A DAY DREAMING
photography Jenya Kushnir & Joshua Paull
model Krissa luna
Daydreams take up a shocking 47 percent of our waking hours. Some seem to think they make us feel undisciplined and unproductive. And they don’t even make us happier. I tend to disagree as they make me happier and I come up with some of my best ideas when I daydream. So, maybe Florida Dreams are different?
1. They’ll Bring Out Your Deep Inner Thoughts You have two minutes. How many uses can you think of for a brick? Chances are, you’ll generate more ideas — creative ones — if you stop to daydream first than if you stay focused. When volunteers in a study tried this, they were a shocking 41 percent more prolific. Unconsciously your brain is working on a solution, recombining bits of information and making unexpected connections. Try the study’s drill: Ponder your problem, and then let yourself space out (watch objects drift on a screensaver, for instance) for 12 minutes before refocusing.
2. They Remind You of Your Master Plan Amid life’s petty stuff — traffic jams, checkout lines, dusting — daydreaming may help remind you of larger goals. The brain has two networks: the “default” (associated with creativity and self-reflection) and the “executive” (planning and problem-solving); when one is on, the other is usually off. The surprise finding was that daydreaming activated both networks simultaneously, and the dual activity was stronger in people so “zoned out” they didn’t even know their minds had wandered. What comes of this are replays of the past, what-if scenarios, abstract, free-ranging ideas — and, if we’re really lucky, insights.
3. They Can Erase Heartbreaking Moments Let’s say there’s something you’d like to forget such as a depressing encounter, a medical procedure, etc... To induce a merciful bit of amnesia immediately try to let your mind roam to something that is emotionally different from that experience. Note: The “amnesia effect” was especially strong when thoughts strayed to a distant place. This is why Florida Dreams is easy because we live in the tropical. So if you don't live in Florida find that special spot where you live and retreat fast even if it is only for 15 minutes. But don’t expect an Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind experience. “‘Intentional forgetting’ won’t completely erase your memory,” but it will get rid of some (undesirable) details.
4. They Can Be Pleasingly Controllable In your daydreams, would you rather plan or reflect? To drift to the future (how should I ask for a raise?), move your body forward; to think about the past (lost loves, etc.), move backward. This works subconsciously because space and time are linked in the mind. If you’ve ever worried that your chronic dreaminess is actually an early sign of senility, here’s some relief. For better or for worse, distraction from a task is more common among the young.