can also mean you’re feeling vulnerable.  Or you’re a hippie.



 Dreaming that you die means you actually died while sleeping.  Just kidding.  My 12 year old self couldn’t resist.

Dreaming of your own death signifies starting over.


Cheating dreams are another common anxiety dream.  If you dream your husband/wife is cheating it can mean you’re literally worried about them cheating.  It can also mean you have trust issues with them or are feeling insecure for some reason.


Dreaming about sex means you want to have sex.  Seriously.  Well sometimes it does.

Gay Sex (when you’re not gay) means you’re secretly gay.  No it doesn’t.

Same sex dreams often mean you need to get in touch with your feminine side (if you’re a gal) or your more masculine side (if you’re a dude). So break out the nail polish or start swinging that hammer.


Dreams where you’re falling are also classic anxiety dreams. They usually mean a situation in your life is spiraling out of control. It could be your job or  a relationship.

If you’re falling but aren’t afraid, it means you’re in control of your situation and will easily get through it.

Keep in mind dreams can be interpreted in a few different ways.  Also keep in mind some people think dream interpretation is a bunch of hoodoo.  But if that was the case, then chances are we wouldn’t all be having the same dreams as each other.   A dream may mean one thing for you and another thing for someone else but as long as you know what you’re going through in your real life you should be able to figure out what your dream means to you.  If you don’t know what you’re going through in your own life you’re very, very dead so it doesn’t matter.

If you want to delve a bit further into your dreams (and who doesn’t) I can recommend 2 books to keep on your bedside table.


The Dreamer’s Dictionary was published in 1986 and has sold over a million copies with the majority of hundreds of readers on Amazon giving it a 5 star review.


The second book is The Dream Dictionary for Dummies and it includes not only dream interpretations but also techniques for dreaming more and remembering the dreams you do have.

More recently someone came up with a REALLY good idea.  This dream journal makes keeping track of common themes, recurring dreams and sleep patterns easy. And fun!  Seriously, mark it as a potential Christmas present for any dream obsessed people you know.

It’s now time for you to bore everyone with your dreams!



  1. Roxanne St Amour says:

    I had a terrified dream last night that my 9 year old daughter was kidnapped and the police found her in the bushes what does that mean it’s scared me so much that I woke up in tears

  2. LNU says:

    I walk into the living room. My gf is fingering her cousin’s ass hole. I’m like wtf? She is like what? It’s not like I’m getting off on it. I was like what are you doing?

  3. Star says:

    Um so I’m a teen and basically what happened in my bad dream or nightmare I just had um so this creepy guy and a woman they were strange I was starving it was hot outside the air was hard to breathe the couple or whoever they were or are I looked at my water bottle and i made an inference that it was turning so I opened the door said it’s too hot for you and. I ran down the street and asked the eldery lady I went to and told her what happened to me and asked for.her phone but I woke up and I was thinking about it, couldn’t understand the nightmare or bad dream so I looked it up and read this article. But my living conditions in my house are good which I don’t understand why this happened. I was crying thinking about it outside of my bad dream. I think i was kidnapped but it started in that place but idk how I got there. So may someone please interpret this bad dream for me and tell me what it could be bc it’s bugging me and i got school today.

  4. Hello says:

    My dream was that my Mom was trying to kill me at a shopping mall so i dove into the fountain (Idk why I guess I was trying to hide?). When my head was under water I saw one of my family members floating dead next to me. I tried to scream but then I was suddenly falling.

  5. Daniel Medina says:

    I had a dream that I was being chased by someone I didn’t know but they had the intention to kill me I ran through my neighborhood untill he caoght up with me behind some houses and right as he was about to kill me I got super scared and tried to pause the game. like what? So I pulled up the pause menue and paused and the killer came into view he was an animal crossing character again what but later I realized when I woke up that when he was chasing me I thought the person chasing me was me so myself I’m so confused and creeped out

  6. Sem de voogt says:

    Some man I don’t know has to be sentenced because he created some sort of music video that appears normal to most people but some people see it differently. Somehow I’m there, sitting in a classroom behind him. “I’m going to see it normally” I say to him. The music video starts playing on a screen with a few men singing “ooooh” in a weird melody. Then suddenly I see the men with creepy dog masks on shaking their heads very fast and the “ooooh” sounds like it does in a horror movie. I kinda feel like I’m having a bad trip. I want to scream “STOP! TURN IT OFF” but I can’t and the man just keeps laughing. I woke up whispering “turn it off turn it off” at 2:59 a.m, I saw the time on my phone switch from 2:59 to 3:00, back to 2:59 and then back to 3:00. Scariest night I ever had. This was yesterday and now I’m afraid of going to sleep because I don’t want to dream it again

  7. Angelice vasquez says:

    So I had this dream where I’m in school and my ex friend is with my friends and the reason why we’re not friends walks in I say have a nice day. And then I use the bathroom with my bestfriend. Half of this bathroom is blocked off because it is believed to be haunted. All of a sudden something starts chasing us I get away and lose my bestfriend. Next thing you know I’m seeing teachers talking about the haunted bathroom. And then I’m in the forest I’m the girl from once upon a time and I have a baby with me and this creature tried killing me. It shoots 3 arrows at me missing the baby. I’m falling next thing you know my alarm goes off and I wake up. And I have really bad chest pain even now writing this. But I feel scared now I feel watched.
    Am I crazy?
    What does this mean?

    • Karen says:

      It’s just a nightmare Angelice. The panic from true nightmares and not just scary dreams stays with you after you wake up. It’ll go away. Chest pain is often associated with panic attacks but as always with chest pain be aware and check with a doctor. ~ karen!

  8. Wanda says:

    My dream really cream me out bec it took place in this really old building with secret rooms. I’ve never seen it b4 in my life yet I’ve dreamed about it plenty of times b4. It was in a neighborhood I’ve never been in yet I’ve dreamed about it plenty of times b4. I could handle all that until my dream self realized my real self was sleeping & that she was only a dream. My dream self ran up a hill & reached out her phone 2 take pictures of a dead dear then my dream self tried to call my real world. She tried to call my mom who lives in a different state than me, she wanted to tell her to call me and wake me up but the cellphone was blank as it was a dream phone looking exactly like my real phone. Then she ran up to my dream husband who looked just like my actual husband & told him that she wasn’t real & that he needed 2 wake the real me up so she took him n2 this room where another dream me was sleeping in a wedding dress, the one I was actually married in. He tapped my leg & told me 2 wake up & the other dream me woke up. I looked down & noticed I was in my wedding gown so I said, “Oh man, I’m still asleep. ” I think the dream me in my wedding gown was the gate keeper of my wake & sleep state bec when the other dream me started yelling wake up or we will be stuck in this room 4 ever, the dream me said, “Okay, it’s time 4 u 2 wake up. Wake up now. ” And she was calm about it & then the actual real me woke up. I began 2 believe that the dream me realizing she was a dream had 2 go through the gate keeper dream me 2 wake the real me up? Can anyone make any sense of this?

  9. Sherry Hoffman says:

    When I was little I was scared of dolles
    They would hurt me some time in my dreams. Had those dreams until 4 untell 12 years old then those dreams stopped. Then still dream about dinosaurs and that means flashraptors still dream about them it suck
    I think my ded dog is hunting me in my dreams sometimes tuning into different dogs a couple different dogs weard. Then turning into a cat ghost my dog did in my dream . Then the dog was a black taller dog I pet her she turned bad to her regular self as a dog she is a small dog of core .

  10. Solomon says:

    So what does it mean if i have a dream I’m in a hospital dicter said my mom is dead they wrote time of death they then showed cause of death was a certain part of her heart so then dream changes to where I’m riding home with my moms boyfriend who I hate because he is mean he drops me off on side of road then dream changes to where I’m in this woman’s house who is a person I don’t know and I’m crying and then I was told its alright Basicly I was calmed down by the woman I didn’t know and then the woman said I’m gonna kill him I said who and she said the name of the guy who was my moms boyfriend who dropped me off on side of road and then I woke up can someone tell me what this means it was way to detailed

  11. Shoot Karen!
    Don’t know how I missed this post.
    Love it!
    Had a dream a few nights ago that I had a fling with Robert Redford… Hummm, well I hope it’s a sign of things to come.

  12. DAYALAN says:


  13. milan says:

    i am 17 end i am from serbia and my english is bad , i dreamt last night of a men beside some house end ima old like 50 in england i think end then like a movie starts in my head and it was so real like collors werw green end evrzthing was so realn end it was like a movi in my head there was a boy with blue heir en and black guy end an gun end like in a dream a cinda desided to stop it and i wake up what does it mean help

  14. Morriah says:

    I had a dream I was sleeping and a lady cut my head of Then i was in the after life it wasn’t like I expected just like the real world just easier unlike everyone eles in the after life I was fading/see threw. That was. Cause I was not yet dead urban was dreaming and the ppl said it was a sign I was gonna die later that day at 6:00pm in perticuler a at accident

  15. nathan krueger says:

    i have had a dream in past being eaten by group of wolves and woke up freightened because me seing self guts and being eaten

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