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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I was diagnosed with maladaptive daydreaming not too long ago.
Since I was really small, I´ve spent more time in daydreams than in the "real world". I would (and still kind of do from time to time) pace around my room or run around my house fueling some sort of dream.
I am becoming more conscious of everything that goes hand in hand with this: lack of presence, need to escape etc etc
one thing that did come to mind was that it could be correlated to typing. Really analyzing what happens when I go to a whole other realm to enter into these states, it´s almost like Ni is just flowing lose through visual imagery with lots of influences of Fe in the fantasy itself, use of Ti to piece everything apart and then back together, and obviously, complete and utter lack of Se.

Have any other fellow INFJs struggled with this addiction? Any suggestions as to how I can control these and keep myself grounded instead of just becoming a slave to my desire to dissociate??
Thank you.
 

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It has been my coping mechanism for far longer than a decade by now. For better or for worse, it doesn't work as well as it did in the past. Perhaps it is a "growing up" thing. I don't consider it much of a struggle. It is definitely not healthy, but I would probably have killed myself by now if I didn't daydream and live with my head inside of fiction so much.

I gotta say though, my mind is very creative and it shows both in my daydreams and actual dreams.
 

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I find that most of my thoughts are daydreams and fantasies. It can be therapeutic in some ways and it comes naturally to me. It's somewhat of a coping/defense mechanism. Doing this helps me to keep positive and I don't think I would be able to completely if I didn't have this ability. Thinking positive thoughts and being optimistic helps but daydreaming and fantasizing adds another layer to it. I have a certain out-of-it quality to me, even when I'm not in this state. Some people may say there is a risk not being grounded in reality but I do understand the difference between fantasy and reality and know it has it's limits.

In some ways it's a form of escapism. Sometimes, I need to go off to my own little world to keep sane. I know there is a boundary on that and reality but it's still something I do. Sometimes I pace around as well. I'm able to control it when I'm in a public place but when I'm in a comfortable private environment or taking a walk, it usually happens. It probably is related to Ni-fe.
 
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Any suggestions as to how I can control these and keep myself grounded
Do you have any hobbies which encourage attention to the body? Yoga, weightlifting, dancing, etc...

Spending some time giving attention to what's going on in the body can help ground one into presence. Not trying to control or get rid of anything. Just noticing what's already here.

Breathing is always here and now. The feeling of air in my nostrils. The feeling of my tongue in my mouth. The sensations in my body are always here and now. The sense of aliveness in the hands and feet. The feeling of the keyboard on my fingertips. The feeling of the desk on my arm. The feeling of the chair I'm sitting in.

Grounding myself into the moment is more like listening or observing than it is like control. I investigate my experience the way I would investigate a mystery dish if it was my task to identify all the ingredients. It's an exploration with an attitude of open curiosity. What all is here?

One exercise I like to do is to stand at attention like a soldier (yoga/tadasana). And then I keep watch and I see from what direction forces come to capture my attention. I was just reading about an American Indian disciplinary technique for warriors where they would stand all day on a hill and not move except to keep facing the sun. I don't recommend staring at the sun all day but it can be an interesting experiment to try to stand there and see what forces come and to see exactly how those forces seize one's attention.

Another thing I've found really important is to not beat myself up about falling into thought. If I punish myself every time I snap out of a thought or wake up out of a daydream then I can actually condition myself in such a way that I decrease the occurrence of that movement attention which wakes me up to the moment. What I do instead is every time I snap back to reality or wake up out of a daydream I thank the movement of attention which was responsible for bringing me back.

"I could've been lost in thought forever but something brought me back. Thank you." It sets things up inside myself such that I positively reinforce what I want, which is awakeness and clarity and presence and aliveness.


need to escape
this addiction
desire to dissociate
If there's some particular constellation of feelings or fears which is continually propelling attention back into daydreaming then you may need to do some inner experience work or seek the help of a therapist to resolve that.

Difficult moments, especially when we're children, can lead to the creation of spontaneous coping strategies. These coping strategies involve the formation of hidden or unconscious beliefs which help the child in a particular moment, or in specific situations, but there often comes a point when a particular strategy is no longer helpful or useful and the strategy becomes a hindrance.

If that's the case then recognize that the coping strategy may be coming to the end of its usefulness. Appreciate that it served you at certain points in your life but if it's no longer serving you then recognize that fact.
 

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Yeah I do this too, i listen to music usually and do it kind of like jumping around the room in this not so agressive way. Sometimes it happens by itself while im taking walks or jogging but I think that happens cus the acitivity in itself is so boring so the mind starts to wander. I often daydream about fantasies that could happen in real life and usually related to my personal goals, not like some riding a dragon trough the galaxy type of fantasies :D
 
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