Fish Out Of Water Dream Meaning

Fish Out Of Water Dream Meaning

Fish Out Of Water Dream Meaning

I’m not going to deny that dreams can be confusing, colorful, scary, or simply weird, don't you think?  When trying to interpret this dream, the first thing that pops into my mind is the saying “a fish out of water.” If you don’t know what this saying means it's when you are feeling super uncomfortable in life. Normally, in some social situations like a party or job interview. (yes I have had many of those)  It’s kind of like when you're the new kid at school or trying a sport you’ve never played before. It is for this reason I feel that the dream is about the fact you are feeling uncomfortable.

What does it mean to dream of a fish out of water?

When we dream of a fish out of water, our brain might be painting a picture of how we are feeling deep down inside. Imagine you’re a fish, happy in your pond or lake -- and suddenly, plop, you're on the land. We all know how we feel when in water and can’t breathe that is the same for the fish. It’s kind of like when you try to read a book in the middle of a noisy kitchen; something just doesn’t feel right. Let me also highlight that when a fish opens its mouth then the water passes on its gills, and these absorb oxygen.

This is much like our lungs. For this reason, a large amount of fish specifies can breathe in the air (above water) A fish can only survive for a short while out of the water. Goldfish (looking at the pet fish now) can survive for an hour whereas guppies can only survive for 10 minutes. In the dream, you were probably panicking about if the fish was going to die. Did you help the fish get back into the water? That could mean you have the strength to help out someone close to you. It's all about how you dream about that fish out of water. Are you the fish, or are you watching it struggle? Maybe you're the hero of the dream. I do feel that helping the fish get back into the water is a positive dream.

Fish is one of the most common symbols in dreams. It has both positive and negative dream interpretations. However, most of the associations of dreaming fish are positive. But what does it mean if you feel uncomfortable while dreaming about fish? For example, you see a fish out of the water and it makes you feel unpleasant and you suddenly feel the urge to help the fish get back in the water to survive. You feel pressure to help the fish on time. Or you don’t because you don’t care. Either way, such a dream foretells unpleasant situations and troubles appearing in your waking life I am afraid to say. Your dream might foretell disappointment, especially if you see muddy or dirty water along with the fish out of water in your dream. If the fish was dead, it’s a negative sign. Seeing dead fish in dreams can point to problems and illness in the future. You may find yourself in an “uncomfortable and unexpected” situation in waking life. Perhaps you will feel uncomfortable in the presence of someone. Your dream is probably suggesting that you should make some changes.

It is true to say that some species of fish can in fact live out of water. But as I am sure you are aware these are quite rare. mudskippers for example can live for days and some even breathe above water. There have been many studies on these fish. Spiritually speaking seeing fish living outside water, and dreaming of fish living out of water indicates that you are likely to survive some crazy things in life. As I have already mentioned from a scientific standpoint, certain fish species do have the ability to survive out of water for different lengths of time. For instance, the Mangrove Rivulus can live for about two months on land, and also Climbing Perch, can 'walk' on land using its fins (crazy I know). These remarkable fish living outside water it mean that someone will challenge your traditional views and that you will find resilience and adaptability over the coming weeks.

What does it mean biblically to dream of fish out of water?

In terms of the biblical meaning of fish out of the water, fish often represent abundance and faith in the Christian tradition. Remember, that story of the miracle of Jesus multiplying the fishes and loaves to feed the people, (Matthew 14:13-21, Mark 6:31-44, Luke 9:10-17, and John 6:5-15), is a good example of this symbolism. The reason I mention this is that dreaming of fish could be linked to themes of providence, faith, and spiritual nourishment. However, a fish out of water is not specifically mentioned in the bible. It is my belief this represents a feeling of being “out of one's natural environment” or a call to return to the source of your spiritual side.

In all the websites I have read about fish, they are seen as symbols of the subconscious and elements of personal development or transformation. Dreaming of fish out of water may therefore mean an unfamiliar situation is coming. 

What is the psychological meaning of dreaming of a fish out of water?

My favorite dream psychologist, Carl Jung might interpret such a dream as representative of something that has found itself in an unusual or 'unnatural' psychological situation. For Carl Jung, fish symbolize deeper thoughts or insights emerging into conscious awareness. And, if we marry the two interpretations he might say our internal thoughts are 'out of water', or out of their usual element.

Why so we use the saying "Like a Fish Out of Water"?

In my view saying: "like a fish out of water" is a clue to describe our feelings in real life. If I say, "I felt like a fish out of water in my new job," you instantly get that I was uncomfortable, right?

This saying dates way, way back, and no one really knows where it comes from. It doesn’t take a genius to know that fish need water, and without it, they’re totally out of their zone. Have you had a moment when you visited someone’s house and everything felt a bit odd? The food, the rules, even the way they talked? That's what it's like -- a feeling of not belonging. And it's normal to feel this way now and then, especially when we’re doing something for the first time or meeting new people. But guess what? This is a spiritual sign that we can learn to adapt, find the water we need, and turn that awkward situation into a cool new experience.

What does it mean to dream of a dead fish out of water?

It is not uncommon to have this dream. Fish breathe by aerobic respiration, but when we as humans breathe in air their gill filaments collapse. And, spiritually this can indicate something going wrong in life. I don’t want to alarm you of course. In Chinese traditions, fish are typically symbols of prosperity and fortune. However, a dead fish might be seen as a sign of missed opportunities or wealth that has “gone away”. It could also represent a warning to pay attention to one's finances or personal well-being. Greek mythology also offers a meaning. For instance, Aphrodite and her son Eros turned themselves into fish to escape the monster Typhon, leading to the image of two fish as the symbol for the constellation Pisces. A dead fish in this context, in dreams could perhaps signify a lost protection or a need to face something without an escape route. Overall, the meaning of dreaming of a dead fish out of water is all about something going away or escaping in life. 

What does it mean to dream of saving a fish out of water?

In my 20 years of writing this website, I believe water represents emotions in dreams. Therefore, saving a fish out of the water in a dream might mean you have to save something in life. Fish in Indian culture represent abundance and prosperity - saving a fish may thus be an omen of luck or a way of ensuring future prosperity. I also feel that some superstitions state: that a fish out of water means misfortune or disturbance (sorry to say). The fish as a symbol in Welsh and Scottish folklore translates to good luck. Superstitious about fish are found worldwide and I won't go into all of them but saving a fish is supposed to be good luck. In one way, I think that dreaming about saving a fish 'could be interpreted as 'rebirth - because water is associated with emotions.

For a fish to be taken out of the water in a dream, is considered "severe distress" especially if you see the fish gasping for air and struggling to breathe. This physiological response is not good (for the fish) but spirituality in your dream suggests a moment that urgent action is needed - a possible reflection that something in life is "out of order" and needs your help. I also think this dream might be a metaphor for dealing with issues or problems in a waking life. I am guessing that your dream of saving the fish may just illustrate an actual "life situation" where you have to save yourself against toxic people.

Summary of dreaming of fish out of water?

Fish have a really big part in all sorts of crazy stories and traditions over the years. I’ve highlighted above what it could mean to dream of a fish out of water. Remember as well that in the past (going back to ancient times) fish have appeared in fairy tales like "The Knights of the Fish" and the Albanian tale about twins. Fish have long been used as a symbol of hope. Our ancient ancestors painted fish in caves and biblically a fish out of water could be about finding something out. Take the book of Jonah -- reading this story freaked me out as he gets swallowed by a huge fish. He spent three days in the fish's belly before he got spit back out onto the beach. People have been sharing these sorts of stories in Jewish literature, the Christian Old Testament, and even the Quran. Dreaming about fish out of water is normally about something out of place or trying to adapt to a new situation - kind of like how fish are pros in the water but not so much on land. It could also be about your own emotions and thoughts, sort of bubbling up to the surface, just like fish coming up for air.

By Florance Saul
Mar 4, 2024