If you are reading this, you probably have flying dreams and want to know what they mean. This comes as no surprise since dreams about flying are pretty common and are in the top 10 most popular dreams.

I remember as a child having a weird flying dream. I was a dog driving a flying ice-cream van and I would race across the street and take off whenever there was danger. Thus, I would just get off the ground and then come back down to earth again and have to face whatever was chasing me.

Clearly, flying dreams come in all guises and offer up various glimpses into our subconscious minds. So let’s explore a few reasons why we have them in the first place.

Why do we have dreams about flying?

Dream researchers believe the key element of dreams about flying rest on a single premise – freedom. Of course, the subject is about flying, but the dream itself represents a wish for release or freedom. This desire for freedom can crop up in any area of our lives. Relationships, work, social circles, family, financial pressures, and so on. Flying symbolises an escape from all these worries.

Interestingly, men have more flying dreams than women. Psychotherapist Jeffrey Sumber thinks this is because men have to deal with more issues that involve freedom. They also don’t talk about their feelings very well. As a result, they are more likely to bury issues which then resurface in dreams.

“There is great pressure to perform at work, at home, in the bedroom, financially, athletically, socially, and more and more, emotionally. Thus, it has become fairly common for many males to confront their feelings about this pressure as well as their relationship to the underlying desire to be free, by working it out in flying dreams.” Jeffrey Sumber

How to Interpret Flying Dreams

Dreams about flying can have many different meanings, all depending on the details in the dream. Were you in an aeroplane when you flew? Or were you flying like Superman? Did you feel happy or scared? How high were you flying? All these factors have to be taken into consideration when analysing your flying dream.

So think about the following statements before you begin:

  • Why did you fly in the first place?
  • What were you flying in?
  • Where were you flying from?
  • What happened before you took flight?
  • How did you feel when you were flying?
  • What happened when you were flying?
  • Did you fly up or down?
  • Did you happen to land and was it an easy landing?
  • Was anyone with you?

One point to think about is that it also matters how you feel about flying in general. If you are afraid of flying in real life and have flying dreams, consider what is going on at present. Are you booked on a flight and are anxious about it? If so then these are likely to be anxiety dreams. If you don’t have a problem with flying, then you can move on to analysing your flying dreams.

What Does Flying Mean and Represent?


If we fly above everyone else, we are literally looking down on people. Your subconscious mind can pick up on your thoughts and translate them into literal dreams. So when you are flying above people in this manner, it can be a sign of an over-inflated self of importance.


For those that were enjoying the flight and watching the scenery below them, flying represents a sense of control. You’ve been challenged before and managed to rise above it and are now in charge of your life.


The opposite of control, for some people, flying dreams are all about escaping the pressures of everyday life. For these people, confronting their problems is too stressful, so they bottle them up instead. As a result, they resurface in flying dreams.


We have already talked about this, but dreams about flying are intrinsically linked with freedom. Flying is symbolic. It shows that nothing is out of reach, that you can achieve anything. It represents endless possibilities and hope.

New perspectives

Speaking of hope, flying dreams also represent new perspectives. When we fly, we literally look down and see the world in a different way. We get a wider view of the world and our dreams are telling us to see the bigger picture.

Spiritual levels

Flying high up is an indication of reaching a higher spiritual level that you might not have realised. You are becoming more attuned to the spiritual world and indeed, you’re finding your own spiritual path in the world.

Types of Flying Dreams

Trouble taking off

If your dream involved trouble taking off, this represents a similar situation in your real life. Are you experiencing problems getting a project off the ground at work? Do you keep coming up against obstacles in your home life? Do you feel you can’t get going or that something is holding you back?

If this sounds like it is making sense, then think about your dream again. Were you alone or with someone? If you were alone, this suggests you lack confidence or self-esteem. It is also a sign of a lack of motivation. If you flew with another person when you had trouble taking off, it signifies this person is holding you back. Consider whether this person is good for you or has your interests at heart.

Scared of Flying

There are a few reasons why you may be scared of flying in your dream but not in real life. The first is a need for control. Consider whether you are trying to control too much in your life. Are there some things that you could delegate to others?

Likewise, it is a sign of imbalance. You feel overwhelmed by responsibility and pressure. Now is the time to examine your work/life balance. Do you spend enough time with your family? Are you working too hard and missing out on important milestones with them? Time to redress the balance.

Being afraid of flying is a sign that you are setting your sights too high. Think about whether you are trying to achieve unobtainable goals. Perhaps you are aiming to impress the wrong people or trying to follow in someone else’s footsteps.

Direction of Flight

The direction of your flight is significant. Flying upwards suggests you are aiming for new goals and you have the confidence to reach them. Furthermore, flying high into the clouds is a sign of a higher level of spirituality. You feel at ease with yourself and have a strong sense of who you are.

Flying downwards indicates a need to delve into our subconscious minds. We know something isn’t quite right and it needs sorting, but we are still burying it deep in our subconscious. However, our dreams are prodding us and reminding us that we can’t move forward until we deal with the issue.

Flying low to the ground symbolises strength and fortitude. You are determined and hardworking. Flying forwards at a steady speed means you look to the future. By contrast, if you were flying backwards, it means you prefer to live in the past. Those who were actually flying the plane feel as if they have a lot of responsibility and cannot relax fully.

Falling while flying

It can be a terrible experience to dream that you are falling while you are flying. If you dream of falling from the sky while you are flying or planes falling out of the sky, it has a very significant meaning.

Your unconscious mind is letting go of preconceived beliefs and notions that no longer fit in with your higher consciousness. This is a major turnaround and usually involves some change in spiritual or political beliefs. So while the dream might seem frightening and terrifying at the time, actually it represents a clearing out of your subconscious mind. It’s a positive sign.

All with all common dreams, the context of the dream is as important as the main subject. So be careful to take all the details into account when you are analysing your dreams.


    1. https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk
    2. https://www.psychologytoday.com

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