You remember the teachers who snapped you out of a trance, “quit daydreaming and pay attention!” ? They are partially right. School is important. To have a daydream is fantastic, in fact recommended, but there is a time and place. Daydreams are the keys to goals. Essentially, your brain is playing out a plan to achieve what you want, all automatically! Often the daydreams don’t really go anywhere, but they sure do feel good… and I’m a proponent for following what feels good.
Daydreaming is Bad?
Daydreaming gets a bad rap. Teachers don’t like it, parents reinforce that it’s a bad habit, and friends tease for it. They accuse the dreamer of being under the influence. People say, “come back down to Earth,” or “so-and-so is out to lunch.” Perhaps they are envious of the dreamer’s ability to detach so easily and leave everyone behind, or offended that the dreamer cares more about what’s in their head than listening to the other.
Influence and Regulate the Daydream
A daydream is most effective when we influence and slightly regulate it. A daydream needs to be guided often because it should never wander into the dark side of imagination. It should never bring a person down or feel bad. Further, it is important to regulate daydreams so that they are not taking place during inopportune times. Times such as driving, an intense lesson in class, during an intimate conversation with a partner, or shooting a gun will all get a person killed, or worse… except for only the intense lesson in class, I suppose. The best way to take control of thoughts is meditation. Essentially, meditation is a practice of guiding thoughts anyway. After some practice, the mind will naturally be able to focus and gently guide a daydream. On top of that, it’s easier to escape or take control of a daydream that goes dark.
Daydreams are Foundations to Manifesting
If it feels good, do it. Obviously the mind wants to go there. It goes there for a number of things: to defragment, conceive new ideas, solve a question or just chill and explore the far reaches of the imagination. Gurus prescribe visualizations because it gets the mind seeing a clear outcome. It puts a pin in the map, so to speak- a destination. A visualization is a practice for the big event- and the more you practice, the better you get. Olympic athletes commonly visualize their entire event as part of their training. The same neurons fire, so technically they are mentally training. Some years back, I remember reading about a study where half of the participants mentally practiced a task and the other half did not. When it was time to actually perform the task, the group that mentally practiced, performed significantly better.
A Daydream Can Improve Mood
When daydreams are happy memories, future plans, or ruminating over a desire, it feels great. That’s what this is life is all about, after all. We work our asses off, sacrifice and undergo pain to try to feel great at the end of the day. The beautiful shortcut is to think of things that feel good and a daydream is a fantastic vehicle for just that.
Take some moments out of the day to simply let the mind wander. Watch where it goes, monitor how it makes you feel and dwell on the great feeling parts- really milk it. It may prove to be a helpful pick-me-up when energy gets low in the day or that needed recalibration on a coveted goal.