Le Penseur

A few days ago a friend said to me, “You’re a thinker.”

Well, of course I had to go think about that for a while.

Hmmm, I concluded, yes, I guess I really am a thinker. Then I thought some more: Gee, I wonder it that’s a good thing or a bad thing. After thinking that over for quite some time, I thought: Well, I guess it depends on what I’m thinking, right?

Looking back to my high school days, I remembered that I was always thinking — and talking — about myself. When I was talking with a friend, I could hardly for them to finish their silly chit-chat so I could talk about myself. I didn’t care about gossip or hearing about their boyfriend’s habits. No, I wanted to get serious. I wanted to talk about the way I thought and felt about things, about how I’d figured out certain things and wondered about other things, and . . . and . . . and . . .

I was a real analysis freak. I used to go for walks in the woods and just think and think and think. I even had a “thinking rock” near our house where I used to sit for hours on end just trying to understand what was what and why.

And this tendency didn’t end with high school either. I just kept right on with the self-analysis, often writing long, involved diaries that I would always end up throwing away.

But then I reached a point in my life where I started to wonder what good all this thinking, all this analyzing and dissecting was really doing. I thought: but I have to think. It’s not possible not to think, no matter what the meditation gurus say. There’s always something going on in my mind.

So I decided to do some thought sorting. I figured at least I had a choice about what to think and what not to think. I knew there was a difference between productive thinking and ruminating, obsessing, or just plain chewing my cud. I also knew that I’d probably be a lot better off thinking of things that were creative or at least positive in some way, instead of rehashing how Aunt Tilly (or whoever) had bruised my delicate little psyche when I was a kid (or whatever).

After I started making smarter choices about how to spend my thought-time, I really started feeling much happier and freer.

OK, so I think I’ve got it now. We are what we think. That’s right: contrary to popular belief, we’re not what we eat, we’re what we think.

What do YOU think?

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6 Comments

Filed under individuality, my history, spiritual

6 responses to “Le Penseur

  1. Amy, I love this. Well said and you know I do understand. I agree that if you can’t stop the thinking, at least think on the things that are lovely, fruitful, and healing. If we are what we think, then don’t we want to think something lovable? Well, I’ll think about it! 😉

  2. Muriel Vasconcellos

    Our thoughts create our reality. We have the option to choose what we want to think about–and what we want to think.

  3. Gordon Myers

    I can so relate to you on this one. Once (after going through a breakup actually) a friend told me not to get stuck in “analysis paralysis.” That term really jumped out at me, since it’s such a succinct yet descriptive way to put it! But sometimes I just have to force myself to switch that off and keep busy.

  4. I think this is one of the biggest challenges for all of us, Gordon.

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