Fantasies. We all have them. At some point in our lives everyone engages in fantasy. I am going to be bold and even say that at some point on a daily basis most people have thoughts that would classify as fantasy. Even if for the briefest of moments. We fantasize about all sorts of things…from the benign and harmless to the crazy and potentially dangerous. We have dark fantasies, light fantasies, unrealistic ones, and ones that could very easily become reality.
The subject of fantasy has been surfacing in discussions all around me recently. Usually when this happens, when a subject presents itself to me over and over again in various forums, I will often feel compelled to write about it. The persistence of said topic is almost like a omen…and it is begging for further discussion.
So let’s talk about fantasy. First, look at the definition. It is way more in depth than even I suspected. Dictionary.com defines fantasy in these terms:
1. imagination, especially when extravagant and unrestrained.
2. the forming of mental images, especially wondrous or strange fancies; imaginative conceptualizing.
3. a mental image, especially when unreal or fantastic; vision:
a nightmare fantasy.
4. Psychology. an imagined or conjured up sequence fulfilling a psychological need; daydream.
5. a hallucination.
6. a supposition based on no solid foundation; visionary idea; illusion:
dreams of Utopias and similar fantasies.
7. caprice; whim.
*I seriously could write a thesis analyzing this definition, but I will keep it short.
Okay. But what is fantasy really? And is there a reality to it? In my opinion, engaging in fantasy is merely your thoughts taking you to places where you may be afraid to dwell. Fantasy is the ability to imagine things outside of your grasp. To do things you would not otherwise do. To be someone you are not. To be someone you wish you could be. To escape from a reality that perhaps is not meeting your current needs. Or perhaps to just escape a reality that is overwhelming. What ever the reasons for our fantasies, they are quite real. And there is absolutely no shame in sometimes escaping our reality to feel a little more free in a fantasy world. That is one reality of fantasy.
But for some reason, the whole idea of fantasy tends to carry a negative connotation along with it. But why? Why are our fantasies so forbidden? Are they not just our thoughts? And are not thoughts-unique, individual, personal thoughts-merely part of the human experience? Fantasy is healthy. Fantasy can help us to think outside of the box. It can help us understand things about ourselves that may not be completely apparent. Fantasy can drive us forward. But it can also hold us back. It can lead us to great things and wonderful experiences. It allows us to dream big. But it can also lead us to places which may be better left within the confines of our fantasy worlds.
Another reality of fantasy is this…we all visit fantasy worlds from time to time. And that is healthy, it is human, it is real. But what actions or inactions we take in response to each fantasy is where the trouble may lie. Depending on the nature of the fantasy, taking action to make it a reality could lead to beautiful, amazing, wondrous experiences. Taking action could also lead to worlds of trouble that may be better left in fantasyland. On the flip side, inaction may be good or bad as well. Sitting stagnant, afraid to take the steps to realize a big dream, is not such a beneficial response. But inaction in response to a fantasy that may not have such pleasant outcomes is probably the better option.
Fantasies in and of themselves have no outcomes really, they are nearly nothing at all, just thoughts in our heads…until we take action. So when deciding which action is best in response to a fantasy, we must be prepared for the consequences: good, bad, or indifferent. There may be no consequences to fantasy. In fact, there shouldn’t ever be consequences to just thinking about something. But there are always consequences to actions. And these consequences can never be predicted. All we can do is prepare for the unexpected.
Now let’s look at the fantasy and the reality of this Victoria Beckham dress. The fantasy is this: I wish I looked as stellar as Victoria Beckham would look in a dress like this. The reality: I don’t. I look like me. And that reality is pretty okay. But the fantasy is nice, too.
And my husband apparently has had quite the fantasy involving me (not Victoria Beckham) in this dress! Now that’s a fantasy I am willing to explore a little bit further…perhaps even take action! (Sorry, husband, if I have revealed to much. It’s what I do…and you love me for it!)
Dress: Women’s Plus Black and White Mod Shift Tulip Appliqué Dress – Victoria Beckham for Target (Currently on sale for $28.00).
Long Sleeve Tee: Old Navy (No Longer available).
Earrings: Burlington Coat Factory (No direct link available).
Where have your fantasies taken you lately? Have they led you to great places?
Fantasizing on the edge,
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