A bigger brain capacity enables daydreamers to let their minds wander off, a study has suggested.
According to Georgia Tech researchers, contrary to perception that daydreamers' brains fail to control thoughts or are inefficient, it is more about the brain's capacity that allows the mind to wander.
“People with efficient brains may have too much brain capacity to stop their minds from wandering,” Professor Eric Schumacher, lead author of the study, was quoted as saying.
In the study, researchers involved 100 participants and had them undergo MRI studies while looking at a fixed point for five minutes.
This is to study how brain regions work while at rest and awake, and how they work with one another, according to Christine Godwin, one of the authors.
“Interestingly, research has suggested that these same brain patterns measured during these states are related to different cognitive abilities,” she further explained.
“These regions of the brain are called the default mode network, which is related to internally focused attention and mind-wandering,” noted Dr Schumacher.
The participants likewise took tests that analysed their intellectual and creative ability, as well as answered a questionnaire on how much they spent daydreaming.
“People who had higher creativity, higher fluid intelligence, and higher connectivity in their default mode networks tended to mind-wander more,” said the Dr Schumacher, pertaining to the results, which compared the MRI results and the examination results.
He also noted that people tend to associate “daydreaming” with inefficient brains, or unable to focus. It’s possible that their brains are simply more efficient that they perform tasks more quickly, then move on to something else.
He said that if one is able to “zone out” during conversations, but go right back in without feeling something is “missed” out, then it is likely that the brain is working efficiently. MIMS