In a recent study (Jones & DeCicco, 2009) a colleague and I have found that people who were mild to moderately high in anxiety tended to have more scene changes. The participants in the study reported going from one scene to the next, where people high in depression did not. This finding implies that people who are anxious in their waking day bring thoughts and feelings into sleep time that may affect the images that are being created. That is, the images do not appear to finish out a scene entirely but rather, scenes are quickly changed with unfinished story lines. For example, a man may be running down a road in one dream scene and then suddenly, finds himself at a friend's house. These abrupt scene changes were correlated with waking day anxiety.
Another interesting finding from the study is that people high in waking day anxiety did not have as much "discovery" with dream interpretation. Perhaps it is the fact that the dreams are so abruptly changing scenes that it is difficult to relate this to any one waking day life with interpretation. Nevertheless, many scene changes in a dream may be altering us to the possibility of waking day anxiety. This could help in self-guided dream work and in professional practice since jumping scenes may be an important element of the dreaming landscape.