We’ve lost count of the amount of times we’ve told ourselves to think positive, especially when we’re feeling a bit down. But a new study has now revealed that all that positive thinking you’ve been doing can actually be doing more harm than good – in fact, it can even make you depressed.
Talking openly about depression has been somewhat of a taboo in the past, but with more celebrities like Hayden Panettiere and Drew Barrymore talking about their personal struggles with postpartum depression, it’s now more socially acceptable than ever to be open about the disorder.
We’ve all been guilty of floating off into a daydream or two when we’re feeling a bit stressed, or just need a bit of a distraction. But scientists are claiming that daydreaming for escapism only provides a short-term mood boost, and can eventually lead to increased sadness in the long-run. Shocking, right?
It’s particularly dangerous when we are indulging in ‘fantasies’, rather than things we can realistically achieve. So you might want to put a pause on all that daydreaming you’ve been doing about marrying Leonardo Dicaprio, then…
But there IS a silver lining. Doctor Gabriele Oettingen and other researchers from the study have developed a way to overcome this stumbling block – by creating a ‘fantasy framework’ that will help you to curb that post-daydream depression.
The thought process, called WOOP (Wish, Outcome, Obstacle, Plan) is a visualisation exercise which helps you gain insight into your dreams and clearly identify any obstacles that stand in the way of making them come true.
All you need to do is take that wish or dream you have, imagine what would happen if it came true, and then identify any possible obstacles that might stand in the way. Next, simply make a plan of what to do should any of those obstacles arise.
Sounds so simple right? We know, what’s even better is that you can now apply it to your day to day life with the program now being available as an app.
Phew! We’re off to continue daydreaming of having a diva strut and hair flick as fabulous as Beyonce, then…