Jun 05, 2017 12:14PM ● Published by Neighbors Magazines
By Sue Nicholson
It’s pitch black. A heavy fog hangs in the night air; the kind that you can cut with a knife. Crunch! Swish! The sound of overly dry leaves being crushed by something much larger than yourself is approaching. The machine-like rhythm of steps sends the hairs on your neck to full attention, and some part of you decides that it’s a good idea to run. It takes a minute for your feet to get the message, and seemingly an eternity passes before you are able to gain the momentum required to move forward. You try to glance behind you, but the uneven ground demands your full attention. The sounds are getting louder, and your fear is that you cannot move fast enough. What nature of man or beast is upon you, and why?! You think, “How did I even get here? A few minutes ago, I was sitting at home, watching a movie with a few good friends. Where are they now?” Your lungs are burning now from running at full speed. You start to feel like you are running, but not covering very much ground. The smell of scorched hair fills the air, and you are pretty sure you are not on fire. You glance behind you only to see a figure that is so terrifying that it cannot be explained. Now you feel your life is in danger. In your attempt to run faster, you realize your feet can no longer move, as if they are encased in cement. Any second now, this creature will be upon you, and you have no way to control what happens next. You let out a terrified scream…and wake yourself up.
Good Morning! Sun’s up to welcome a new day. What??? In your fear, and disorientation, you realize it was just a bad dream. Weird! Your pulse is still racing, there is sweat on your brow, and even a few tears in your eyes, remnants of the fear you experienced during your last moments on earth…or so you thought. It seemed so real, so terrifying. Why wouldn’t your feet move? You should be able to will yourself to do anything in the confines of your brain. They say there are lessons to be learned through dreams, as you are somehow working out difficult decisions, or stressful life situations. Scientists tell us that we are actually learning while our brains are resting, and recharging.
For whatever reason, we lack the ability control our actions in a dream state. Yet, it is fascinating to think that we are able to move through time, space, and events like some kind of alien form…watching things unfold, but unable to change outcomes.
Have you figured out where I’m heading with all of this? Well, first off, appreciate the power of your imagination, as well as your ability to work through tough decisions during a good night’s rest. And, marvel at your body’s ability to repair and restore itself at a cellular level during sleep.
Next, embrace the power and flexibility of your mind. Know that you can alter your decisions, attitudes, and behaviors whenever you please. It’s called free-will. While we may lack control during our dream states, self-control is fully functional during our waking hours. You can choose your path, change your course, and set your sites on just about anything. Just as no two people will have the same dream, no two people will live out their lives that same way.
Your future is yours, and yours alone. What decisions will you make, what chances will you take, and what course will dictate happy and fulfilling outcomes? You can control life’s distractions, and focus on valued people, things, and ideas. Set a course, jump in with both feet, run, walk, or dance- whatever gets you moving. And, leave room for a good night’s sleep. You’re going to need it!
Suzanne Nicholson is advanced practice nurse, certified health coach, and founder of Ideal You Health & Wellness, LLC. She has lived and worked in the surrounding communities for the past 25 years, and has a strong commitment to empowering others to strive for good health. She also has a vision for improving, and enhancing the delivery of healthcare now and in to the future.