F antasy Football, Fantasy 5, Final Fantasy: millions of people crave fantasy, and they’re coughing up large dough for satisfaction. Are you longing for a little yourself? Here’s an angle that won’t cost you a dime…
…humans can’t get by on the tiny morsel of satisfaction provided by everyday reality.
I’m sure you also know that without intervention, that combo can blow one’s anxiety meter to smithereens – especially at 70 miles an hour.
So did I open a cold one? No. Pull over? Nah. Pop a Klonnie? Nope.
I grabbed fantasy out of my mobile toolbox. It occupied my mind, soothed me, and steered me around a massive pothole.
Let’s take a look…
What is fantasy?
Seems to me a good place to start is with a definition of fantasy. Here’s one of Merriam-Webster’s…
The power or process of creating especially unrealistic or improbable mental images in response to a psychological need.
Though I didn’t reveal my particular “mental images,” they sure as heck were “in response to a psychological need.”
A little deeper
Putting our legs deeper in the water, fantasies, which originate in both the conscious and unconscious mind, are imagined phenomena that often express highly guarded desires or aims.
They can go well beyond reality or exist within its context. They can be beneficial or destructive.
For instance, we can use our fantasies for healthy diversion, perspective, and relaxation. And we can use them to fuel and express our creativity.
On the other side of the coin, we can use our fantasies to imagine, say, we’re progressing well in life – even being depression or anxiety free – all along doing nothing in reality to make any of it happen.
To the destructive extreme is fantasy prone personality, a trait that brings a lifelong reliance upon fantasy.
Fantasy and Freud
Sigmund Freud considered fantasy a powerful defense mechanism, so you can bet he was all over it.
Freud was convinced that we construct our fantasies around multiple wishes, which are often repressed.
And our designs are so intricate that we weave in assorted disguises to remain unaware of the defensive nature of our work.
In fact, Freud believed it all goes down in sort of a third person manner, omitting the “I,” so we can access the fantasy from multiple doors and angles.
As you might imagine, Freud submitted sexuality, going back to infancy, was deeply involved in fantasy. Trust me, it becomes very complicated, hence I’ll leave you to your research.
Anyway, the bottom-line for Freud was his belief that humans can’t get by on the tiny morsel of satisfaction provided by everyday reality.
I can buy that. And as a result, we turn to fantasy unconsciously or with intention.
Speaking of which…
Coping techniques and fantasy
How do you feel about coping techniques? That may seem like a silly question, but in lieu of implementing relief interventions, many wrestling with a mood or anxiety disorder choose to endure the match.
The mobile toolbox
Do you stay prepared for emotional and mental hits and crises? If so, does that include keeping a mobile toolbox with you at all times – just like your phone?
In fact, you could actually use your phone as one of your tools, as well as your toolbox.
I keep a variety of time and situation-tested coping strategies and techniques, including fantasy, in the toolbox of my mind and phone.
So if you keep a mobile toolbox with you, what’s in it? And when was the last time you took an inventory to make sure it’s properly stocked?
For that matter, when was the last time you opened it – or pulled something from it?
Back to fantasy
Bringing it back to fantasy, it really is an effective coping technique. I’m recommending you keep it in your toolbox.
Try experimenting with a few so you can you see which ones hold the most productive power, while allowing you to keep your mind on the business at hand.
And you can develop more intense fantasies for when you don’t have to keep your mind on anything – but a refreshing break.
One more thing. Take note of the content of your fantasies. Remember, they often express highly guarded desires or aims. That presents a great learning opportunity.
Won’t cost you a dime
Peacefully coexisting with a mood or anxiety disorder requires extraordinary amounts of courage and creativity. And a good portion of that creativity can be expressed in our selection and implementation of coping techniques.
Fantasy works well for me when I’m in a tough spot. And just knowing it’s on call 24/7 is comforting.
So toss fantasy in your toolbox and make good use of it. Won’t cost you a dime.
Speaking of freebies, go ahead and take a look at those Chipur info and inspiration titles.
And be sure to read what I consider to be the follow up to this piece “I just want to be happy. Is that asking for too much?”
(Freud image: history.com)