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Daydreaming to solve problems

While I don't think that Kalina Christoff is right about people changing their attitudes towards daydreamers, this article from TheAge.com is still interesting:

“People assume that when the mind wanders away it just gets turned off - but we show the opposite, that when it wanders, it turns on,” said Christoff, co-author of the study, and head of a neuroscience laboratory at the University of British Columbia in Western Canada.

The findings, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, suggest daydreaming might be a better way to solve problems than intense focusing.

“People who let themselves daydream might not think in the same focused way as when performing a goal-oriented task, but they bring in more mental and brain resources,” said Christoff.

She argued that now people might change their attitudes towards daydreamers.

Source: ThingsAreGood.com


( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 19th, 2009 03:01 am (UTC)
I am reminded of a story Dan told me a while ago. He was working at Ga College, in his office, thinking about a problem he was having and pondering how to get around it. His chair was kicked back, foot up on a lower drawer, he was staring out the window. His boss popped his head into the door and asked him a question. It took a moment but he snapped back to earth, adjusted his focus, righted his chair and answered the question. His boss gave a bit of a chuckle and went back to his own office saying something about how he could now go back to what he was doing. Dan realized Boss was laughing at the scene he'd walked in on. Dan must have looked like he was totally goofing off! He hollered down the hall at him "I really was working!!"

Fortunately, his boss was used to working with "creative types" so no harm done!
May. 19th, 2009 05:19 am (UTC)
Dan is very lucky, and I am happy for him! I wish more folks had a more understanding attitude.

If I had a dollar for every "Earth to Kate" comment I'd received from my father alone during my formative years ... *sighs*
May. 19th, 2009 12:03 pm (UTC)
I don't think I ever got a report card that didn't mention my problem with daydreaming! Somehow, I managed to get by with passing grades even though no one though I was listening! Owen and Everett are the same way, their teachers say they often look like they are totally zoned out, but if they call on them and ask them something, they always have the right answer! They are listening! I actually think that's a very AD/HD thing to do, some of us can't listen AND look at the same time, but if we look at something that's not moving, we can listen better!
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )


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