Maladaptive Daydreaming: where wild minds come to rest
My main issue with MDD has always been about time being spent, and the discipline required to overcome the urges to daydream.
Do you daydream because you enjoy it, or want to escape from the real world, or have let yourself go? What about the time then? Do you try to counteract this by doing something more constructive or productive? Or do you become more internalised and continue daydreaming as if you have all the time in the world?
I have known that curbing your daydreams has its way of integrating more fully into the real world, but it is still very difficult without some intrinsic motivation. Particularly for the reasons being one, I could be avoidant, and therefore I don't feel obliged to face reality head-on, two, I could be depressed so I could care less. That is my problem when it comes to "time" whenever I daydream. A majority of it is lost with a lack of productive results, all of which never made it out of my head. That is what I mean by becoming rather internalised.
All too often I feel it is up to the person what to make of his or her daydreams. I am too comfortable right now, not wanting to change even when necessary. I know I will need to firmly adjust my mindset if I really want to use my time more efficiently. I am sure some of you will relate to that, and I respect any advice or thought on how you are coping with your MDD, successfully or not. The latter which I find perfectly understandable, indeed.
I would say usually between 4 to 8 hours. It depends on my daily obligations. In the past, when I had little to do, I allowed myself to indulge in a given daydream until I became fatigued.
On weekdays about 2 hours, on weekends sometimes 4-6 hours.. I feel like its a huge chunk of time wasted afterwards.
The reality of wasting time is a big, big issue with daydreaming. When you're daydreaming, you aren't thinking about the time you are spending on it. It's only when real-world events interfere that you are jolted back and feel the loss of those hours that you did NOT invest in your real life, today. It adds up.
On the one hand, I'm of the opinion that a daydreamer should never be restricted from daydreaming. A daydreamer should follow the impulse to daydream across whatever imaginative terrain it leads them to, theoretically. To deny yourself permission to daydream may bottle you up; it may be better to do it and get it out of your system.
Personally speaking, it got to the point with me that I had to start imposing time limits, because my daydreaming wasn't being productive for me even in the daydream sense. So it depends on how quality your daydream time is; if it's good or great, I wouldn't worry so much about time, I would focus on enjoying the daydreaming and understanding your motivations for it. If your daydreaming is poor and crappy, then you're better off not giving in to it and turning your attention to reality. There are good days and bad days.
When I was a kid, I imposed time limits but then it could so complex I couldn't. I thought I was daydreaming for 30 mins but then I realized 3 hours went by. Sometimes, I feel like I have to go into daydream mode because my head is filled with all of these stories, characters and plot lines that I am getting them all mixed up and confused. It is like changing the TV channel at record speed and I don't know how to slow them down or how to control them. When it is like that, I need to go into my room, lay on my bed, and focus on one daydream at a time. This takes a long time to do (a day or longer) and I feel I need to do it because if I don't my head will explode. Afterwards, I feel guilty, lazy, and useless. It is hard for me to get back in the swing of things. This is most common on weekends and breaks.
A good day is when I daydream for about 2 hours total. Bad days are a full weekend. Typical days are around 4- 6 hours. (That includes: getting up, getting ready, traveling to and from work, down time at work, work itself, and the hours after work.). The worst is when I daydreamed for 1 full week. I don't even remembering eating. I went for help but the doctors told me "it was depression" and gave me meds that somewhat helped.
When I think about how long I daydream, I automatically think about my "main DD". In all "reality" I probably DD for like 1-5 hours of the main daydream, and during my regular day, I literally daydream all day. This bothers me none. I daydream so much, I have "people" inside my head that I daydream with. We talk about them, suggest new characters and plots, even assign eachother to different characters.