When you think about a recent dream you had, you may recall some wondrous experiences. Maybe you heard mesmerizing music, felt like you were flying, or saw intriguing symbols that sparked your curiosity. Perhaps you perceived a creative idea or a message of guidance, healing, or encouragement. The wonder you experience in dreams while you’re sleeping can lead you to awe in your waking life, if you try to learn from your dreams.

You’re able to be focused and open to inspiration when you’re sleeping, because you’re free from the stress and distractions in your waking life. The relaxed and curious state of your mind while you dream can help you perceive and learn from wonder. Your dreams may seem random and difficult to understand when you first reflect on them. But as you ponder your dreams, you’ll often notice awe-inspiring moments that can serve as clues to deeper messages within those dreams. The lifelong learning chapter of my book Wake Up to Wonder describes many ways to learn from dreams, such as finding encouragement, coming up with a creative idea or a way to solve a problem, receiving healing, and discovering guidance for making a decision.

Once you discover wonder while you’re asleep, you can keep learning from it while you’re awake. That inspiration can help you make positive change happen in your life. The first step is discovering wonder in your dreams. Here’s how to do so:

  • Record dream details soon after you wake up. As soon as you awaken from a dream, record whatever information you can recall about it. Keep a journal, audio recorder, or simply a pen and paper by your bedside to make it easy to record the details from your dreams. Make a note of what you saw and heard during your dream, as well as what emotions you felt. Pay attention to whether or not you had a recurring dream – and if so, which parts of your dream were repeated from previous dreams.
  • Study what you’ve recorded and look for patterns. What connections do you notice? Which details have symbolic meaning – either a personal meaning for you, or a universal meaning? Symbols such as colors, numbers, and shapes can be clues to interpret the meaning of your dreams. Common types of dreams often represent certain types of messages, according to dream dictionaries. Consider what messages, if any, you received in your dreams. Sometimes your dreams are simply the result of your mind processing your thoughts and emotions. At other times, though, your dreams deliver messages from beyond yourself. You may receive a dream message from a loved one who has passed away, or even a message from God or an angel – if you’re open to it.
  • Seek deeper understanding through prayer and meditation. Throughout history, many people have used prayer and meditation as tools to discover spiritual insights from dreams. Consider praying and meditating about your dreams to help deepen your understanding. Even brief spiritual practices – such as breath prayers – can help you uncover more meaning from your dreams. As you seek to learn from your dreams with a clear mind and an open heart, you can perceive wisdom that clarifies their purpose. Then you can respond to the messages in your dreams by taking action in your waking life.

Every dream you experience is a gift that can help you experience more awe in your life. So, pay close attention to your dreams, and enjoy learning from the wonder you discover!