DREAMING IS A SIGN OF INTELLIGENCE AND CREATIVITY
Modifying a person’s waking state, daydreaming is a kind of waking dream (day dream) that results in a transient mental detachment from its immediate real environment. Sometimes we let ourselves be taken momentarily by our thoughts, our mind becomes a vagabond.
Whether at work, in a meeting, during a business lunch or on public transport, we can have our heads in the clouds at any time. However, being dreamy is not so bad as one might think. Reverie would be a sign of intelligence and creativity, according to a study published in August 2017 in the scientific journal Neuropsychologia .
REVERIE IS BRAIN CAPACITY
As surprising as it may seem, a brain study by the Georgia Institute of Technologysuggests that daydreaming, for example during meetings, is not necessarily a bad thing. It may be a sign that you are really intelligent and creative.
To arrive at this discovery , the researchers measured the brain structures of more than 100 people while they were in a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machine. Participants were invited to focus on a fixed point for five minutes. The team used the data to identify which parts of the brain were working in unison.
Correlated brain regions provided insight into areas of the brain that are active and working together during a waking and resting state. Interestingly, research has suggested that these same brain models measured during these states are related to different cognitive abilities.
Once they understood how the brain works at rest, the team compared the data with tests that allowed participants to measure their intellectual capacity and creativity. Participants also completed a quiz on wandering their minds in everyday life.
PEOPLE WITH AN EFFECTIVE BRAIN MAY HAVE TOO MUCH BRAIN CAPACITY TO KEEP THEIR MIND FROM WANDERING
Participants who reported more frequent reverie achieved higher intellectual and creative abilities and had more efficient brain systems measured in the MRI machine.
People tend to think that the wandering mind is something bad, as if being in the clouds sometimes was a kind of disability. The data from this study prove the opposite and are consistent with the idea that this is not always true because some people have more effective brains. Greater efficiency means more thinking skills, and the brain can distract itself when it accomplishes easy tasks. Which causes states of wandering of the mind.
To find out if our brain is effective, there is a fairly simple clue. When you can go in and out of conversations or tasks where appropriate, then come back naturally without missing important points or steps, it’s pretty good sign!
This discovery corresponds to an image that everyone knows, that of the scientist or teacher distracted (the kind of brilliant person) locked in his own world and sometimes unconscious of his environment. Or, the image of schoolchildren intellectually too advanced for their classes, while their friends need five minutes to learn something new, they finish a minute, then check and start dreaming.
Finally, researchers believe that the results open the door to follow-up research to better understand when the wandering spirit is harmful, and when it can actually be helpful. Because effectively, being able to control our dreams and our states of daydream can have many interests to improve our physical and mental health.
It is important to point out that there are also important individual differences to consider, such as a person’s motivation or intention to stay focused on a particular task. Indeed, reverie, in a more negative sense, can also be a flight forward to avoid finishing our task, extracting us from a boring meeting or being a sign of fatigue. Let’s hope that future research in this area provides us with keys to improve our daydreaming and benefit from their positive benefits.