shoot the moon, and miss completely…

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Having the time to think and taking the time to think are, for me, two different things.

Having the time depends merely (merely, she says) on my schedule, and how busy I am. But taking the time to think means actually stopping, inside my head, my normal patterns. Such as listing the errands left to run today, tomorrow, this week; nattering on at myself about the latest plot hole. It means stopping, and Thinking. Capitalised because sometimes it's work: I have this dreadful habit of sliding away from the issue.

If I'm thinking about something significant, my frontbrain tries almost anything to avoid considering it. I'll start out on the right track, and then all of a sudden I throw myself a distracting thought, must remember to do such and such, or whatever it should happen to be, and then before I know it I'm back to useless burble. Now, maybe the backbrain just wants to work on the issue silently and quietly in the background. And I can respect that, because that's the way I like to work on problems. But I'm also a control freak and, quite frankly, the backbrain is altogether too sly and sneaky for my comfort. 😉

Of course, there's also the other kind of thinking, the meditative kind, where I let my thoughts slide in and out and I don't try to hold on to anything. I very, very rarely take the time to do this anymore. Which is a shame, because it really grounds me. I'm much calmer if I let myself stop mid-walk and stare at a tree or the ocean or a cat in someone's window. Or into nowhere, really. But, you see, I drive more than I walk these days, and stopping mid-drive is impractical, to say the least.

In a stroke of synchronicity, Nadia Cornier is musing about something similar: taking the time to do things properly. I like what she's saying, an awful lot. Note to self: stop rushing. You're no good when you rush. And really — what's the hurry?

4 thoughts on “shoot the moon, and miss completely…

  1. Catching the train every day means I have two hours, guaranteed, of slippy sliding not doing anything thougts.

    I think I think too much.

    I was thinking on what Cornier wrote – I know I do what she was wondering; working out my 'issues' in public, in my blog, 'cept I'm beginning to think it's not the right way to go, because I end up starting to believe what I say, and I'm fairly certian I have it wrong in a great many ways. If that makes sense. I have the impression of bigger stranger things under the surface, which I didn't know where there before, but I can't see them past all the demons I have pinned down.

  2. So a hybrid of you and I would be… a calm and centred person who thought exactly the right amount? I don't believe it!

    As far as what Cornier wrote, I can empathise because I tend not to talk much in public except about stuff I've already figured out, or stuff I'm otherwise sanguine about. (Maybe because I only started blogging shortly before Clarion, and blogging at Clarion was a dicey affair, what with everyone else's privacy to be taken into account.) And there's always going to be a line of 'bloggable/public and definitelyprivate' for me, but I've been asking myself lately if I'm not being a little too reserved.

    Then again, if I talk about a story in any depth before it's finished, I tend not to finish it. Why is that?

    And I can wholly understand your point about pinning down daemons cluttering the view. But is that really any different from having pinned them down in an offline or private journal?

  3. A hybrid of us would take forever to get to sleep, and then never, ever, ever wake up again.

    I never talk about my stories before I finish them, for that reason. Except I know it's because if I try and sum up my story in a couple of sentences, it sounds bloody stupid and embarassing and something to be ashamed of, which it ISN'T, but you know…tempremental writer types.

    Hamish has this annoying habit of sneaking in and looming over my shoulder when I'm writing. He knows I hate that.

    I think the effectiveness of private pinned demons and publically pinned demons (that sounds kinky) goes into the realm of personal preference. For me, I hang them out to dry in public, because if I don't, I bottle everything up, and it builds up and builds up as a secret, pretending everything is okay, until I ASPLODE. So letting everyone else know I'm messed up is one way of sabotaging myself from doing this. Does that make sense?

  4. Ah, yes, *nodnod* that makes sense. I think that's what I use the offline journal for, the venting and releasing, although of course it's not public so I don't feel … labelled by it, I suppose is the best term to describe it. But then, it not being public would mean it's still secret, in a way. It's a fine line, eh?

    Aptly, right this moment, I am listening to Rilo Kiley's "Don't Deconstruct": don't deconstruct, then fill me in / I'm not that basic, I swear

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