Why do we scare ourselves in our dreams? This man still suffers from anxiety and fear of flying almost thirty years after he had this repetitive childhood nightmare. Could we be scaring ourselves because we misperceive the intent of our dream? When we wake up to what we are saying to ourselves will we no longer be scared?
What is a life issue that you are dealing with now in your life?
Fear of flying to Madrid!
Tell me a dream you remember. It can be an old one, a repetitive dream, a nightmare, or one that you’re sure you understand.
When I was a child I dreamt of a wolf wanting to eat me. I was always trying to run away from him. I would wake up screaming as he was about to swallow me.
Why do you think that you had this dream?
I have no idea. I don’t think I had any fears at that age. I was just a regular young boy, enjoying life. My fears started with heart disease when I was sixteen.
If it were playing at a theater, what name would be on the marquee?
The Big, Bad Mean Wolf and the Nice, Friendly, Innocent Little Boy!!!!
These are the characters in the dream…
Me and the wolf!
If one character had something especially important to tell you, what would it be?
Wolf, would you please tell me about yourself and what you are doing?
I look like a big mean wolf! I have big teeth! I like eating little children!
What do you like most about yourself? What are your strengths?
That I’m so strong! I’m not scared of anything! That feels good!
What do you dislike most about yourself? Do you have weaknesses? What are they?
I don’t dislike anything about me! I don’t have any weaknesses! It’s a little frustrating that I never succeed, but I know I’ll always come back, and some day I’ll make it!
Wolf, you are in Toby’s life experience, correct? He created you, right? Wolf, what aspect of Toby do you represent or most closely personify?
I don’t ever get scared. I’m powerful. I don’t give up!
Wolf, if you could be anywhere you wanted to be and take any form you desired, would you change? If so, how?
I like me. I want to stay the same.
(Continue, answering as the transformed object, if it chose to change.)
(Character), how would you score yourself 0-10, in confidence, compassion, wisdom, acceptance, peace of mind, and witnessing? Why?
Wisdom: 10 I’ve seen so many kids. I appear in a lot of nightmares of kids all over the world. I’m international! I’m not running a local business! There’s some wolves working in kid’s dreams in Phoenix too!
Inner Peace: 10
Witnessing: 8 Because I do get pissed when I try to catch a kid and I don’t! But usually I’m good at witnessing.
Wolf, if you scored tens in all six of these qualities, would you be different? If so, how?
A ten in compassion would be pretty hard on my business. I never catch a kid, so it’s hard to be a ten in witnessing….
How would Toby’s life be different if he naturally scored like you do in all six of these qualities all the time?
He’s like the total opposite to me. He wouldn’t be scared of anything. All of his problems he has now would be solved right away. I’d have to find other places to work…If I lose him, there are other customers….
If you could live Toby’s life for him, how would you live it differently?
When he is afraid or scared or too soft or too nice to people. I would be stronger. Then Toby wouldn’t be afraid. He wouldn’t be afraid of not being a nice guy. He wouldn’t be avoid confrontations.
If you could live Toby’s waking life for him today, would you handle his life issue differently? If so, how?
I would fly to Madrid! It wouldn’t bother me! Regarding that asshole from his business parter, Toby has to be with on the flight and while he’s there. I think I’d try to eat him. Try to ignore him and do his own stuff…
What three life issues would you focus on if you were in charge of his life?
I would focus on fighting against the fears, on the good things, the quality time, spending time with his father… on the good things…
In what life situations would it be most beneficial for Toby to imagine that he is you and act as you would?
In every situation where he’s scared or trying to avoid a confrontation. Hopefully he could take the best that I can offer.
Character, do you do drama? If not, why not?
No! I’ve got no time for it!
What is your secret for staying out of drama?
I just don’t let the drama touch me. I don’t know how. My lifetime is too precious for me to spend it with senseless drama.
Why do you think that you are in Toby’s life?
I came into his life when he was a boy because I wanted him to become more like me back then. If he could have heard me and been more like me, all his fears would not have had a chance to grow as they did through his life.
How is Toby most likely to ignore what you are saying to him?
It’s a concentration thing. It’s a fight against those fears.
What would you recommend that he do about that?
I would kick his ass! Say, “Come on! Don’t be so weak!”
I think Toby had this dream because
it’s normal that kids have nightmares….
What have you heard yourself say?
I heard that I should fight against my fears. I have something inside of me that is stronger than my fears. I should believe in it and not be the victim. I should not avoid confrontations so much in my life.
If this experience were a wake-up call from the most central part of who you are, what do you think it would be saying to you?
Come on! Stand up! Fight!
How would the world be different if every child had the tools to interview their dream characters? How would they be different if they learned to listen to their fears instead of running from them, fighting them, or shutting them out? Now we have the tools, and you have a method to make a huge difference to the kids you know!