The tough part of being mindfully present when you are an introverted daydreamer is separating yourself as the existential human you are in reality aside from the inner playwright tinkering away within your brain. Daydreamers always have that anticipatory screenwriter designating mental energy, time, and focus onto future “could be” situations. The screenwriter’s role is to fantasize, modify, and mentally record dynamic imaginary scenarios onto the false memory film reel of the brain. They hone a future-oriented duty to wonder how events might transpire in the best possible way- “best” determined by an idealism based on multi-dimensional enlightenment from both profound and simple life lessons, not the same “best” seen as consecutive achievements of one-dimensional pleasurable experiences. Like any good book, the anticipatory daydreamer cares about writing your lifestory so that it conveys important messages and strikes as interesting.
But here’s where the dilemma arises. You are not an omniscient author of your lifestory. You cannot control or inherently understand the underlying workings of the external world, other people, and forces. You can only control and understand you.
To be grounded with your head in the clouds poses an impossible Schrödinger’s cat kind of dual state. A grounded, mindful person makes the most out of their experiences by coexisting with nature, observing and recognizing the sensations in the present. Meanwhile, a person with their head in the clouds is figuring out how to control and create nature- too busy being a superhuman scribe to be an affected character in the cosmic blueprint. Daydreamers are omniscient playwrights heedlessly attempting to define real people and real settings into character roles and plot lines. They are compelled to think up ways in which events will unfold, how Person A will come to meet Person B, and what the underlying motives for all parties involved might be… these are tasks no human being can do with their reality outside of penning a fictitious narrative on the sidelines.
There is an anticipation in the daydreamer that can inappropriately bleed into the unfolding plain of the material world. This is not to say that anticipating life’s experiences is unhealthy- anticipation serves a very healthy purpose when used appropriately. You should anticipate your actions, reactions, and emotions, not those belonging to other people. There is a difference between anticipating how you will deal with given situations versus anticipating how the world will deal out situations. It is not your job to think up who you are going to meet at a certain setting or how people are going to feel about your choices. Leave the ‘how’ component to whatever omniscient forces dictate the universe. Focus on your current goal, focus on being the best you can be in this very moment, and do not focus on how every future person, place, or thing could play out in relevance to your goal until that person, place, or thing has stumbled its way into the reality of your present state. Daydreaming can be an exhilarating activity that can turn into worthwhile projects about alternate characters leading alternate lives, but daydreaming is not how you make the most of the life you are currently leading.
-Valerie Parente (10-29-16)