Thoughts on Thinking

I want to think less. I really mean this: I want to ruminate less, perseverate less, analyze less, worry less. And I want to DO more. Sometimes, I believe that by THINKING REALLY HARDI’m being productive. But this is simply not true. I’m just thinking. And, as I’ve gradually come to realize, thoughts are very different from actions.

Today, as I sat down to write, my first impulse was to spend some time planning ahead. This included: checking my calendar to see whether I was on track with my writing (I was not); adding new deadlines to my calendar; making a to-do list of all the things I needed to do in order to get myself back on track with my writing; and basically doing everything I possible could do to think about writing without actually writing.

Thinking is a total trap, (or at least I know it is for me). That’s right. IT’S A TRAP!! Because it feels like I’m doing something. But thinking a novel is different from writing a novel, it turns out. Who would have thought?*

So now that I know it’s a trap for me, what do I do? Here’s the worst/best part: it doesn’t really matter. What is most important when I find myself stuck in overanalyzing and ruminating is to just plunge in and begin SOMETHING, go SOMEWHERE. I don’t recommend this as a course of action all the time, but if ruminating is an issue for you, give it a whirl. I have found it helpful to simply begin.

So, without further ado: here I go.

 

*Yes. That was a pun.

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