Fantasizing about someone meaning
Are You Fantasising About Someone? The All-Important Reality Check
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Are you fantasising about someone? Living the dream you want with them? It’s possible that it’s happening, you know, and you may not even realise it.
See, when you think of fantasising, you might think “oh, like a sexual fantasy?!” But it’s nothing like that. We fantasise all the time. It’s just using your imagination to picture something you want. It’s easy to do – especially when you start falling for someone.
You’ve met someone who you think is really quite awesome, they’re making you feel things you haven’t felt in a long time. You feel connected to them, and excited about your potential future.
You find yourself daydreaming about them, replaying things through your mind when you go to bed, thinking about certain scenarios that you’d love to happen.
You’re basically building up the perfect relationship which you soon hope will unfold.
The problem is, this can put you in pretty dangerous territory. So in this article, we’re going to quickly run through:
1) What fantasising is.
2) If you’re fantasising about someone.
3) What to do about it.
Uh huh, we’re getting to grips with this, before it spirals out of control.
So first up, what exactly is fantasising? Well, by definition, fantasising is when you “indulge in daydreaming about something you desire.”
Which sounds harmless enough, right? (But just you wait and see!) When it comes to your crush, you might find you have fantasies like…
1) The Perfect First Encounter
It’s probably going to be dramatic, romantic and very cute or bold! It’s not how real life works at all, really. But hey, it’s your fantasy – your fairytale, so you’ll make it how you like.
You take what you know about your crush and you build up their character. You picture the way they look, the way they act, the things they say, and you feel all the love and excitement around it.
2) Them Being Crazily In Love With You
Whether it’s the first moments they express their undying love to you, or the romantic gestures they do to show you how much they care.
You want it to happen. So you’re imagining it happening. We’re not having any unrequited feelings here! Instead, you’re getting it all back, and more. (Oh if only, hey!)
3) A Situation or a Scene
Perhaps you have other things going on in your life right now, but there he is – right by your side, doing and saying all the right things. Or maybe your fantasies get a little more exciting.
There’s a problem, a drama – and your man is there, protecting you, defending you. Whatever you want, whatever you crave, whatever you have missing, your fantasies with this person usually fill them and it’s everything you need.
Sound familiar? Uh huh. These are just a few examples. You might find you have sexual fantasies too, but the toughest ones to pull away from are the emotional fantasies.
The Problem With Fantasising
Fantasising about someone can become pretty unhealthy, for a number of reasons.
First up, when you fantasise about someone, you’re building them up in your head – romanticising them, glorifying them, putting them on a pedestal as this dream person.
You’ll start to see them as the person you want them to be, rather than the person they actually are. (Click here to read the signs that this is happening…)
They’ll also begin to consume your mind. Fantasising makes you feel good – which means it can become pretty addictive.
It may start as just a little daydreaming before bed, but end up keeping you up at night, putting them on your mind first thing in the morning and then thinking about them excessively throughout the day…
But girl, you have other things to focus on.
When you fantasise about someone – there’s no balance and it can quickly spiral out of control. You’ll end up just constantly wanting to see the and speak to them, which will honestly drive you insane.
This happens because, even when you’re not fantasising – you still have this attachment to this person. You were basically experiencing the things you wanted.
You know your fantasies aren’t real…
The thing is, your fantasies and reality start to blend together, which means you have a stronger attachment and are more heavily invested in the person than they may actually have “earned” or deserve.
There’s an unhealthy attachment and this can often make you obsess about the person. In some cases you might even find it leads to Obsessive Love Disorder.
See, when it comes to fantasising, the more you do it, the more it takes you away from reality. The better that fantasy makes you feel, the more you want to cling onto it.
This means you might find you’re increasing the intensity of the relationship with the person you’re fantasising about, moving too quickly or clinging onto them, because you don’t want to lose what you think you have, or could have.
This makes you put unrealistic expectations on the other person however, and set them up to disappoint you.
After all, you’re comparing them to this perfect version of them now. So when their actions don’t align with what you want, you will feel confused or hurt, and most probably start to panic.
Because of this, your behaviour will often end up pushing them away. You’re too full-on. Too intense.
And when it then all goes downhill, you’ll also find it even more difficult to get over them, because your rose-tinted glasses are still very firmly on, and you feel the loss more than what it was.
Are You Fantasising About Someone?
I want you to ask yourself now,
- How often do I think about my love interest?
- Do I find myself checking their social media channels or scrolling through their photos?
- How often am I daydreaming about them?
- Do I play through situations before they’ve happened and visualise how I want them to go?
- Are my feelings developing too quickly here?
- Is this person taking over my mind too much?
If you think you are fantasising about someone, whether it’s a crush, a new partner or someone you’ve never even met before, I want you to ask yourself why?
Why do you think you’re doing this? Is this something that’s happened before or something that – now you come to think about – you always seem to do when you meet someone who excites you?
Often we fantasise about someone because we want to feel the way they make us feel in these daydreams. We want that special someone. We crave for that connection. But this is actually only going to make it less likely to happen.
Why It’s Hard To Get Over Someone Once You Start Fanasising
It’s terribly difficult to get over someone if you’ve been fantasising about them, because you pretty much have to let go of what you THOUGHT you had, but which wasn’t really real.
You built this person up so much in your head, you not only have to let go of them, but let go of the dream you so desperately wanted with them.
But what do you do if it’s not reached that point? What do you do if you’re still dating the person you’ve built a fantasy up over?
What To Do If You’re Fantasising About Someone
Well, once you’ve recognised it’s happening, you then have two options:
- Gradually reduce it. Recognise when you’re fantasising and only allow yourself to indulge in a set amount of fantasising every day. Then, gradually make it less and less. This will ease you back to reality.
- Cut it out completely. This is like an addiction, seriously. So if you have to be all or nothing about it – do it. Every time you find yourself building them up in your head, or (re)playing a scenario, stop it. Snap yourself out of it. Do something different to distract yourself.
These tips will help you to become more level headed, so they’re well worth scanning over. Alongside this, you want to get the balance back into your life. To do this, I highly recommend following these steps for how to stop obsessing over the person.
Move straight onto it now and start taking action. Because that’s what it’s all about.
You have the knowledge, the recognition, the understanding around what you’re doing. You know it’s not healthy. So now it’s just about taking action to stop it. Another thing you can do?
Commit to focusing on yourself and your life for a little while.
I know you don’t want to take a step back from this person and the potential relationship, but you also want to go into it the right way, I’m sure.
So spend more time working on yourself, becoming that strong, independent woman you want to be – who knows their worth and knows that they don’t NEED this man to feel the way they want to feel. Do things right. Get into it right from the start.
Trust me. If you can find the strength to step back and do the things you need to do, it will pay back.
I’m not saying to cut this person out of your life, but to just not let them your biggest priority in your life.
Your priority for now, needs to be solely on you. So try to shift your focus and build yourself back up.
The reason you’re fantasising is because you’re craving love, connection and affection. But you have to feel happy enough in yourself, and on your own, so that you don’t compromise on what you want and end up committing to someone who doesn’t fully deserve you.
You’re Not Crazy…
Oh, and you’re not crazy by the way. I really want you to know that.
Many people fantasise about someone, at some point or another. Men included. Just because it’s not spoken about, doesn’t mean it’s not done. So don’t be embarrassed about it.
This also probably hasn’t come from nowhere either. I bet it all started with the guy making all these promises, saying all these cute things, totally whisking you off your feet. Am I right? Or am I right?
The thing is, you have to be aware – so that you notice when he stops pulling his weight and you start making excuses for him.
Don’t cling onto an idea of a fantasy and let it stop you seeing what’s really there.
For more support and guidance, be sure to subscribe to this blog below. I’ll then pop you an email just once every couple of weeks – with the latest posts and recommendations. Take care.
- How To Stop Falling For Someone So Fast
- 10 Signs He’s Actually Just a F*ckboy
- How Long Does It Take To Get To Know Someone?
Are you fantasizing about someone you know? 9 things it means
Are you fantasizing about someone you know?
Are these thoughts mere daydreams that your own conscience can let go of at any time, or are they a secret treasure to be held close and savored?
Regardless of your answer, there’s a good chance that what goes through your mind is completely normal.
We all do it, and there are many reasons why people are generally drawn to the idea of fantasizing about someone they know.
Listen: I can help you learn more about the potential motivations for these types of thoughts and how to cope with them.
So, stop beating yourself up, and let’s get started!
1) It means there’s a deeper meaning to the person’s presence in your life.
First off, if you fantasize about someone you know, then it’s easy to feel like their presence is meaningful, especially if the fantasies with them are positive (for example, if they often involve an attractive co-worker who flirts with you).
There are many ways a person can have meaning in your life, such as the possibility of connecting with them on a deeper level; the possibility they could provide you with something you want or need, or the possibility of them just being someone special who exists in your life.
These feelings may be enough to make fantasizing about someone possible.
In addition to that, fantasizing about someone also helps you process what it is about them that has made them so memorable to you.
2) A highly intuitive advisor confirms it.
The points I’m revealing in this article will give you a good idea about what it means if you’re fantasizing about someone you know.
But could you get even more clarity by speaking to a highly intuitive advisor?
Clearly, you have to find someone you can trust. With so many fake experts out there, it’s important to have a pretty good BS detector.
After going through a messy break up, I recently tried Psychic Source. They provided me with the guidance I needed in life, including who I am meant to be with.
I was actually blown away by how kind, caring, and knowledgeable they were.
Click here to get your own love reading.
A gifted advisor can not only tell you if there could be something more between you and this person, but they can also reveal all your love possibilities.
3) It means you’re curious about what a deeper relationship might be like.
Often, when you fantasize about someone you know, it’s easy to see the potential for a deeper or more meaningful relationship between the two of you.
This can be especially true when both people are interested in each other, or when there is an obvious basis for the connection between them.
For example: if there are mutual friends, a shared hobby, or a connection in the past, there’s a good chance that you both feel it.
People often view this as an exciting opportunity to connect on a deeper level.
You may want to explore the possibility of something more with that person and that’s why you keep fantasizing about them.
Makes sense, right?
4) It could be that you already have something special and intimate with them.
Sometimes, you may fantasize about someone you know because you already feel connected to them in some other way.
Maybe you’re already good friends, or maybe you share a similar spiritual faith.
So, to figure out why they appear in your thoughts, you may want to think about whether you already have an existing connection with this person that you’re looking to deepen.
Actually, it could just be the case that your initial connection was strong enough for you to fantasize about them.
5) It could be that you’re simply feeling an attraction to them.
Sometimes, you may find yourself fantasizing about someone you know because you’re simply attracted to that person: either physically or on an emotional level.
The connection may be new or old, but the physical and emotional appeal of the person is present.
Attraction and interest can motivate people to engage in fantasies about someone they know.
Other times, you may find yourself fantasizing about someone you know because you’re currently feeling comfortable with them; for example, if they have an attractive body or unique personality.
The explanation for your thoughts could be that this person has made you feel more comfortable around them.
The result? Your feelings for them are stronger than usual.
6) It could be that you’re feeling lonely.
The simple truth is that sometimes, we may fantasize about someone we know because they are the first person to come to mind when we’re feeling lonely.
Feeling alone can prompt us to seek out comfort from someone else.
So, when you fantasize about someone you know, it could be that you’re wishing for a connection with them because this would make you feel better about your loneliness.
To be more precise, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you think this person could make you feel better in some way; it could just be the idea of having something exclusive and intimate with them that was appealing to you.
7) It means that you’re trying to forget about an unpleasant person.
By contrast, another possible meaning could be that you fantasize about someone you know because someone else – perhaps a friend, co-worker, or love interest – is making you feel uncomfortable in some way.
For example, if there’s someone at work who makes your life difficult, this can make it easy for you to focus on other people with whom you might have a better experience.
It could also be the case that someone else in your life is experiencing a problem of some kind and that fantasizing about someone you know is a way for you to cope with – or forget about – that person’s situation.
Moreover, we may also fantasize about an unpleasant person because they remind us of other people in our lives that we’re trying to forget.
8) If you’re in a relationship, it means your sex life could be boring.
Numerous sex experts tell us that creativity in the bedroom and expressing desires are common issues couples have.
Is this also your case? If you feel like your sex life is getting a little boring, you might unwillingly start to fantasize about other people.
If this happens, don’t panic! It is just an indicator that you should spice things up between you are your current partner.
It does NOT mean that you should dump the person you’re with. On the contrary, it is advisable for you to consider your fantasies as a sign to become more daring in your intimate life with him/her.
9) It means you can’t let go of them.
You may feel that you can’t let go of the person you fantasize about, and you could be right!
This could happen because you can’t get them out of your thoughts, or it could be that you think about them often and find yourself wanting to spend more time with them.
Earlier, I mentioned how helpful the advisors at Psychic Source were when I was facing difficulties in life.
Although there’s much we can learn about a situation like this from articles or expert opinions, nothing can truly compare to receiving a personalized reading from a highly intuitive person.
From giving you clarity on the situation to supporting you as you make life-changing decisions, these advisors will empower you to make decisions with confidence.
Click here to get your personalized reading.
Is it normal to fantasize about someone you just met?
What do experts say?
The experts’ opinions on fantasizing about someone you just met fall into two categories: those that say it’s a normal part of human nature and those that say it’s something a little more embarrassing.
It is clear that this type of fantasy is normal – in fact, there is an entire genre of books and films dealing with these types of scenarios.
Some people are probably always going to fantasize about the other people around them, and the majority of them will do so without really thinking about it.
The embarrassing part comes when people start to fantasize about someone they just met and then find that this fantasy is causing them to start living in a dream world.
For example: spending all day thinking about the person you just met when you could be doing something more productive or fun.
Or perhaps you’re fantasizing about someone who is actually involved with someone else and this situation makes you think about their partner as well.
Fantasizing in these ways can make us feel kind of creepy, but even so, it appears to be normal!
Why am I fantasizing about my crush?
There are a few reasons why you might find yourself fantasizing about your crush. Ready?
They are attractive and you want to know more.
The first reason why people fantasize about someone they like is that they want to get to know them better; much better.
You are curious what being with them intimately could be like.
Another reason why you fantasize about your crush is that you’re curious about how things could go down.
If you haven’t experienced intimacy with your crush yet, it’s normal to imagine what it could be like.
They always keep you on edge.
Is your crush a tease? Is he/she always keeping you on the edge?
If they are, then it’s normal for you to fantasize about them and finally blow off some steam (just mentally for now).
I keep fantasizing about this person. Now what?
We’ve covered the meanings of fantasizing about someone you know but if you want to get a completely personalized explanation of this situation and where it’ll lead you in the future, I recommend speaking to the folks over at Psychic Source.
I mentioned them earlier on; I was blown away by how professional yet reassuring they were.
Not only can they give you more direction on your relationship with the person you fantasize about, but they can advise you on what’s in store for your future.
Whether you prefer to have your reading over a call or chat, these advisors are the real deal.
Click here to get your own love reading.
How to stop fantasizing about sex with another partner?
And here you are lying like this (or like this) in bed, next to you quite a living and breathing partner or partner, and things are already moving towards that very thing ... And for some reason you have in your head solid conditional Pamela Anderson. Or Georgie Clooney. Or a sexy boss from work. Or something else that has nothing to do with your partner at all. Why is this happening and what to do about it? Read below.
- 1 Psychology of fantasies
- 2 Problems from having sex fantasies about another person
- 3 What to do about it
Psychology of fantasies
Listen, be honest.
When you enter into a relationship, even if you are absolutely monogamous at the same time and consider adultery a serious crime against the trust of your loved one (and usually people who are just very faithful and monogamous are soaring about sexual fantasies about someone else, yes) - this is not it means that your eyes and the part of the brain responsible for the perception of someone else's sexuality have drastically dried up.
That is, even being in a relationship with a sincerely loved and desired person, you may well notice, even unconsciously, that the conditional boss at your job smokes sexually with sleeves rolled up to the elbow and careless charming stubble on his face.
Or that that actor from the new series is just adorable, and his buttocks are such that the girls are left with nothing to envy. Or... Hell, even images from children's cartoons can be sexy! Remember at least Scar from The Lion King, and say that he is not sexy.
Add to this another factor: human culture is now saturated with sex, just from top to bottom. Anyone and anything can be sexy, including images from those same children's cartoons, not to mention the movies, there are also full of sexual images.
Of course, your brain perceives this, fixes it, and you can feel sexual attraction to someone, especially since there are a great many stimuli capable of provoking this attraction. And this is absolutely normal and may say absolutely nothing about you or your relationship with a partner - you just have eyes and brains, that's all.
Second factor: Sexual fantasies may in principle not be related to sex. Yes, oddly enough, it is.
Sex may be connected in your head, for example, with pleasure, and you may lack endorphins.
Or the person you consider sexy and fantasize about is associated with power and strength, and you just lack such qualities in yourself or in your partner.
Or, for example, you're fantasizing about the hero or heroine of an adventure movie, and how you passionately make love, having just escaped from a gang of bandits - it is likely that you do not need this particular hero, but just a little shake-up.
That is, sexual fantasies may not mean that you passionately lust for this particular man or woman, but that you simply lack something in principle, and this is not related to sex at all.
Well, the third factor, more banal: sometimes the presence of sexual fantasies indicates some problems in a couple. For example, from the banal: the difference in temperaments, when you need more than your partner, there is not enough sex in real life, and your brain gets the sexual energy it lacks from other sources - from your brain.
But this is not necessary at all, as already mentioned, very often sexual fantasies are just your brain's interpretation of sexual stimuli from the environment and nothing more.
Problems from having sex fantasies about another person
In fact, there is nothing wrong with fantasies themselves. No, seriously, nothing at all. These are just thoughts, not actions. People generally think about a lot of things, but thoughts are not something for which people can be judged.
No one will judge you for thinking “damn, how did he get it, he would have killed (a) to hell with it!” about the bosses who bothered you, right? Therefore, there is nothing wrong with sexual fantasies directly, you can relax and enjoy.
However, the problems may be indirect. For example:
- Your experiences.
You think that since you fantasize about another person, it means that you subconsciously want to cheat on your current partner. And because of this, you can start looking for problems in your relationship (after all, if you want to change, then something is wrong in the relationship, right?). And you will find it! And you wind yourself up, and in the end this can lead to a quarrel, and in especially neglected cases, even to parting.
Or it can negatively affect your communication, including sexual communication, because you feel guilty and embarrassed in front of your partner, because of this you behave in a constraint, and he or she does not understand what happened, and naturally worry.
- Jealousy of a partner if he finds out about it.
Not everyone is ready to accept the fact that having a relationship does not mean that a person's brain has abruptly stopped processing incoming information about someone else's sexuality, and a partner may regard the presence of fantasies about another person as a betrayal, which can lead to a quarrel. Well, you know, a lot of people are uncomfortable when their partner watches porn, for example.
- Feelings about your sexuality.
Meaning: Sometimes sexual fantasies can be weird. People can be aroused by things that in their normal, non-aroused state would not seem attractive to them—for example, a straight woman masturbating to lesbian porn (or a man to gay porn), or being aroused by rape or threesome fantasies.
This might come as a shock: I mean, does this turn me on?! Am I one of these? And this, in turn, can negatively affect your sex life while you reflect and worry.
However, sexual fantasies can be turned to your advantage, and here's how:
What to do about it
- Accept, don't suppress.
As already mentioned, sexual fantasies are normal. Therefore, you can just relax and have fun, masturbate if you want, enjoy pleasant erotic dreams.
If sexual fantasies still cause discomfort, then try to analyze: why do you fantasize about this? Why exactly this person, this particular plot of erotic fantasy? What exactly in this person attracts you, what is there in him that your real partner lacks?
It can be anything: for example, you fantasize about hard and rough sex, while your partner is more gentle and soft, and you lack roughness from him. Or you fantasize, on the contrary, about very sensual, soft and romantic sex - perhaps you lack tenderness and attention from your partner, and your sex life has become boring, insipid, without love and affection for each other.
These are the most straightforward examples, just to make it clear, in fact, things can be much more subtle. In short, the essence: think about what exactly excites you in your fantasy and why, and what of this you lack in life, and how you can make up for it.
- Tell your partner about your fantasy.
It's probably best to say "I'm fantasizing about another person" indirectly. Tell the plot of the fantasy: imagine, I once imagined that you and I were two super spies, hiding from the bandits, and you caress me with your tongue on a luxurious piano ... Perhaps your erotic fantasy will be realized, and this will benefit and pleasure without prejudice for your relationship.
It is also possible to talk about fantasies about another person, it excites many men and women, but first it is better to carefully make inquiries about how your partner feels about this. Perhaps both of you will discover a new sexual fetish and sexual practice.
- Redirect this sexual energy to your partner.
You could say that it's not exactly beautiful, of course: making love to one person while thinking about someone else. But on the other hand, in this way you will fix in your brain the connection between sexual pleasure and this particular person, your partner, and not your fantasy, and they will disappear by themselves, giving way to a vivid and sensual reality.
Paradise for adult infantiles: why we are captured by the epidemic of self-development
In recent years, we have seen a boom in taking care of ourselves and our psyche. How, in an effort to become the best version of ourselves, we replaced the counting of workouts and calories with “wish marathons”, when self-development is really useful, and when you need to stop, says practicing psychologist Ekaterina Davydova
According to the Profi specialist search service, in 2021 the demand for psychotherapists increased by 66% (and according to Avito, by all 99%). The topic of self-help is becoming more and more relevant, as evidenced by the worldwide statistics of Google queries. The self-help app market was growing even before the coronavirus pandemic, the statistics of the last year reflect the continuation of the process.
The topic of mental health is also popular in the information space. Recall the scandalous 2019 Gucci show, which began with a catwalk in straitjackets, and ended with a protest performance by one of the models walking the runway, demonstrating the inscription “Mental health is not fashion” written on the palms of her hands, opposing the romanticization of this topic. Ksenia Sobchak's interview with Elena Blinovskaya, the author of the most massive information product in Russia related to self-development, caused a great resonance (the video is one of the three most popular on the channel and has already gained more than 10 million views). Services for the selection of psychologists and coaches are becoming more and more in demand, and the culture of networking is moving from a “only about business” format to communication focused around self-development, shared values and discussions that can enrich oneself personally. For example, the U Skillz project is built on this, the motto of which is “we create useful communities where people learn about people, upgrade their soft skills and just find a cool company for themselves.”
Self-development can be procrastination: a person does not enter into a relationship because he needs to “work” himself a little more
In many ways, what is happening in the field of self-development today is similar to the evolution of the fitness and healthy eating industry. People's passion for a "healthy body" can be conditionally divided into four levels:
- The objective need to work on oneself with the help of physical education and nutrition. For example, if you are overweight, which carries the risk of concomitant diseases.
- Healthy lifestyle as a useful leisure, when a person maintains his own health rather than something radically improves.
- Exercise addiction and orthorexia (a syndrome characterized by an obsessive desire for "proper nutrition"), when the idea of \u200b\u200bthe health and beauty of the physical body becomes obsessive.
- Actions related to the fantasy of a "magic pill" to help you lose weight and become healthier. For example, taking dietary supplements with unproven effectiveness.
Excessive passion for healthy lifestyles gradually gave way to moderation, fitness bloggers made coming-outs on the topic of sports addiction and eating disorders, the fantasy of a magical way to lose weight was transformed into literacy. Similar processes are now taking place in the field of self-development and care for the psyche. Here we can also note four levels of supply and demand:
- Objectively necessary work with mental health. For example, classical psychotherapy in the presence of a traumatic experience or debilitating stress factors.
- Mental health care, personality upgrade as part of lifestyle. For example, psychohygiene and supportive psychotherapy, meditation, soft skills training (soft skills), lectures on psychology and retreats.
- Dependence on self-improvement, self-development as procrastination and a form of escapism. For example, when a person does not enter into a relationship, because he needs to “work out” himself a little more. Or superficially and aimlessly consumes a huge amount of psychological content, justifying itself with the fact that it is useful.
- Dreams of quickly changing yourself and your life in ways that have no proven effectiveness. For example, miracle marathons and “healing” trainings.
Why self-development has become so popular
The trend towards self-development is connected with the standard of living. The well-known Maslow's pyramid demonstrates that when a person's basic needs (food, sleep, safety) are satisfied, aspirations of a different order (the need for belonging, the desire for a certain status in society, personal self-improvement and development) become more important. That is, the better we live, the more valuable the quality of interpersonal relationships, the achievement of new heights, spiritual development, knowledge of the external and internal world become for us.
The more infantile a person is, the more stress and anxiety in his life, the stronger will be his faith in the power of thought
Secondly, there is the concept of magical thinking. It is traditionally present in children and should evolve into a more realistic view as they grow older. The child believes that he can influence the world with the help of thoughts or simple actions: “if I really want to, then my parents will not divorce”, “Santa Claus gave a gift, since I wrote him a letter.” The more infantile a person is, the more stress, anxiety and situations of uncertainty in his life, the stronger will be faith in the power of thought, which is confirmed by research. In addition, a high level of magical thinking is often associated with mental disorders ranging from obsessive-compulsive disorder to schizophrenia.
According to VTsIOM, a third of people in Russia believe in spoilage and the evil eye, 42% of women over 45 believe in witchcraft. Elements of magical thinking are found in all of us. Sit on the track, spit over your left shoulder, wish yourself good luck, visualize desire - all this can be a working way to relieve anxiety, auto-training and expand the boundaries of the possible. An adult normally understands that with positive thoughts and targeted ritual actions we can positively influence our state, and a series of progressive actions leads us to a result - but at the same time, the world does not obey us, although it certainly has elements of luck and a fluke .
The positive effect of magical thinking is associated with a tendency to suggestibility. A placebo effect is triggered in a person, which, for example, is used for pain relief (it has been proven that the application of a pacifier ointment will cause a decrease in pain in many). A similar thing happens at popular trainings, when a leader from the position of a guru can really inspire a person with new attitudes. In the future, they can affect his actions, in the end - on reality. A side effect of such a suggestion is that the merit begins to “belong” to the guru, which means that a person will return to him again and again, linking victories not with his actions, but with the person on stage.
It turns out that the offer on the market today satisfies all needs:
- Classical psychotherapy and evidence-based self-help techniques are used to solve real-life mental health problems.
- Personal skills development courses, a variety of spiritual practices and retreats help improve the quality of life and enrich the inner world of those whose basic needs are already closed.
- Trainings and marathons that guarantee quick results due to the power of thought feed the fantasies of people whose level of magical thinking is high enough. And often they really help due to the placebo effect described above. Or due to the fact that, while running a marathon, a person at least begins to structure his feelings, thoughts, desires, which means that he acquires basic reflection skills.
The situation is complicated by the fact that psychological assistance is not licensed in Russia, which means that people who do not have the appropriate education and, most importantly, who do not follow ethical principles, can provide services, which makes such assistance simply unsafe.
When psychological help and self-development are useful
Psychological counseling and psychotherapy are still relevant and solve a number of problems, from working with conditions to deeper issues. For example, with the help of psychotherapy, one can break the chain of intergenerational trauma by taking a person out of life in survival mode, as well as working with intra-family attitudes like “life is when it’s hard”, “we didn’t have happy marriages in our family”. Research confirms that psychology can influence epigenetics and molecular processes, which means that the psychological problems of previous generations can be inherited, including biologically.
A variety of trainings related to the development of personal skills (from self-confidence and self-presentation to the ability to manage your time and prioritize things) can be very effective. The more skills we have, the more adaptable we are. Also, self-development can be a great option for useful leisure and networking. Today, spiritual retreats, psychological camps and lectures on the psychology of art have been added to traveling and meeting friends.
Literature on popular psychology can also be useful - the works of scientists that allow you to learn more about how the world works and people around, but at the same time do not offer "universal recipes for happiness."
When self-development turns into "self-development"
As in the past in the fitness and healthy nutrition industry, in the field of self-development today we see a number of extremes. First, it often becomes a form of "legal" procrastination and escapism. It is easier for us to justify ourselves if we watched lectures by psychologists on YouTube for two hours, and not a series. It is easier for us to read books with tips on getting rich quick and better relationships than to enter into relationships with a reality where action is required of us. So self-help and self-development become an illusion of activity: it seems to us that we are spending time with benefit, but nothing changes in our life.
Instead of solving real problems, a person goes into spiritual and esoteric practices and urgent tasks of life, goes into spiritual and esoteric practices. It seems to him that he is working on himself, but in fact, in this way, the psyche is trying to cope with stress. Research confirms that spiritual bypassing can increase magical thinking and superstition, increase inactivity due to the fact that a person will expect help from higher powers. Other symptoms of retreat into a spiritual practice are alienation, neglect of maintaining relationships, blind faith in charismatic leaders, and denial of personal responsibility.
Thirdly, the “underdeveloped person syndrome” and dependence on self-development are found everywhere. According to some reports, up to 94% of young people today make a regular commitment to personal development, and self-improvement literature fatigue is becoming a new trend. Bringing oneself to psychological perfection often becomes obsessive. Similar claims can be made to the environment. If earlier a person could calmly gossip, calmly express his opinion in a circle of friends, and emotionally argue, today in a circle of “developed” people he can be called “low-vibration”, unempathic and toxic. And then a simple human conversation turns into a communication full of intellectualization.
"Self-development" can also be a legal way to prolong one's own infantilism. Then a person shifts responsibility for his choices and actions to instructions from marathons and miraculous techniques from trainings (which can then be blamed), and instead of real actions, choose fantasies in the hope of their fulfillment.
How to develop yourself correctly
First of all, it is important to determine the goals of self-development, as well as the criteria for mental health. And if the goals may differ depending on the stage of life (today we may need to develop public speaking skills, and in a year - the nuances of infant psychology), then the criteria for health are known. For example, according to the WHO, “mental health is a state of well-being in which a person realizes their abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, work productively and fruitfully, and contribute to their community.”
It is in this definition that the line between the sufficiency and redundancy of self-development and self-care is drawn.