So, you want to boost your creativity, calm your blood pressure, melt stress and raise the happiness quotient of your closest relationships?
Don’t do anything — just haul out the hammock, pour a tall glass of iced tea (unsweetened, of course) and send your gray cells off on a mini-vacation.
Daydreaming has a slew of surprising benefits:
Better problem-solving: When Canadian researchers watched brain scans of people as they daydreamed, they discovered that their brain’s “executive networks” lit up like Christmas trees when they weren’t thinking about anything in particular. These networks are a combo of high-powered brain areas that work together to find answers to tricky questions.
Closer relationships: Daydreaming about the good things you’ve done or would like to do together produces more of the “glue” that bonds happy marriages and makes friendships and parent-child relationships tight.
More compassion: Daydreaming increases compassion and a sense of connection with others.
Less stress: Related studies have shown to bust stress, reduce your blood pressure, ease your pain and bolster your immune system.