10 fascinating things you probably didn't know about daydreaming

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You probably remember countless times when you've let your mind wander. Maybe you were a kid, sitting in a particularly boring class — or maybe at work, doing something that didn't require very vigorous thought.

Or maybe it was only a few moments ago, before you clicked on this article and were idly skimming over the front page of LittleThings.

But no matter when, where, or what you daydream about, everyone does it — and it can be both a blessing and a curse depending on what's going on around us.

As it turns out, there's more to daydreaming than just being bored and slacking off (although that is part of it), and it's not only a fascinating look at how the brain works, but it also says a lot about who you are — just as much, or maybe even more than your taste in music does!

Read on to discover some surprising facts about daydreaming — including why we do it, what it means, and what your daydreams say about you!

Do you daydream often? What is usually about? Let us know in the comments below!

1. You Daydream Less With Age

Maya Borenstein for LittleThings

It's kind of sad, but it's true. As you get older, you'll daydream less. That doesn't mean you won't daydream as the years progress, you'll just have less.

It could also mean that as you get older, you get to actually experience all those cool things you dreamt about as a child.

If you used to daydream about your wedding, and then you grew up and got married, now you don't need to daydream about it because you've lived it!

2. Your Method Of Dreaming Also Changes Over Time

Maya Borenstein for LittleThings

As your brain develops and matures, the structure your nerve connections also change.

This means that the actual physical way you daydream today is different from the way your brain did it when you were a kid.

3. Your Brain Changes When You Daydream

Maya Borenstein for LittleThings

Your brain has two modes of thinking: analytic and empathetic. The analytic deals with facts and logic, while the empathetic side deals with emotions and intuition.

While daydreaming, your brain cycles between these two modes, often without you even realizing it!

4. Daydreams Help Your Brain Talk To Itself

Maya Borenstein for LittleThings

Because you're not engaged in wholly empathetic or analytic thought, the two modes can explore the same issue, and lead you to see it from both sides.

This oscillation in thought types actually helps people be more creative, and helps them come up with new connections, associations, and ideas.

5. You Lose Track Of Things When You Daydream

Maya Borenstein for LittleThings

Daydreaming has its downsides, and this is one we've all experienced.

You were just doing something, and then a thought popped into your head and you chased it right down the rabbit hole. And now you're staring at whatever's in front of you wondering what you're supposed to be doing. Oops.

The trick to good daydreaming is knowing when to indulge. If you're doing something that requires precision or a lot of conscious thought, try to stay focused on your task. Focus is important, too!

6. Kids And Teens Need To Daydream

Maya Borenstein for LittleThings

The next time you catch your kids' minds wandering, let them be. Daydreaming is actually good for them!

Daydreaming helps them try on different identities and explore different paths inside the safety of their own heads.

For teens, daydreaming is also a way to cope with the new and intense emotions they're feeling.

7. Stress Causes More Daydreams

Maya Borenstein for LittleThings

Daydreaming is a form of escapism, and when you have a million tasks ahead of you, sometimes it's nice to imagine, well, anything else.

Escapism doesn't solve any problems, but sometimes, daydreaming can help you come up with a solution to those problems in a new way.

If you find yourself daydreaming, it might be your subconscious with a suggestion for you.

But don't get into the habit of just daydreaming when there are real things to be done. Escapism isn't a real solution!

8. Many People Daydream About The Same Things

Maya Borenstein for LittleThings

Think your daydreams are weird? They probably aren't. In fact, most people daydream about the same basic things, as they all reflect issues we all face.

A daydream about becoming rich might relate to financial anxieties. One about being famous might reflect a need for recognition. Being in charge of the world? Maybe you're feeling powerless in real life. Sex and romance appear a lot to, and those are usually pretty self-explanatory.

And if you have some pretty angry revenge fantasies? Don't worry, that's normal. You're just expressing feelings of anger in a harmless way.

9. Daydreaming Doesn't Make You Flighty

Maya Borenstein for LittleThings

We're often told that daydreaming is a sign of being lazy or flaky, and that it's a waste of time, but there's no connection between daydreaming and success.

In fact, people who daydream more have an edge when it comes to creative problem-solving!

10. Daydreaming Is Good For You

Maya Borenstein for LittleThings

So long as you don't need to really focus, daydreaming does more good than harm. It's a natural process that helps us cope with stress and even come up with new ideas.

The freedom of daydreaming is why it's so appealing. Away from all other people, you can come up with whatever you want — and it might even be something brilliant!

So there you have it, all you dreamy people. Sit back, close your eyes, and start daydreaming!

Just remember to hit that SHARE button first!

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