Dreaming is one of my favorite pastimes.
As an ISFJ personality type, many may assume that imagining the possibilities is not an easy task for me because of my preference to have concrete decisions, tied up loose ends, and closure rather than exploring the options. But if there are no decisions to be made or issues to discuss, then exploring options and dreaming up what could be can be quite fun.
As a kid I used to keep a notebook for all of my random ideas and brainstorm sessions. I’d make up games to play with myself on car trips. I’d write lists and lists of ideas of what my new email address or AIM screen name could be. I’d draw up plans for how my sisters and I could rearrange the furniture in our room.
It’s part of why I liked writing stories when I was younger – it wasn’t necessarily the story itself I enjoyed, but the process. I loved coming up with possible names for characters, imagining what kind of background they’d have and how that would affect their decisions and relationships with other characters. I liked dreaming about where they would live, what conflicts would arise, and how they would deal with them.
I’ve been learning that some of my practice in using my imagination as a kid has become an extremely useful skill as an adult. To this day when I’m in a car I’ll often look at the drivers and cars around me at a stop light or on the highway and imagine where they could be going and what kind of craziness is going on in their life. It’s helpful when I’m behind someone driving really slow or someone who cuts me off or does something annoying because instead of assuming they’re being malicious or stupid, I try to gain some perspective and give the benefit of the doubt and imagine some possible rational reason behind their action.
It’s often the little annoying things in life that build up and make for an awful day, so every opportunity to cancel out the negative moments helps a bit. So I’d recommend keeping your imagination in your tool belt.