Hello readers…it seems that finally spring has arrived in Canada and with that arrival, I am finding myself engaging in day dreaming more. I do not know why but for some reason I am getting clients who are also sharing stories of day dreaming. In trying to process their and my own reasons for daydreaming and trying to find out if there are any therapeutic benefits of this medium to speak, I found some interesting observations by experts. Quoting, Eric Klinger, professor of psychology at the University of Minnesota. ‘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.’ Echoing similar sentiments, “If your mind didn’t wander, then you’d be largely shackled to whatever you are doing right now,” says Jonathan Schooler, a psychologist at the University of California, Santa Barbara. “But instead you can engage in mental time travel and other kinds of simulation. During a daydream, your thoughts are really unbounded.”
And being reaffirmed that I was not wasting time, I decided to daydream with a purpose and followed some basic guidelines, which I have also shared with my clients who have found them to be ‘therapeutic’.
Do limit yourself to a specific amount of time. It can be very easy to let your mind wander forever once you get into a daydreaming zone, but it really helps not to overdo it if you limit yourself to a specific amount of time. Also, pick the right time of day (like not during work or school) to let your mind wander.
Do let yourself really enjoy them. When you’re allowing yourself to daydream, you must really allow yourself to be in the moment and focus on those dreams. It becomes wasteful and pointless if you are constantly being distracted. Think of it as a form of meditation and really allow yourself to be present in your daytime dreaming.
Do try to make them productive in reality. Just because they’re dreams doesn’t mean that they can’t become reality. Think about what you like to day dream about and see how you can turn those dreams into reality. Wherever your mind wanders naturally is probably something that’s important to you so find a way to make those dreams real.
Do listen and learn from them. Dreams — day or night — have a purpose. They are there to tell us about ourselves and our lives. It can be tempting to just become absorbed in them and then let them fade when we come back to reality, but it’s very important to really listen to what your daydreams are telling you.
Don’t allow yourself to get carried away. It can be very easy if you’re a daydreamer to get carried away into the fantasy-filled world of your dreams. Daydreaming is alluring and it’s important to keep yourself focused on the fact that you must, at some point, come back to reality.
Don’t let anyone tell you they’re worthless. Day dreams might seem, at times, like they’re pointless. What might seem like something abstract and unobtainable can actually turn into something meaningful and purpose-driven. Don’t let anyone tell you your dreams aren’t worth anything because they truly are priceless.
Don’t forget that reality is where dreams come true. Dreams are the foundation of great things, but in order to make great things happen, you have to remember that reality is where your dreams can come true. Don’t forget to bring your dreams back to reality and see how you can use them in your life.
Don’t believe they are better than your life. Dreams can be temptresses at times, leading us to believe that what they have is something better than what we already possess. It’s essential when daydreaming to keep in mind that these are your dreams and it’s up to you to make them realities.
So happy daydreaming…..with a purpose….
*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA