It is crazy that I am now 32 and this is the first time I am putting daydreaming and add together as symptoms of each other. These are two things that have defined me throughout my life!
The other thing I find strange is that this is not a major connection that everyone makes. If it is difficult to pay attention, doesn’t t follow that you are daydreaming?
I understand that some people who have ADD move from one external point of focus to the next, but what about those of us who are constantly flipping around internally? This is how a lot of people with ADD end up flying under the radar.
It was not until the dopamine fast that I clued in that daydreaming might be a problem for me. I always thought I was just bored with life, so I daydreamed.
While I was on the fast I did a lot of writing. Writing is entertaining and meaningful to me, so I should have been able to focus. However, focusing remained a major problem.
The good news is that over the course of the dopamine fast, my attention did improve dramatically. The resensitization of my dopamine receptors was a must.
This started a cycle. I think that daydreaming can also be a source of dopamine. Your brain has a hard time telling the difference between daydreaming and reality, so in theory, imagining a positive outcome to an action will get your brain just as much dopamine as doing the action.
(It probably gets you less dopamine, but after a calculation that includes how much energy you would expend to do the action, daydreaming will still be the logical choice.)
So, when my dopamine receptors began to get more sensitive (becasue of the fast), my daydreaming became much worse. My body was on the hunt for dopamine.
However, once I realized this was happening, I started a daydream journal, and just cancelled my strongest fantasies. The result of this was a bit more focus on my work.
This is what started the cycle. My body learned it could get stimulation from doing work, so off I went.
The problem with daydreaming and ADD is that it is so hard to notice when you start daydreaming. However, the good news is that you really only have to get the big ones to start to notice an improvement.
It is also important to mention that both ADD and daydreaming are related to higher creativity. This is because the mysterious ‘aha’ moment usually comes to us while we are daydreaming.
So, don’t be too hard on yourself if you daydream a lot. The key is to manage it. Tools like meditation, exercise, a daydream journal, and a dopamine fast are great places to start!
Three Thing To-Do List
- Go Swimming Twice
- Write a Blog Post About Stress and Daydreaming
- Get oil in my truck changed