Date: Wednesday, March 21, 3:00PM – 4:30PM

Location: 2203 Dunton Tower

Speaker:  Eve-Marie Blouin-Hudon – Carleton University Psychology

Title: Exploring the interplay between daydream content, personality, and well-being

Abstract:

Daydreaming -also understood as a decoupling of attention from the external environment and a focus of attention on the internal environment -relates to human experience in a variety of ways (e.g., task performance, emotions, psychological well-being). In this talk, I will first review research on daydreaming, personality, and well-being. Specifically, a fixed effect meta-analysis (over 4 studies) demonstrated that individuals who are high on the openness to experience trait were also more likely to report daydreams that contained problem-solving and positive mental images. These daydreams were also associated with a greater sense of personal growth, purpose in life, and positive affect.

Alternatively, individuals high on neuroticism reported more guilty and disphoric daydreams, which were associated with depression, negative affect, and lower psychological well-being. Individuals high on introspection were more likely to experience both types of daydreams. Secondly, I will review ongoing research exploring how daydreaming content –whether positive or negative –is organized within consciousness. On the one hand, associative elements are more likely to be present in daydreams when people are exposed to unique external stimuli. Because of this, people are likely to report daydreams with higher emotions and more specific event details. On the other hand, daydreams are likely to contain broader narrative elements (e.g., goals, values, desires) when people have thought about their life story and current concerns. I discuss how exploring daydream content in this way can help researchers better understand the role that daydreaming plays in updating the self-concept, and in well-being.

 

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