If you find your mind just wandering off from time to time, Jack Sinatra says you’re not wasting that time, you’re daydreaming.
When we hear the word “daydreamer,” do we think slacker, airhead, or some bozo who’s got his head in the clouds? Does daydreaming bring to mind a bored student in English class gazing out a nearby window not paying attention to anything the teacher has to say?
Daydreamers dream everywhere. I should know. I have daydreamed my whole life. One minute I’m learning the quadratic formula in algebra, and the next minute, I’m saving the school from a zombie apocalypse.
Though the stereotype of missing my math lesson could be accurate at times, it is not the full picture. Skilled daydreamers, like myself, can focus both on the task at hand and simultaneously allow our minds to wander. In other words, the minds of daydreamers have to wander or they suffer from boredom. I have caught myself mind-wandering more times than I’d like to mention, but I rarely miss information because of it.
Daydreaming also breeds creativity. In 2012, a team of researchers at the University of California in Santa Barbara found that participants who mind-wandered came up with more creative solutions for solving problems. I have found that when my brain is challenged the most, my creative ideas just can’t be contained! Who knew science would agree with me?