Tired Of A Particular Recurring Dream? Here’s An Easy Way To Stop Having It

a sleeping man with his head on a pillow

Recurring dreams are annoying: the same thoughts, the same scenes repeated night after night.

Why can’t I move on? Why can’t I dream about something else?

Merely wanting to move on from the recurring dream and then automatically moving on is not how it works for most people. It’s common to get stuck with the recurring dream.

Recurring dreams over the course of more than two nights aren’t as common in people who keep a dream journal, however. They may have episodic dreams, which aren’t the same thing.

What are recurring dreams?

Recurring dreams are more or less the same dream repeated on two consecutive nights. They can be recurring nightmares, or dreams about a particular person or place.

They’re usually associated with stress.

In considering the format, they can be contrasted with episodic dreams.

An episodic dream is a continuation of the same dream, another episode of the same story.

The episodic dream has parts to it. There are differences and similarities between the parts. It’s not indicative of a stressful time, rather, the subconscious is trying to make a point and the episodic dream is a way to do it.

The recurring dream, on the other hand, has the same dream characters doing the same things.

It could be compared to watching a rerun of the same TV show on consecutive days, reading the same book, or watching the same movie back-to-back.

How to move on from the recurring dream

You can compare the recurring dream to the young child pulling on the hem of his mother’s dress.


The child stops once his mother pauses to listen to what he’s saying.

You need to pause and listen to the dream.

Before you take any medication, write the dream down. That’s the first step to understanding it.

When you finally come to grasp the meaning of your dream, you will be able to interpret the hidden message it contains. With this newfound understanding, you can move forward with clarity and purpose, allowing the dream to guide you in the right direction.

This process of understanding and accepting the dream may not always be easy, but it is necessary for personal growth and success. When the dream has been properly understood and internalized, you’ll be able to move on with newfound confidence and peace of mind, knowing you have the answers you need. It really is that simple, and it’s a beautiful thing.

If the dream recurs again, listen some more, work with the latest edition of the same dream again.

Several studies have found that recurring dreams are more common in periods of stress. This makes sense because dreams are the way that the brain processes information.

If that doesn’t work, and the recurring dream still bothers you (which represents unresolved issues), you may need to seek out professional help. The help could either be seeing a mental health practitioner or someone to help you deal with the issues you’ve identified. For example, if the dream is pointing out a lack of organization, you might get help with that.

My recent recurring dream

I had two nights in a row of the same dream where I was lying in bed with a song playing. It came after working a week of busy night shifts in an emergency department.

The point of the dream was that being able to sleep in my bed at night was a simple pleasure and that I should savor it.

The first night I had the dream, I didn’t allow myself to feel enough gratitude for the night of peace.

Further reading:

Dreams of ex-husband had a pattern: “Barb Sanders”

A pattern with men repeats itself: “Barb Sanders”


James Cobb, RN, MSN, is an emergency department nurse and the founder of the Dream Recovery System. His goal is to provide his readers with simple, actionable ways to improve their health and maximize their quality of life. 


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