Something in your life is creating a fear-based response to a threat. That threat may be real or imagined. When a person feels exposed at a very primal level, the built-in survival mechanism of the fight-or-flight response occurs. You may be running in terror without knowing that the secret enemy you are running from is yourself.
If you do not know your assailant, it may simply be you trying to catch up to you with something important that, if embraced, would allow you to feel more complete.
If you know who is chasing you, the person may have more to offer you if you let him or her catch you. Even if being caught ends in being killed, that death could be a symbolic transformation of such significance as to be the very thing needed to bring your greatest heart’s desires into reality. That is, of course, if you have the courage to stop running and turn around. Sometimes it is part of human nature to be afraid of success, and a dream of being chased is alerting you to stop running from your own magnificence.
Universal Landscape: Fear-based response to threat.
Dreaming Lens: Did you see your pursuer? Did you know the pursuer? Was there more than one? Were you being chased by a person or something inhuman? Were you in real danger, or were you making an assumption of danger based on the heightened anxiety? Did you elude your pursuer, or did he/she/it catch up with you?
Personal Focus: When a person feels threatened at a very primal level, the built-in survival mechanism of the fight or flight response occurs. While most people’s routine lives do not provide them with chances to test how they might react to such a threat, the dream world is filled with many such opportunities. Being chased is perhaps the most common dream image shared by all people across cultures and history.
Since this is a frequent dream experience, yet an infrequent life experience, it is important to recognize that the unconscious mind is using a very intense image to express waking life stressors that are not as life threatening as the dreams they provoke. The mind is very economical—it will use the fantastical experience of surviving danger in order to allow us to wake up the next day, ready to face the mundane challenges that may be troubling us. The fact that these are often recurring dreams further illustrates their capacity to balance out the unconscious fears and anxieties that we accumulate during the day. Look to where you may be feeling threatened or anxious in your life when this dream appears.
There is an alternate perspective that is important to consider when dreaming of being chased. Sometimes, it is part of human nature to be afraid of success. This unconscious sabotage can be very difficult to identify. You may be running in terror without knowing that the secret enemy you are running from is yourself. If you do not know your assailant, it may simply be that someone is trying to catch up to you with something important that, if embraced, would allow you to feel more complete. If you know who chases you, the person may have more to offer you if you let him/her catch you. Even if being caught ends in being killed, that death could be a symbolic transformation of such significance as to be the very thing needed to bring your greatest heart’s desires into reality. That is, of course, if you have the courage to stop running and turn around.
This is another common dream based on fear and anxiety. If you find yourself being chased by something or someone, whether known to you or not, then you are probably feeling vulnerable in your waking life. You could be under pressure and feel that time is running out, or you are actually avoiding a problem or situation and trying to run away from it. Ask yourself, what do I fear? What am I trying to avoid? You might have already put some distance between yourself and the thing that is causing you anxiety, but if the pursuer in your dreams catches up, then this suggests you will eventually meet matters head on and that this is the only way to rectify the situation.
If you are the one doing the chasing, this denotes an ambitious personality, someone with drive who will not take no for answer. There is still a sense of pressure – in this case you desperately want to reach your goal and panic may be setting in. Take a deep breath and accept that sometimes you cannot force matters, you simply have to go with the flow and let life lead you in new and exciting directions.
The way we respond to anxiety and pressure in real life is typically manifested as a chase dream. Often in these dream scenarios, you are being pursued by some attacker who wants to hurt or possibly kill you. You may be running away, hiding, or trying to outwit your pursuer. Chase dreams may represent your way of coping with fears, stress or various situations in your waking life.
Instead of confronting the situation, you are running away and avoiding it. Ask yourself, who is the one chasing you, and you may gain some understanding and insight on the source of your fears. The dream could also indicate that you are refusing to acknowledge a certain viewpoint or idea. On the other hand, the pursuer or attacker who is chasing you in your dream may represent a part of yourself. Your own feelings of anger, jealousy, fear, and possibly love, can assume the appearance of a threatening figure. You may be projecting these feelings onto the unknown chaser and your dream is calling your attention to your own self-destructive actions. A more direct analysis of chase dreams is that they reflect the simple fear of being attacked. Media hype and overexposure play on this fear and magnify our level of risk.
Dreams of being chased are a natural response to stress. It could be events are catching up with you and you’re running to keep ahead of the game.
• Or you’re running away from something literal in your life or perhaps an emotional or psychological issue. Revisit the dream and face what’s chasing you.
• By accepting who you are, exactly as you are, right now will help you make real progress towards your future and relieve some of the stress.