Friday, August 12, 2011

Under the microscope

I came to an odd realization this morning: I think too much.

I don't mean that I think about meaningful things, or even useless things, and I'm not trying to make myself sound smarter than I am. What I am trying to do is come to terms with this 'flaw'.

One thing that I love about some of the blogs I read, sites I visit, and friends I keep, is how in-the-moment they seem. Maybe they're neurotic about it on the inside, but what comes across to me is that they don't overthink everything like I do. To me, it feels like they LIVE. They REACT. They don't try and think too much, eliminate any "what if" situations, or concern themselves so much with the end of something. It feels like they just let themselves be a part of the experience, not concerned with the end.

Somewhere, I forgot how to do that. I forgot how to get wrapped up in the whirlwind of things going on. If someone jokingly proposes an on-the-spot game, I wonder about the technicalities that could cause me to win or lose. If someone tells me "Oh, I saw _____ today", I ask why they told me or what the point of the story is.

It seems like there are only a few situations left that I DON'T overthink everything: when I'm angry, when I'm buried in work, and when I'm being creative (writing or cooking). Even then, if something draws me out of what I'm doing (like my neurotic obsessive-compulsive attitude about time-checking), I go right back to the 'what if' and all the other overthinking.

Any ideas on how to fix this? I can't be cooking or writing constantly, and I'd rather not be angry or buried in work all the time.
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry


Sarah said...

Do strategy games work for you? Chess? I wonder if finding more ways to occupy that part of your brain might work.

Detective stories and movies? Maybe even writing one, or something else along that theme of strategy, puzzles, and process.

Is it possible that you are dealing with anxiety?

Another possibility is that you are overthinking your overthinking. :) Maybe you have a good mind that just isn't fully occupied yet. Might only feel like an uncomfortable flaw because you haven't found your niche yet.

I deal with anxiety myself, if I am ruminating a lot it might mean I'm feeling like I'm in survival mode and that I can't relax safely. So then I find healthy distractions, exercise can help too.

Kelly Hogaboom said...

I have a suggestion. Read the book "You Are Here" by Thich Nhat Hanh. You can get a copy from the library. I bought one for a friend recently... going to buy my own copy soon.

Anonymous said...

I was told this was 'mental gymnastics'...and believe me, no good comes from it.

journal for a while and you will see how far afield your mind takes you, and the worries you borrow that never come to pass....

yep, I do it, too

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