To answer my own question, yes I do daydream a lot.
Believe it or not daydreaming is a symptom of anxiety disorder and depression. So chances are if you’re an anxious person you spend much of your time in la la land, fantasizing about a very cool version of yourself doing extraordinary things. But why?
Most shrinks think that daydreaming is a self defense mechanism. Daydreaming is a form of escapism. As you well know, when you have an anxiety disorder things can get negative and intense. Not only that, but all that negativity can get strung out over weeks and even months at a time.
As result, the brain cries out for a break and so it becomes very easy to drift off into a dream state. Daydreaming is like a time out for your tired mind.
There are two schools of thought on whether daydreaming and fantasy are a good or bad thing for those that suffer with mental ailments like anxiety disorder.
On the one hand, you have those that say that daydreaming is bad because it distracts you from dealing with your problems and hinders you from correcting whatever is stressing you out. They think it will only prolong and maybe even intensify whatever is troubling you.
Then there are those that completely disagree with that view and find that daydreaming is actually healthy. The thought is that daydreaming is a break from mental stress which can only be good. And it’s also thought that daydreaming allows for creative thought and indirect productivity.
So then, is daydreaming good or bad? I think in moderation it is a good thing.
When I was a kid I was sent home with notes pinned to my backpack that told my parents that I was constantly daydreaming. I’ve had this love affair with daydreaming for as long as I can remember, but I was never less productive because of it.
Even at work I find that I space out quite a bit. I usually dream about being somewhere else, like a resort or something goofy that gets me away from any difficulty I’m having. I don’t however plan my space time, it just kind of happens on its own. But I also use that time to think about things to write about, and about other projects I want to develop so it’s not always frivolous.
Did you know that they even have a personality type named for people that chronically fantasize? Fantasy Prone Personality or FPP is a trait type describing people that experience their fantasies deeply and can sometimes cause them to get lost in their waking dreams to the point of having an out of body experience. When I read that my first reaction was to think that the labeling of everything has gone a bit too far, but that’s just me I guess.
Anyway, if you find yourself daydreaming a lot you’re not a weirdo. You are simply trying to give your mind a break. And as long as you don’t neglect your responsibilities go ahead and dream away.