Daydreaming: Is It Good?
Embarrassing? ….Or Is It Bad?
“Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.”
– Albert Einstein
We all daydream to some extent, for some of us dreaming is a necessity to take us through our day to day life’s, while many of us just enjoy shutting our eyes and letting our mind wander through a utopian Neverland simply for pleasure, psychologists now believe there are substantial benefits for people who daydream! And as daydreaming is such a common part of our everyday lives, yet also one of the most private parts – we were curious to find out what we all daydream about the most?
Psychologists claim we use half of our mental activity on daydreaming alone, they enhance our creativity, and reveal our innermost desires and fears. More surprisingly according to Eric Kling, professor of psychology at University of Minnesota, “daydreaming is what makes us organized. We think of daydreams as scatterbrained and unfocused, but one of the functions of daydreaming is to keep your life’s agenda in front of you; it reminds you of what’s coming up, it rehearses new situations, plans the future and scans past experiences so you can learn from them”.
The benefits go on, including :
- Enhances and allows for creativity
- Problem solving
- Helps us realize our goals
- Enhanced memory
- Lifted Mood
Daydreaming can’t be that embarrassing can it?
Well apparently it can – In a survey conducted at University of Minnesota, 80% percent of people said that they would rather admit to embarrassing experiences than reveal their daydreams. So with that being said…
We wanted to know 7 things that we think about most when we daydream and this is what we found:
- Sex And Love
- Telling your boss what you really think of them
- Traveling abroad [ even though we hate sand]
- Doing a heroic act
- Meeting a particular famous person(s)
- Winning the lottery
Does daydreaming have it’s problems?
“Realize deeply that the present moment Is all you have.Make the now the primary focus of your life.”
– Eckhart Tolle
Spending All Your Time Dreaming About Something You Want Instead Of Actually Making Your Dream A Reality:
The reality of real life on an overcast day in Great Britain is enough to make anyone reach for their eye-mask, but the problem is if you’re continuously dreaming, then what are you doing the rest of the time? If you only exist within your minds fantasy – then you will remain in a fantasy, and if you’re not taking steps to materialize your dreams in the present then fundamentally – they will always just be dreams.
Some of us become so caught up in our own minds that we believe we are making progress with our ambitions – because we have mentally visualized ourselves winning a trophy, or maybe becoming vegan, and know its something we ‘mean to do’ and are capable of. We then almost believe that we are that person – regardless of the fact that we may have essentially done nothing in the way of adopting that meat free diet; and haven’t even entered that swimming competition to win a trophy in the first place.
How to stay in the present moment
Staying focused on the present is easier said that done, even if we try to sooner or later we will find our minds wildly wandering off tangent from one thought to the next, we have to accept that this is the way our minds are programmed.
Mindfulness is an increasingly popular practice that involves us bringing our attention to our senses, focusing in detail on the internal and external experiences that are happening in the present moment. Examples of being mindful can range from observing a beautiful sunset in mid-July whilst walking the dog ; to even focusing on a domestic task like washing the dishes. Sounds like a riveting way to spend half an hour of my life, you may be thinking – However focusing on the entirety of any activity in detail whether that be while washing up, feeling how warm the water feels on your hands, watching the mess disappear from a dirty plate; and the best part being, watching the soapy bubbles pop.
Ok, this is starting to become comical now, but in all seriousness, it works!And before you know it, you will find yourself deeply connected to the present moment.
We also wanted to know if there were different types of daydreamers – So we analyzed our dreamy habits and here’s what we ended up with:
of the following may sound familiar then you might want to get yourself to mindful meditation lessons.
The Hungry Daydreamer
One of the more common types of daydreamer, we needn’t explain what the hungry daydreamer spends their days thinking about. The Editors of Chant And Be Happy (a book based on the teachings of spiritual guru A.C. Bhaktivedanta) state that “many consider our most basic and fundamental pleasures to be eating and sex”, so it would probably be strange if you weren’t daydreaming about food at some point in the day! Which brings us onto our next one.
- *some people are happy to never act upon their dreams and just keep them as dreams in the event of disappointment – quote alchemist book
Article by Tom Powell – senior writer @HTMA London