Thursday, November 19, 2009

“Take time to deliberate; but when the time for action arrives, stop thinking and go in.”
Andrew Jackson quoting Napoleon Bonaparte.

Thinking; do you ever think about thinking? I do, in fact I get tired of thinking sometimes. Idle thinking can be OK for awhile but in general, for me, idle thinking is unproductive, stress producing waste of time. Thinking is what makes us human; sets us apart from other life forms, or so we like to think. (Just because trees don't talk doesn't mean they don't think.)
I remember when I first realized that other people thought thoughts. Say what?! Yes that's right, when I was nine years old a great revelation was revealed to me from the ether: everybody thinks! Jeepers, what a relief that was....the pressure of thinking that I was the only person who had thoughts was weighing heavily on my young mind and I was feeling overwhelmed, burdened in fact. I never mentioned this to anyone else before now; just in case the ether voice was wrong.
Now, all these many days hence, I'm fairly convinced that, in fact, other people think too. Just to be clear: I was 9 years 6 1/2 months old, standing in the living room of our matchbook house's living room staring at the clothes hanging in the doorway to my bedroom and above the huge grate that allowed the heat from the coal furnace below to heat the house. I'm not saying that the furnace was running, I'm just saying that I was looking in that direction.

The cure for thinking, yes cure; over thinking is an illness, I think, is to do something. Yup, get off my butt and undertake a physical activity. Preferably start with some mindless task: sweep the floor, wash the dishes, shovel the drive way; oops, nope belay the shoveling chore; it leads to too much thinking. Thinking while doing mindless tasks is better than just sitting around thinking but still not as releasing as short bursts of physicality. Like the difference between smoking 1/2 pack of cigarettes a day and smoking 2 PPD.

So, rel, what's the point of this essay? There is no point per se.....just putting random thoughts on the page. Typing is sort of a burst of physical activity isn't it? ;)
Thinking is a mood altering activity: nobody likes me. They don't understand me. I'm doing a terrible job. I'm a failure. Then that leads to; I can't sleep. I'll be too tired in the morning to do my job. Everybody will think I'm a slacker. I'm a worthless piece of debris. Gee, I was in a good mood 'til I started thinking. Stop; STOP! Quit thinking and get moving. Talk to someone: Hi good morning Jill. You're looking bright and chipper this morning. And that dress looks really good on you. Oh hi Tom. I forgot to tell you yesterday that you did a great job with that case with Dr. cut-m-up. It was a tough case from the get go and you made it look easy; nice job. Morning Ralph, here let me get that coffee for you; you're always picking up the tab for me, it's my turn today.

When you find yourself too much into idle thinking, step out of yourself and experience life. I'm not saying it's easy, but I'll try, will you.

Thanks for listening; I'll sleep better now.



Blogger Jellyhead said...

Rel I know exactly what you mean - sometimes I think myself stupid. If that makes sense.

It's that mulling, worrying thinking that gets us nowhere fast. I love to exercise because I get out and active and my brain stops whirring so much.

Your post has reminded me of the importance of clearing those recurring internal thoughts and looking outwards. So thank you!

12:51 AM  
Blogger Puss-in-Boots said...

I work from home transcribing medical reports for specialists over all specialties and believe it or not, I do my thinking then. The words are dictated into my ear, bypass my brain and come out the fingers, leaving me to think. I've thought of chapters for my book during that time. Does this make me multiskilled???

5:26 AM  
Blogger willow said...

Invariably, I do my best thinking in the shower or in the middle of the night, when my brain is most relaxed.

7:45 AM  
Blogger KoffeeBean said...

Ever since I read this I have been humming that old tune "Reuben, Reuben I've been thinkin'".................!! :)

10:41 AM  

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