"People tend to think of mind wandering as something that is bad. You try to pay attention and you can't," lead author Eric Schumacher said in a statement. "Our data are consistent with the idea that this isn't always true. Some people have more efficient brains."
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The scientists believe high-efficient brains have more capacity to think. Therefore, it may be easier to daydream while performing simple tasks.
“Our findings remind me of the absent-minded professor — someone who’s brilliant, but off in his or her own world, sometimes oblivious to their own surroundings,” said Schumacher. “Or school children who are too intellectually advanced for their classes. While it may take five minutes for their friends to learn something new, they figure it out in a minute, then check out and start daydreaming.”
The researchers hope their findings will lead to studies that decipher when mind wandering is harmful and when it is helpful.