Welcome back to our ‘Understanding Dreams’ series, where we look at the most common dream themes and explain what they mean for us and our waking lives. Last time, we discussed flying dreams, and this week we look at dreams about running away or being chased.
Dreams in which you are being chased, or are running away from something threatening, are more common in women, but men often experience them too.
They are very common dreams and can signal a situation in your waking life that is causing you stress or anxiety.
Running dreams can take on many different forms;
- you could be running from a dangerous animal,
- from a person who means you harm,
- or you could be being chased by something or somebody you can’t actually see.
All of these are symbols for something in your waking life that is worrying you.
If you’re running away from something or somebody in your dream, it is very likely that you are trying hard to avoid something in your waking life.
The thing you’re running from in your dream could be a literal representation of whatever you’re avoiding, or it could be a metaphor, making it harder to understand what is bothering you
Dreams about running away from somebody you know
If you are being chased by a person that you know, it could signify that you are currently avoiding a difficult or awkward situation with that person in real life.
Did you have an argument with them, or are you struggling to have an awkward conversation?
Running away from your boss
If you’re running away from your boss, it could signify that you are struggling with a stressful situation in the workplace.
- Maybe you made a mistake that got you in trouble?
- Perhaps you had a disagreement with your boss over something and now things are awkward?
- It could also mean that you are avoiding bringing up a difficult subject, such as a promotion or pay rise.
If nothing specific about your boss springs to mind, this dream could simply mean that you’re not happy in your current work situation; perhaps you’re feeling stressed or under pressure or feel that you’re failing at a particular task.
The best way to stop these dreams is to sit down with your boss and have a frank and open conversation about how things are going, and asking for help if you need it.
Running away from a friend or family member
- Perhaps you recently had an argument with them,
- or anticipating one soon and are avoiding them?
- Or maybe you’re avoiding a conversation you need to have with this person, as you’re worried about their reaction?
If the person you’re running from is a friend or a family member, there is a good chance that you are currently having difficulties in your relationship with this person in your daily life.
Running away from a partner
- It could be because you’re bored or feel like you’re not compatible,
- or it could symbolise a more serious feeling of discomfort or even fear of that person, and your subconscious mind is telling you that you need to escape the situation.
If you’re running from a romantic partner, there is a strong possibility that you feel trapped or unhappy in your relationship.
Running from the unknown
If you don’t recognise the person or thing you’re running from, it could be a metaphor for a wider issue in your life that you’re trying to avoid or escape.
- It could be an animal you’re scared of,
- or a monster,
- or simply a person whose face you don’t know, or can’t see.
These things represent a part of your life that you’re struggling with and are running away from dealing with.
Maybe you’re experiencing money problems, or are struggling with your health?
These dreams reflect how you deal with these problems in real life; they show that instead of dealing with your problems, you instead bury your head in the sand and avoid them altogether.
What should you do about these dreams?
An important thing to look out for if you dream about running away is the distance between you and the person or thing that is chasing you. If they are gaining on you, it is a strong indication that the situation you are avoiding in your life is catching up to you, and that it will overtake and likely overwhelm you soon if you’re not careful.
The best thing to do if you’re dealing with dreams about being chased is to turn around and face your problem head on.
Making the decision to face the problem gives you the power to deal with it on your own terms and carries less risk of it getting out of hand and out of your control.
If you’re avoiding a person, bite the bullet and have the conversation with them. The chances are that it will go much better than you have led yourself to believe.
If you’re avoiding a bigger problem, relating to finances or health, or something else, then seek the support of your loved ones and the help of professionals.
It’s better to deal with the problem than let it build up and get worse over time.