Our work lives spilling into our dreams isn’t a new phenomenon, but it is something that’s been affecting UK employees more than usual while working from home, according to new research.
- During lockdown, 75% of all work-based dreams are reported to be a nightmare.
- 1 in 5 admit to wanting to quit their job following a workplace dream.
- Being unprepared revealed as the most common dream theme.
The top 5 most common work-related dream themes
- You’re unprepared for a task – 17%
- Just a regular day at work – 17%
- You never arrive or get lost at work – 15%
- You’re trapped at work – 11%
- You show up late for work – 11%
The top work-related characters and themes featured in these dreams
- Co-workers – 47%)
- Managers (11%) and directors – 12%
- Clients and customers – 22%
- Romance with a coworker or manager – 11% and 13% respectively
“This, alongside the threat of ourselves or loved ones contracting the Coronavirus all contribute to anxiousness and worry playing out in our dream states.”“Dreaming provides us with the space and time to process and play out our subconscious fears, to problem-solve and work through our subconscious issues,” she says.
How to manage weird work dreams from ruining your sleepDr Daly shares four tips to help manage work from spilling into your dreams.
BoundariesOne of the things that can support us psychologically to switch off from work-mode is to make clear delineations between work and non-work. Setting clear boundaries is one way in which to do this. Constructing realistic, workable, weekly, timetables with regular as-it-were ‘clocking-in’ and ‘out’ times can facilitate this.
Self-careWe lead busy lives so it is essential that when work is finished for the day, we do something for ourselves. It is important to actively shift our attention away from thinking about work by doing other things, such as, taking some exercise, walking the dog, knitting, reading, or just taking a bath.
Limit technological devicesIn the modern age our mobile devices are often never more than a short arm stretch away. Turning mobile phones/lap-tops off and setting a cut-off point after which we do not look at/respond to emails/messages – particularly in the hours leading up to going to bed is more likely to result in better sleep quality.
Prompt your dreamsReading a book or spending some time thinking about a particular pleasant memory or event that you would like to revisit in your dream is more likely to result in desired dreams. Forming a mental image or looking at photographs are other ways of potentially shaping the content of your dream.
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