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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Do any of you guys relate to escapist tendencies? I struggled with this a lot in my early adult years, but I've doing it just a little less. In my early years~ childhood and adolescence ~ i had a lot of fantasies and stories/plot lines of alternative lives in my imagination. I still do this as I get older, though now my escapism is focused more on other activities. although I often revert back to these escapist tendencies, things are different when push comes to shove: I face reality head-on cause you know what they say... when the going get tough, the tough get going. still... i realize i do this a lot (moreso than my peers probably) so was just wondering if anyone else relates?

And here's an online definition of escapism:
"Escapism is a way of refocusing one’s attention on things pleasant or enjoyable, as opposed to the hard realities of the everyday world. It can be a healthy means for not getting completely depressed by reality, or in extreme forms, can result in obsessive behaviors that make people completely ignore reality to their detriment."
 

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I'm awful for this. I get so caught up in the machinations inside my head that I start shunning the real world.

I stay locked up inside my own mind so often that the real world pales in importance compared to my imagination.

Unfortunately, I don't know how to stop this. It seems to be something I cannot change. As much as I try, I just can't seem to grasp most concepts of "adult" living. Ah well, c'est la vie.
 

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Yeah, when real life gets really crappy, I'll either pop in a really good flick, or just go to sleep. At least that way I don't have to think about it for a few hours.

I realize that it doesn't solve the problem, but if I'm obsessing over it, and it's a situation I have little to no control over anyway, it at least reduces my anxiety over the entire situation.

I mean, there are times when it is appropriate to take action, but then there are times when no action can be taken. I think it's possible to really wear yourself down fighting impossible battles. Vague, sorry.

There's probably some kind of balance to be struck here. One does have to deal with the real world as the real world requires, but in the meantime, fantasy is a nice escape.
I mean, other people do drugs, and that's a lot more damaging getting lost in a daydream.
 

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"Escapism is a way of refocusing one’s attention on things pleasant or enjoyable, as opposed to the hard realities of the everyday world. It can be a healthy means for not getting completely depressed by reality, or in extreme forms, can result in obsessive behaviors that make people completely ignore reality to their detriment."
Yep, that's what I do. My life has been extremely stressful and disappointing for a very long time, so I engage in quite a lot of what I call "cocooning". I just shut out everything and become obsessed with some thing or other, usually either a book or something involving a screen of some sort.

I think this may have something to do with the INFJ tendencies to be one of the most sensitive of the types. It's a protective mechanism that can sometimes be taken to extremes.
 

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Yeah I have escapist tendencies. I usually retreat into my own fantasy world on a daily basis to recharge and inspire myself. I suppose it's the way I am and since I can't beat it, I might as well use it to my advantage. Whatever image, story, movie I choose to immerse myself in, I try to make sure it is inspiring so that even though I am in lala land, I am subconsciously preparing myself for my return to the real world with greater zest and gusto.

The only problem that occurs is that sometimes I stay in lala land for too long; past the time I set for myself. But I roll with it and see how best I can make up for lost time. :happy:
 

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I don't understand how being perpetually mired in the bullshit of day-to-day existence is somehow supposed to be the better alternative.

About 90% of the crap we put up with in daily living is over-aggrandized nonsense. Bureaucracy, being 'trapped' in a bad relationship, being 'trapped' in a bad job, dealing with personal drama, dealing with other people's drama (I personally just nod my head and go 'yeah wow that's insane' a lot until they stop talking about it), etc. etc.

If you think about it, though (taking the US as my working example, other countries differ for better or for worse), most of modern living isn't really geared towards making your life happy, but rather on making you more productive/efficient, and an overwhelmingly large part of life/society is shaped around that notion. Socializing, for example, stops being about hanging out with people and having a good time and making friends, but is now often about 'networking'. Watching movies feels to me like it's a social requirement, and not even necessarily about wanting to watch them. Same with reading books (I love reading books, I don't like having a Reading List for Upstanding Citizens). What nonsense is this? It's no wonder people want to escape from this kind of 'reality'.

I think it's better to look at why you feel the need to escape, rather than the methods of your escape. Look at the problem, not the symptom.
 

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I would rather spend my time on Personality Cafe than resort to something as juvenile as escapism.

Seriously though, so-called escapism does play a large role in my life. My question: Why not minimize the impact and requirements of the real world and make escapism a way of life? Of course, this is not always immediately possible, and for some may not be a viable option at all. It may not be possible to rid oneself of all the world's many tedious responsibilities and trivialities, but I do think that the vast majority of these can be done away with.

I do not see escapism as a problem. Personally, I want to spend as little time in the "real" world as possible (though I do like to visit on occasion). Nothing needs to get done beyond finding some manner of procuring one's daily sustenance. All else we take upon ourselves. Why should any other external diversion compel me to action...especially those thrust upon me by people who take this stuff seriously? For the past few years I have been orchestrating my life in such a manner that, with a little luck, I can ignore all of the tedious crap and pursue a life of literal and figurative escapism; one in which I do not have to do anything. I do not want to get into the myriad details, but I do think such a plan is not as far outside the realm of possibility as many think.

As Tom Waits says "I don't wanna grow up."
 

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Agreeing with the above 2 posters.
I too, see no wrong in escaping the interminable dross of everyday life, or 'real life' as they so laughingly call it.
To me its nothing more than a socially sanctioned form of slavery. Humanity as drones, worker bees,.. pushed to their productive limits, forced into education from a young age to train them for their work slavery in the coming years, then to add insult to injury, too little time in retirement to enjoy life before old age and ill health start to set in.
Who wouldnt want to escape from that in any way they could?
The majority of people dont even really seem to understand their bondage, and even play their roles in upholding the status quo, truly brainwashed individuals, who instead get their emotional stimulation from bad relationships, bad freindships, and other unsavory means.
These people, the 'down to earth' 'real' people who manage so well in every day life, are the drones to me. I lose the will to live after 10 minutes in close proximity to these people , with their inconsequential gossip about 'such and such in the next office who got a promotion over such and such, and how did they manage it, wink, wink, nudge nudge.'
I want to die if Im stuck in this kind of small talk hell for more than a few minutes.
I too, am trying to pare down my existence of all external crap, as much as I possibly can, beyond means of survival and sustenance, to live my much more pleasant escapist life :)
G. x
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I don't understand how being perpetually mired in the bullshit of day-to-day existence is somehow supposed to be the better alternative.

About 90% of the crap we put up with in daily living is over-aggrandized nonsense. Bureaucracy, being 'trapped' in a bad relationship, being 'trapped' in a bad job, dealing with personal drama, dealing with other people's drama (I personally just nod my head and go 'yeah wow that's insane' a lot until they stop talking about it), etc. etc.

If you think about it, though (taking the US as my working example, other countries differ for better or for worse), most of modern living isn't really geared towards making your life happy, but rather on making you more productive/efficient, and an overwhelmingly large part of life/society is shaped around that notion. Socializing, for example, stops being about hanging out with people and having a good time and making friends, but is now often about 'networking'. Watching movies feels to me like it's a social requirement, and not even necessarily about wanting to watch them. Same with reading books (I love reading books, I don't like having a Reading List for Upstanding Citizens). What nonsense is this? It's no wonder people want to escape from this kind of 'reality'.

I think it's better to look at why you feel the need to escape, rather than the methods of your escape. Look at the problem, not the symptom.
Agreed~ and i relate to alll the posts on here so far.

I agree with this, especially: "I think it's better to look at why you feel the need to escape, rather than the methods of your escape. Look at the problem, not the symptom."

However....there are many times, where I've analyzed the problem to the point of anxiety, so escapism (for me) is a healthy way of trying to reduce this anxiety. -> "I realize that it doesn't solve the problem, but if I'm obsessing over it, and it's a situation I have little to no control over anyway, it at least reduces my anxiety over the entire situation.... then there are times when no action can be taken. I think it's possible to really wear yourself down fighting impossible battles." Sometimes I busy myself doing other "productive" things or trying to solve the problem, but then, there are times where I need this unwind time while I wait on the results or something.

For me... when I unwind...I usually daydream, lose myself in a few films (old ones), or sleeep. Doctor's prescription for the INFJ. An escapist moment a day, keeps the doctor awayyy
 

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I don't understand how being perpetually mired in the bullshit of day-to-day existence is somehow supposed to be the better alternative.

About 90% of the crap we put up with in daily living is over-aggrandized nonsense. Bureaucracy, being 'trapped' in a bad relationship, being 'trapped' in a bad job, dealing with personal drama, dealing with other people's drama (I personally just nod my head and go 'yeah wow that's insane' a lot until they stop talking about it), etc. etc.

If you think about it, though (taking the US as my working example, other countries differ for better or for worse), most of modern living isn't really geared towards making your life happy, but rather on making you more productive/efficient, and an overwhelmingly large part of life/society is shaped around that notion. Socializing, for example, stops being about hanging out with people and having a good time and making friends, but is now often about 'networking'. Watching movies feels to me like it's a social requirement, and not even necessarily about wanting to watch them. Same with reading books (I love reading books, I don't like having a Reading List for Upstanding Citizens). What nonsense is this? It's no wonder people want to escape from this kind of 'reality'.

I think it's better to look at why you feel the need to escape, rather than the methods of your escape. Look at the problem, not the symptom.
This world now makes one feel like they are suppose to be a robot and not a being! This social system is one that I buck up against, yet here I am on a forum on a computer! I wonder how a simpler way of life can be and still have modern technology. I know that is probably impossible. It is just that I would rather have a simpler way of living...not having all the robotic demands from society thrust upon one. Do I make any sense? I am sure I'm being a bit vague. I am not one who can express their deeper thoughts on the spur of the moment. I know what I feel. I have to take time to think to organize my words. Well, at any rate, I do like what you have written. :happy:

As for looking at the problem not at the sympton, that is good advice. I agree that this will create a nice balance. Yet, there is nothing wrong with escaping for a little while to recharge, as long as, one knows how to come back. For me dsitraction is a good thing. When I am thinking, writing, etc, I listen to music or go outside. I hear the background noise. This is enough distraction that grounds me. Keeps me connected to the world around me and not just in my mind.. Even when I am working, the music playing & people all around keeps me grounded. I give more of me this way. Sort of a grounding. Some say silence is golden. For me a very short period of time, it can be good. For the most part, I would drive my self right out of my mind with out the connection and that is a place I would rather not be! :happy:
 

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Yeah I have escapist tendencies. I usually retreat into my own fantasy world on a daily basis to recharge and inspire myself. I suppose it's the way I am and since I can't beat it, I might as well use it to my advantage. Whatever image, story, movie I choose to immerse myself in, I try to make sure it is inspiring so that even though I am in lala land, I am subconsciously preparing myself for my return to the real world with greater zest and gusto.

The only problem that occurs is that sometimes I stay in lala land for too long; past the time I set for myself. But I roll with it and see how best I can make up for lost time. :happy:
Lost time? I don't believe it to be lost time. Maybe, it is just that you needed to go past the time you set for yourself at that time? I believe rolling with it is a healthy way to deal with this occurrence. I don't think that it is healthy, if one battles with everything about themselves. I don't believe you do this Vizier. I feel that you have your head set straight on your shoulders. And, you are a good & honest man to boot!
 

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Lost time? I don't believe it to be lost time. Maybe, it is just that you needed to go past the time you set for yourself at that time? I believe rolling with it is a healthy way to deal with this occurence. I don't think if one battles with everything about themselves is healthy. I don't believe you do this Vizier. I feel that you have your head set straight on your shoulders. And, you are a good & honest man to boot!
You're perceptive as always Dalien (and good with words too :p). Yes I learned not to battle everything about myself. In fact I prefer to go with the flow and actually be like water. Hehe, do correct my grammar if you have the time. :tongue:

I found that once I learned to accept myself, I no longer waste energy fighting myself and hence I can do so much more. Not to mention I am more at peace too.
 

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I don't mean to say that escapism is bad, because in moderation it's not. It's important to have downtime, even when you're taking a break from something you love doing.

It's very easy to get addicted to these escapist methods, though - take your typical WoW addict, for example. (WoW ruins lives)
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I don't mean to say that escapism is bad, because in moderation it's not. It's important to have downtime, even when you're taking a break from something you love doing.

It's very easy to get addicted to these escapist methods, though - take your typical WoW addict, for example. (WoW ruins lives)
Do you play WoW???? I've had friends that played... they'd leave lecture/social gatherings to go for a raid or something lol...
 

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I don't mean to say that escapism is bad, because in moderation it's not. It's important to have downtime, even when you're taking a break from something you love doing.
Oh my, I certainly did not take your post as if you were saying that escapism was bad. I was just clarifying my thoughts as I wrote them. I do believe, like you, that escapism in moderation it is a good thing. :happy:
 

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I would rather spend my time on Personality Cafe than resort to something as juvenile as escapism.

Seriously though, so-called escapism does play a large role in my life. My question: Why not minimize the impact and requirements of the real world and make escapism a way of life? Of course, this is not always immediately possible, and for some may not be a viable option at all. It may not be possible to rid oneself of all the world's many tedious responsibilities and trivialities, but I do think that the vast majority of these can be done away with.

I do not see escapism as a problem. Personally, I want to spend as little time in the "real" world as possible (though I do like to visit on occasion). Nothing needs to get done beyond finding some manner of procuring one's daily sustenance. All else we take upon ourselves. Why should any other external diversion compel me to action...especially those thrust upon me by people who take this stuff seriously? For the past few years I have been orchestrating my life in such a manner that, with a little luck, I can ignore all of the tedious crap and pursue a life of literal and figurative escapism; one in which I do not have to do anything. I do not want to get into the myriad details, but I do think such a plan is not as far outside the realm of possibility as many think.

As Tom Waits says "I don't wanna grow up."
HorribleAesthete, A hermit's life?
 

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Yes I'd say I do have escapist tendencies, but as mentioned earlier there are good reasons for it. I see it more as a refusal to adapt to the world. I'd want to change it, but since that is out of my reach, there is not much choice left but to evade ...

As a child I dreamed about the world being divided between the good people and the bad people. There would half of the world for each of those groups.
Today I'd like to see it divided between those who want to go along with the "rat race" and those who like to try it differently. I can't wait for the day the mass realises you just run out of energy or bump into walls like that ... why the rush ? why the hurry ? why always more ?

If only the world adapted to me, instead of the other way around :laughing:
 
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