Book reveals the hidden meaning behind your dreams

What your dreams REALLY mean: Spiritual expert reveals the symbolic significance of being late, flying and someone dying (and why you shouldn’t worry about being unfaithful)

  • The Dream Decoder Journal gives the hidden meaning behind your dreams
  • Covers everything from nudity to much darker themes like death and drowning
  • Dreaming of flying means your experiencing a high point in your real life 
  • Sex dreams are not so much about the act itself, but greater need for connection

Ever wonder what it means when you dream you’re flying? A spiritual expert believes she has unlocked the answer to this and more common symbolism – and shares her knowledge in a new book.

The Dream Decoder Journal written by UK best selling author Theresa Cheung and released next week, illuminates the meanings behind images that commonly appear in dreams including infidelity, falling and money. 

It is believed that dreams happens because the brain is still active while we sleep. Some dreams are believed to be autobiographic, meaning they related to your life experiences and their effect on your psyche – the human soul. 

Here, FEMAIL has selected ten of the most common dreams and their explanations, according to the book. 


The Dream Decoder Journal, by Theresa Cheung and illustrated by Harriet Lee-Merrion, offers explanations for some of the most common dream themes. Running late for an event holds several meanings which denotes some difficulties dealing some aspect of your life, the book explains

Running late for an event holds several meanings which denotes some difficulties dealing some aspect of your life, the book explains.

It can manifest a lack of confidence or self-esteem, or an impossibility to deal with practical matters.

‘The most common manifestation is missing a flight or a train – a classic symbol of feeling overwhelmed or not up to the challenge of a task,’ Theresa Cheung writes.

Being late can also mean you’re experiencing a loss of control, particularly in meeting deadlines or time constraints, she adds. 

‘Turning up late in general may be an alert suggesting you need to be more organised and disciplined,’ she says. 

In others cases, a dream about tardiness can be a nudge to ‘make you face your fears and deal with a situation you’ve been avoiding.’ It can also mean you regret not taking some opportunities. 


Dreaming of being naked usually relates to your emotions. It suggests you want to be transparent about what you feel. If people laugh at you for being naked, it suggests you’re afraid of being ridiculed for being yourself 

Being naked or partially nude in your dream indicates you’re feeling at your most vulnerable.

‘Perhaps you’re hiding something or not being true to who you really are,’ Theresa writes.

‘Or you might be trying hard to impress but afraid you’ll cause disappointment,’ she adds. 

In other cases, dreaming of being nude can be the manifestation of your will to be transparent and honest, in tandem with the fear or being ridiculed for it.

You need to pay attention to how people react to your nudity in your dream in order to draw further meaning.

‘If you don’t feel embarrassed, perhaps you’re being encouraged to be proud of who you are or the way you think or act. If people don’t notice, perhaps there’s no need to worry,’ Theresa says.


An accident, such as a fall, can be the subconscious way of letting you know something needs your attention in waking life. It can also mean vigilance is required

Car crashes, falls or plane accidents are a warning to be alert to some potential danger.

‘Your unconscious has noticed and wants to draw attention to, something you aren’t alert to in waking life,’ Theresa explains. 

‘This doesn’t mean you’re going to have an accident, just that greater vigilance is required if you’re to reach your goals without some kind of mischance, which may occur at the emotional level,’ she adds.

Another meaning could be that you need to face an issue you’ve been avoiding, or that your values are in conflict with others.

It also can mean you are in danger of losing control.


Sexual dreams often indicate your yearning for more emotional intimacy, rather than the act itself 

Dreaming about romps is not about the physical act itself. It’s about the intimacy, and suggests a need to connect on a deeper level.

‘This may include a craving for more physical closeness, but the main emphasis is likely to be emotional,’ Theresa writes. 

Sex dreams can also represent a need for psychological growth or self-discovery.

‘The identity of your sex partner in the dream is crucial to the meaning, since they represent aspects of yourself you need to open up or integrate,’ Theresa explains.

‘You don’t actually want to sleep with their – there may just be something about them you admire or can learn from,’ she adds. 

She also explains that anything associated with sex in dreams can indicate a hunger for greater excitement or adventure.


How you deal with money in dreams can be a reflection of your emotional stability. Spending might means you’re feeling emotionally generous. Finding some meaning you can learn some valuable thing about yourself 

Whether it’s by cash or card, dreaming of money can be a symbol of your own emotional security. It can also stand for the influence you feel you have over other people.

‘Giving money away or spending suggests a wish to be more generous or outgoing,’ Theresa writes in the Dream Decoder Journal.

‘Receiving money indicates you need to accept or ask for emotional support,’ she adds. 

Finding money can suggest there’s something valuable you need to learn about yourself. Losing money is a symbol for missing out on an opportunity.


Death are not an omen something grim is about to happen. It usually usually means you’re ready to take on a new chapter of your life 

Often misinterpreted, death dreams are not an omen that you or a close one are about to die.

‘Dreams about death are typically a sign of positive change, of shedding the past and moving forward,’ Theresa writes. 

Dying in a dream suggest inner growth, not something grim.

If a love ones or someone you know dies in your dream, it may suggest your relationships with this person is evolving.

‘Alternatively, the person who dies may represent an aspect of yourself that needs to be transformed: one phase needs to end and a new one be started,’ Theresa explains. 

If the one dying is a stranger, it can suggest you feel disconnected from your life and need to inspect this further. 


Fire can indicate you’re experiencing passionate emotions in your waking life. If the fire can’t be control, it can suggest there’s some ‘fires’ you need to put out before it’s too late

Fire or fire-related occurrences, (like volcanoes or fireworks) can indicate you’re experiencing passionate emotions in your waking life.

‘Fire is purifying, illuminating and the source of life, so it could suggest personal transformation or enlightenment,’ Theresa says. 

However, if you feel threatened or are injured in your dream, perhaps you’re putting yourself at risk (playing with fire), she adds. 

Theresa explains that dreaming of fire can also mean something urgently needs your attention, cannot be avoided, and might be destructive to you or your life.

‘If you burn alive in a dream, maybe you’re being overambitious or too driven, or too eager to impress,’ she writes. 

It may be a suggestion to slow down and avoid a professional burnout as well.

Theresa also adds that if a firefighter or extinguisher appears in your dream, it might suggest you’re learning to control your emotions.


Birds are usually a positive symbols in dreams. They represent freedom and joy, and hopes and aspirations taking flight 

Seeing a bird or a flock of birds in a dream is usually a good sign. They are a symbol of freedom and joy as well as hopes and aspirations taking flight.

The height at which the bird is flying as well as the type of bird you see can be significant.

‘Eagles, hawks, falcons and many other predatory birds might appear threatening, reflecting insecurity – although eagles can also represent power and pride,’ Theresa says.

‘Song birds can suggest inspiration, hope, a fresh start. The owl is traditionally a creature of wisdom and insight,’ she adds.  

An injured bird might indicate you need to nurture yourself 

Dreaming of flowers is a symbol of comfort, beauty, kindness, love or joy. They could represent your capacity for faith or compassion.

‘Color symbolism may operate: white denotes purity, blue, calm, purple, adventure ; pink, tenderness ; orange, creativity ; and yellow, playfulness,’ Theresa writes. 

Different types of flowers bear different meanings. For instance, daisies may suggest friendship, while dandelions often represent childhood. 


Dreaming of cheating on a partner does not mean you want to cheat in real life. It means, however, that you’re yearning some something that’s lacking in your relationship

Good news: Just because you dream about cheating doesn’t mean you’ll cheat in real life, Theresa says. However, it might still mean something is going on with your relationship.

‘They are often an indication that your relationship needs aren’t being met in some way,’ Theresa writes. 

‘You might be feeling neglected or fearful your partner may abandon or betray you.’

‘Contrary to the popular belief, this is not a wish fulfillment dream: sleeping with someone else probably means there’s some aspect of their personality you need to assimilate within yourself,’ she adds. 

In other words, you don’t want to be with them, you want to be them.

Cheating with a stranger? Theresa writes that there might be something missing in your relations or your life in general, such as excitement. 


Flying is almost always seen as a positive symbol, ‘ Theresa writes. Pay attention to the direction you’re flying in – upwards or downwards – for further meaning 

Flying is almost always seen as a positive symbol, ‘ Theresa writes.

‘It’s a celebration of something happening in you waking life that gives you (or will soon give you) a high.

‘Perhaps you feel you’ve achieved or are on the brink of achieving, something significant,’ she adds .  

It can relate to relationships, a professional success or personal projects. It can also come from a sense of freedom. 

Theresa explains in the book that the direction in which you fly is also significant.  

‘Pay attention to the direction you’re flying in: upwards, or flying high, suggests spiritual growth or worldly ambition. Downwards, or flying low to the ground, suggests newfound determination and strength.

‘Flying backwards suggests happy memories,’ she adds. 

Dream Decoder Journal, written by Theresa Cheung and illustrated by Harriet Lee-Merrion, published by Laurence King on 17 August

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