Now that we've had some time to think about this & discuss it, let's start creating a plan to help.  Let's try and make a list that we can refer to & refer others to.  Here's my question:


What helps? 


Not just what helps you stop daydreaming.  This is a condition we need to learn to live with. 


What helps in any way possible?  Interpret that in every way possible, and be as specific as possible. 

Some ways you can think of it:


What helps make your life better?

What helps you feel like you’re living a more fulfilling life?

What helps you feel like you’re in control?

What helps you daydream less & what helps you daydream more?

What makes your daydreams more productive?

What makes your daydreams feel less productive?

When do you leave your daydreams feeling better & more charged?

What makes them leave you feeling more sluggish?

What helps you feel stronger?

What helps you feel safer?

What helps you feel more confident?


Let’s act like we’re compiling a list of things to tell new people who’re just figuring out they’re going through this & are not sure what to do.  What advice would you give them to help them feel more empowered?

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1. What helps make your life better?

     achieving something for real. unlike my dreams

2. What helps you feel like you're living a more fulfilling life?
     sometimes when i daydream i talk to myself in my day dreams and i ask myself what i really want from life. and when i try to achieve them i feel fulfilled
 
3. What helps you feel like you're in control?
 talking to my ocd and accepting it as a part me that wants to help me.
4. What helps you daydream less&what helps you daydream more?
day dream less being busy and productive and concentrating on work i like. day dream more anxiety and things i want really badly but have no control over.
 
5. What makes your daydreams feel less productive?
when i m sad and and don't feel like feeling anything any more

6. What makes your daydreams fell more productive?
when my head is full of ideas or as coldplay puts it a head full of dreams
7. When do you leave your daydreams feeling better & more charged?
when i m the hero in them and have done something really great.
8. What makes them leave you feeling more sluggish?
again its very emotion driven so if i m in a sad mood and my thoughts are all scattered it wont go well for me
9. What helps you fell safer?
being in the known and in control of my outcomes

10. What helps you feel more confident?
playing to my strengths helps me be more confident

What helps? Right now I feel as if I have a lack of a support system that could be able to help me with exactly what I need. So, I just accept that things will be as they are and have low expectations.

What helps in any way possible? hobbies.

What helps make your life better? family.

What helps you feel like you're living a more fulfilling life? When I accomplish a task.

What helps you feel like you're in control? A mask by putting on makeup and when I clean things up.

What helps you daydream less? When I understand that there's a difference between my dreams and the possibility of achieving them in reality.

What helps you daydream more? When I think I can get what I want.

What makes your daydreams more productive? When I let go completely and don't care what anyone else thinks.

When do you leave your daydreams feeling better & more charged? When I feel as if I haven't been a slacker or if I come up with an idea that is odd or insightful.

What makes them leave you feeling more sluggish? When I know that they are impossible dreams.

What helps you feel stronger? Eating right, makeup, talking to friends or family

What helps you feel safer? Shutting off listening to people who cause pain and being able to hide from them.

What helps you feel more confident? Being able to hide.

Hi

What helps me  - I'm working out every other day. Sometimes, I work out twice a day. I'm MDD-ing to get to my classes. But, once I'm there (and after I work out) I'm very present. I have to be present to get the dance routine memorized, or do the next set of exercises.

Family - does not help. They're the reason I MDD.

I'm trying to write a novel. I've been told I have a gift for character's conversation. (I wish I'd do more writing.)

I feel accomplishing a few tasks helps me to feel more fulfilled.

My therapist (who's researching MDD) helping me find "myself". I'm learning to "get to know my wants/needs". I have small moments during the day in which I'm grateful. I actually fell happy in reality. (work in progress)

Control? I feel control when I accomplish a task from my daily lists for the day.

I MDD when I'm disappointed, lonely and feeling sorry for myself. Once I isolate, I start daydreaming. I'm tired of dealing with "emotional vampires". They exhaust me. But, I deal with them anyway. I try to put up my "boundaries" which get pushed. So, if I feel like a failure in dealing with a "vampire" when I don't want to, I start daydreaming. If I feel like a "vampire" has crossed my boundary, I start daydreaming.

I feel strong when I'm learning something new or listening to a conversation between people. I keep myself hidden.

I also feel super strong on the days when I make mistakes and learn to have compassion for myself.

Anyway, that's my experience.

Thank you

What helps make your life better?


IDK

What helps you feel like you’re living a more fulfilling life?

IDK

What helps you feel like you’re in control?

Therapy kind of helps. Recognizing that I can coordinate the way that others to interact with me. 

What helps you daydream less & what helps you daydream more?


Daydream Less: I believe that creating DIY projects, making art, etc helps relieve my daydreaming because I'm manifesting all of that creative energy into something real. 

Daydream More: Stressful situations like confrontations, driving, going to the store trigger unwanted daydreams. Sometimes I get an itch to listen to music so I can daydream at my own leisure. 

What makes your daydreams more productive?

I think there are many ways to perceive this question. I am perceiving this as, "What about your daydreams makes you feel fulfilled?" 

I often daydream to plan out social interactions that I will have in the future. I would not have the confidence to carry out some conversations if I did not go through this rehearsal process. It makes me feel fulfilled when I can practice the conversation prior to the actual conversation and leave the actual conversation feeling as if I conducted myself well. 

What makes your daydreams feel less productive?

I think there are many ways to perceive this question. I am perceiving this as, "What about your daydreams makes you feel unfulfilled?" 

I often feel unfulfilled when I catch myself in a daydream and realize that I'm 1) wasting my time 2) imagining an interaction that will probably never happen because 3) this daydream interaction is serving as a replacement for a real human interaction. 

When do you leave your daydreams feeling better & more charged? 

1) If someone interrupts me in the middle of an "idealistic/happy/upbeat" daydream. 

2) If I feel that the daydream is "going my way." For example, if the archetypal versions of the people from my real life are responding well to the archetypal version of me.

What makes them leave you feeling more sluggish?

Intrusive, painful, unwanted thoughts or reminders about people that I wish I had better relationships with. 

What helps you feel stronger?


IDK

What helps you feel safer?

IDK

What helps you feel more confident?

IDK

 

antipsychotics stops my daydreams completely , but they leave me depressed...so i do meditation to deal with depression..transcendal meditation almost whole day ..that sums it up

What helps in any way possible? Interpret that in every way possible, and be as specific as possible.
Some ways you can think of it:
(Hi guys. Sorry if my speech is confusing or disorganized. It's difficult for me to write.) One thing that I did was make a playlist with MDD-triggering music. When I do something like chores, I listen to this playlist. Instead of replaying the same daydreams that these songs trigger, I try to replace the daydreams with different thoughts. Or focus on what I'm doing. I did this for a while. Eventually, I became more desensitized to the songs' triggering effects. So I'm happy that it worked :D

However I still have other addictive daydreams that are unrelated to songs.
At the same time, when I listen to the playlist, and experience addictive daydreams, I journal about it. I write about the contents of my daydream, why they are addictive / hard to let go of, and if I would be happier to live without them. I write about what I want in life without MDD.
And also, I find jogging outside for 10-20 minutes to be a great way to temporarily boost your mood and energy. A depressed mood and fatigue often trigger MDD for me and probably other people as well, so running is a good way to fight against it.


What helps make your life better?
It's kind of hard to answer because I'm pretty sure that I have depression. Caffeine and food are usually the only things that make me happy. Other things that make me happy are success. When I get a good assignment or test grade, it makes me happy. When I finish reading a book, stay focused, and am able to remember the details, that feels like an accomplishment to me. And again, physical activity helps me feel less empty and tired.


What helps you feel like you’re living a more fulfilling life?
Successfully completing tasks, reaching goals, and having friends whom I genuinely get along with. However, this rarely happens.


What helps you feel like you’re in control?
I am usually out-of-control.


What helps you daydream less & what helps you daydream more?
Studying in a public place helps me daydream less because other people could notice you staring into space. Experiencing new situations also seems to lessen the daydreams. For example, when I first moved to live independently, I daydreamed less during the first few weeks because I had to focus on adapting to a new location. One other thing is the ritalin medication. It would temporarily lessen my daydreams until the dosage stopped working on me. (I eventually quit the medication because it wasn't really helping for ADHD and I had strong side effects.)

Things that help me daydream more are being tired or unmotivated. When I have difficult or complicated tasks to do, I procrastinate by daydreaming.

What makes your daydreams more productive?
I USED to believe that my daydreams were productive, because I wanted to write a novel, and people praised me for my imagination. However, after many failed attempts to write a novel, I realized a few things. One is that DDing brings more consequences than benefits and that great imaginations are not 'gifts' / 'talents' when they become addictions.


What makes your daydreams feel less productive?
When I realize that I waste time instead of accomplishing things. And that the daydreams will never amount to anything.


When do you leave your daydreams feeling better & more charged?
Sometimes I feel charged after daydreaming about characters singing and dancing to energetic songs, as if I'm listening to the songs for real.


What makes them leave you feeling more sluggish?
Here is one thing I notice about me waking up. ***probably TMI*** Nearly every single day, when I try to get out of bed, I end up laying in bed for a while. And while I lay in bed, I addictively daydream about sex (gross I know). When I get out of bed, I feel absolutely sluggish. Not a good way to start mornings.


What helps you feel stronger?
Knowing that I'm still healthy and young.


What helps you feel safer?
Besides having basic needs met (shelter, food, clothes, blah blah blah) I don't really trust myself or anyone else. So I feel kind of 'unsafe.'

What helps you feel more confident?
Running, success, and drinking coffee. However, I usually lack self-confidence

Meditation helps. It helps me stay in the moment. After about a week or more of steady meditation 15-30 minutes a day. I am way more presence and Daydreaming way less.

Nothing really helped me until I finally figured out I have ADD/ADHD

Aside from all the trouble with mind wandering/daydreaming, inability to focus on detailed things, problems following instructions, and distraction, one of the characteristics is Hyperfocus. It's single-minded concentration on something that especially interests you (or can be work/study). You can do it for hours and hours, oblivious to everything else. To me it feels being under a spell, and I can't drag myself away even if I want to. That's exactly what it feels like when I get sucked into daydreams. Generally, people talk about how kids do this with things like video games, but it can be for anything. Combine Hyperfocus with tons of creative imagination and a shy, inward personality -- you end up spending hours entranced by whatever story is going on in your head.

(For whatever reason, Hyperfocus isn't in the official diagnostic symptom list, but it's otherwise commonly recognized.)

Anyway, here some symptoms of ADHD -- Inattentive Type that forum members might recognize.

  • Inattentive Type people tend to be shy, introspective, passive, and/or withdrawn side. And also very creative.
  • Messy and scatterbrained -- A lot of difficulty with everyday functioning, like cooking, cleaning, getting dressed, fixing hair and make-up. Also forgetting appointments, trouble following a budget, at work and school, and all the other things that go along with being disorganized, and always drifting off.
  • Motivation problems -- A lot of difficulty getting started, keeping on, and finishing things
  • Disorganized thinking
  • Anxiety -- social, general, and/or any specific things
  • Depression and low self esteem. (It can also accompany bipolar disorder.)
  • Obsessive-compulsiveness -- a way to cope with anxiety about forgetting things, being perpetually messy ...
  • Easily overstimulated -- overwhelmed by busy, crowded, new, noisy situations
  • Sensory processing/integration problems -- can be very sensitive to noise, light, rough materials, etc
  • Problems with social relationships -- for one thing, by not being able to pay full attention and often changing the subject, people get put off and may think you can't understand their feelings. Then you start to think that too. This often turns into social anxiety, and then you develop more and more awkwardness...
  • Hyperfocus, especially on certain subjects of special interest to you
  • Restless movement / fidgeting -- a lot of forum members talk about moving in certain ways when they daydream, like pacing, rocking, gesturing... 
  • Emotional reactivity -- having extreme or excessive emotional reactions
  • Self medication with coffee and other caffeinated drinks or other kinds of stimulants (can become coffee many times a day, for instance)

What helps make your life better?

I'm full-time employed currently at Burger King and currently looking for an IT related job. My life is kind of messy, right now video games (I like the Nintendo Switch) are the only thing helping me with my anxiety issues as a result of both sensory processing disorder and maladaptive daydreaming. I'm also seeing a therapist that although I'm not ready to tell about the maladaptive daydreaming has been working wonders with my anxiety problems.

What helps you feel like you’re living a more fulfilling life?

The feeling that I might actually be starting to get my shit together. Like I said above my life is kind of messy right now, but I'm slowly and surely coming along.

What helps you feel like you’re in control?

I'm beginning to understand the difference between honesty and insult, it's tough not flying off the handle at people that love me, but sometimes the truth hurts. That's one of my biggest struggles with sensory processing disorder.

What helps you daydream less & what helps you daydream more?

Being surrounded by real people keeps my daydreams more silent, it doesn't completely stop them. I like to pace and mentally "act out" my daydreams which would make most people think I'm having delusions.

Anything visual is my biggest trigger for daydreaming. For example I could be scrolling through Amazon and see an item that correlates with my current daydream character and boom, my character now has that item.

What makes your daydreams more productive?

My daydreams are more productive when I'm alone without tasks to worry about (work, deadlines, homework, etc.)

What makes your daydreams feel less productive?

If I have a lot of real time tasks to get done, my daydreams occur more as a mental coping mechanism for my anxiety. It's difficult to do sometimes, but I manage to try and save those daydreams for after the tasks are complete

When do you leave your daydreams feeling better & more charged?

If I'm daydreaming as a result of stewing over something I'm usually super energized.

What makes them leave you feeling more sluggish?

If my brain has already been taxed a lot of it's power it will daydream things that are meant to be while laying down.

What helps you feel stronger?

Having power over my problems when many are present.

What helps you feel safer?

Being surrounded by people I know that I can trust.

What helps you feel more confident?

I know not everyone believes on God, but prayer. Praying always helps take away any discouragement.

Meditation definitely helps, but I have a very hard time with the traditional sitting meditation. It's easier to do after some exercise that wears me out enough. Mantras help a lot too. Lately I have been trying to just stay mindful during the course of the day -- listening to the noises around me, pausing for three breaths to take a step back... I put it as a reminder that stays on the screen of my phone, so I see it whenever I go to use it.

It builds on itself and gets easier -- becomes less of an effort or chore.

Kina Lowes said:

Meditation helps. It helps me stay in the moment. After about a week or more of steady meditation 15-30 minutes a day. I am way more presence and Daydreaming way less.

Prayer does help, even if you don't have any specifically religious belief. Just out to the universe. The serenity prayer from AA is a good one to do. It helps to shift things in a positive direction.

Nicole said:

What helps make your life better?

I'm full-time employed currently at Burger King and currently looking for an IT related job. My life is kind of messy, right now video games (I like the Nintendo Switch) are the only thing helping me with my anxiety issues as a result of both sensory processing disorder and maladaptive daydreaming. I'm also seeing a therapist that although I'm not ready to tell about the maladaptive daydreaming has been working wonders with my anxiety problems.

What helps you feel like you’re living a more fulfilling life?

The feeling that I might actually be starting to get my shit together. Like I said above my life is kind of messy right now, but I'm slowly and surely coming along.

What helps you feel like you’re in control?

I'm beginning to understand the difference between honesty and insult, it's tough not flying off the handle at people that love me, but sometimes the truth hurts. That's one of my biggest struggles with sensory processing disorder.

What helps you daydream less & what helps you daydream more?

Being surrounded by real people keeps my daydreams more silent, it doesn't completely stop them. I like to pace and mentally "act out" my daydreams which would make most people think I'm having delusions.

Anything visual is my biggest trigger for daydreaming. For example I could be scrolling through Amazon and see an item that correlates with my current daydream character and boom, my character now has that item.

What makes your daydreams more productive?

My daydreams are more productive when I'm alone without tasks to worry about (work, deadlines, homework, etc.)

What makes your daydreams feel less productive?

If I have a lot of real time tasks to get done, my daydreams occur more as a mental coping mechanism for my anxiety. It's difficult to do sometimes, but I manage to try and save those daydreams for after the tasks are complete

When do you leave your daydreams feeling better & more charged?

If I'm daydreaming as a result of stewing over something I'm usually super energized.

What makes them leave you feeling more sluggish?

If my brain has already been taxed a lot of it's power it will daydream things that are meant to be while laying down.

What helps you feel stronger?

Having power over my problems when many are present.

What helps you feel safer?

Being surrounded by people I know that I can trust.

What helps you feel more confident?

I know not everyone believes on God, but prayer. Praying always helps take away any discouragement.

I know productive and meaningful distractions allow me to feel fulfilled, control the amount of daydreaming, and even use the daydreams to my advantage: if I didn't have this disorder, I wouldn't need to be so productive and entertained by my distractions.

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