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Does Your Mind Wander? Here's Why That Can Be Your Greatest Asset

https://www.bakadesuyo.com/2012/12/wandering-mind-path-creative-genius-misery-early-death/

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Does Your Mind Wander? Here's Why That Can Be Your Greatest Asset
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It’s Okay To Wander

It’s Okay To Wander

People’s minds wander, sometimes up to 30 to 40 percent of the time, while doing activities like reading.

A wandering mind is invoking the good brain regions, which are associated with solving insight puzzles. It is at work trying to find the answer to your stress-related problems, automatically.

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A Wandering, Creative Mind

Mind-wandering makes your brain richer and more creative. Like a creativity machine left on its own, it helps to solve problems, enrich our understanding, and process information that is otherwise left unprocessed.

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Creativity Happens In Chaos

Creativity Happens In Chaos

Creativity by default is a messy process. Doing creative stuff, and letting your mind wander forms new connections and helps us subconsciously compare and contrast our problems and solutions.

Our brain's neural network needs to be fed different kinds of food, at the same time.

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The Dark Side Of Mind-Wandering

Mind-wandering has also been associated with unhappiness and stress.

This happens when the individual’s current life situation is not optimal or desirable. The mind tries to make up for this by imagining other things.

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Focus-Unfocus

A wandering unfocused mind allows noise inside us, which helps in developing new ideas. A completely focused mind is shut, and as there is no noise which enters, it remains uncreative.

Many people have certain rituals that allow them to relax their minds deliberately. Like pausing and savouring a hot cup of coffee in the morning, allowing the mind to go places.

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The Importance Of Boredom

It drives us to engage in activities that we find more meaningful than those at hand. Without it, we’d be perpetually excited by everything.

Research shows that people who are bored...

Focus And The Brain

When we’re consciously doing things we’re using the “executive attention network, ” the parts of the brain that control and inhibit our attention. The attention network makes it possible for us to relate directly to the world presently around us.

By contrast, when our minds wander, we activate the brain’s “default mode network, ” which is the brain “at rest”; not focused on an external, goal-oriented task. In this mode, we still tap about 95% of the energy we use when our brains are engaged in focused thinking. 

Types Of Daydreaming

  • Poor attention control: when people with poor attention control drift into daydreaming. These people are anxious, easily distracted, and have difficulty concentrating, even on their daydreams.
  • Guilty-dysphoric: when our thoughts drift to unproductive and negative places. We berate ourselves for perceived mistakes or flaws and feel emotions like guilt, anxiety, and anger.
  • Positive-constructive: when our thoughts veer toward the imaginative; it reflects our drive to explore ideas and feelings, plan, and problem-solve. 

5 more ideas

Boredom sparks creativity

Boredom sparks creativity

Boredom is one of the most important factors in creativity. Boredom is a productive state as long as you don't let it get to you.

Agatha Christie said there is nothing like boredom...

Our mind when we're bored

When we're bored, two key things are happening in our minds: One is a 'desire bind' where someone wants to do something but not anything that's on offer. The other is when your mind is itching to be engaged.

Don't fill the void

Our first instinct when we experience some boredom is to fill it with Netflix lists, Instagram feeds, and TikTok videos. Riding out this boredom is vital though.

Boredom is not in itself creative. It's what it leads to that is significant. In the gap of boredom, you're motivated to look for something else, and there's a real chance you'll discover something new.

Our Wandering Minds

Our Wandering Minds

For at least two thousand years, our minds have been wandering away from the object of focus.

Mind-wandering is a factor of a human mind and varies according to how vivid a person’s...

The Neuroscience Of Mind-Wandering

Our brain’s executive system is active during any goal-oriented task, where there is a level of focus required.

During a period of passivity, the large scale brain networks become the default mode networks and work in tandem. This is our period of rest, where the entire brain is in a relaxed but highly active state.

This period is when we let our brain generate spontaneous thoughts while not being focused on anything.

The Constant Mental Oscillation

Our brain is oscillating between two different brain states: Focused thinking and Diffused thinking. This is the reason people have shower thoughts or sudden solutions to problems that are bothering them for long.

These two modes of thinking allow us to merge creativity with productivity.