Everyone has their own little ways to calm their mind and find inspiration and I’m no exception to this. I don’t always just sit down and know exactly what I’m going to write about or even have any notion of what I possibly could write. I have a list of ideas for such occasions. But if none of them resonate at the time, I don’t feel the spark of inspiration and cannot muster the necessary motivation to attempt to put my thoughts into words on the topic.
I’ve tried several ways to quiet my thoughts and let my muse speak to me and they work to a degree sometimes. But the one thing I seem to fall back on by default when I’m really stumped is to get in the shower. I will literally just sit down on the floor of the shower letting the water run over me and let my thoughts wander. So far it has yet to fail to give me at least one idea I feel I can definitely sit down and explore further with the required amount of personal interest.
This is what I did tonight, though with a slight variation that I sometimes toss in there when I have lots of random thoughts but none that fit the bill. I have a digital voice recorder that I’ve put in a Ziploc bag so that I can sit there and record myself as I talk through what’s on my mind. I haven’t ever gone back and listened to anything I’ve recorded and highly doubt I ever will, but there seems to be something about actually verbalizing my thoughts that helps me put them in some semblance of order.
You probably wouldn’t think so if you heard the random shit that comes out of my mouth with sudden and intermittent pauses and digressions, but it works for me somehow. This is how I decided upon my general topic for this evening; the pros and cons of talking to oneself. I also managed to come up with three other ideas, two of which I’m going to save for a later date, but if I can get through this one quick enough, I’d like to dive into one of the others while it’s still fresh in my mind.
But to get back to the topic at hand, it’s been said that some of the best conversations are the ones you have with yourself because there is no one to disagree or argue with you. I’m not so sure this is entirely true as I seem to engage in mental debates with myself but that’s beside the point. I think that the lack of having anyone else to offer input of any sort is both the best and worst part about this little verbal practice.
It’s good because while I’m sitting in the shower and talking to myself, there isn’t anyone else to derail the conversation and take it in a different direction than my mind is headed anyway. This is useful when the goal is to gain a better understanding of who you are and why you think and feel as you do. The more uninterrupted and uncorrupted data you’ve got to base your conclusion on the better.
I know that any conclusion I come to is based solely on what I’ve found within myself with no outside influences. It’s coming just from my own knowledge, experience, and creativity. Sometimes it can feel a bit like a dog chasing its own tail when I find myself thinking in circles, but more often than not it’s more of a linear path. Well, not exactly linear, more like a sine wave I suppose except much less predictable. Progress is made in one general direction but general is the key word. I wander off on tangents unexpectedly then somehow make my way back on track.
On the other hand, it certainly has its downside that stems from the same source. When you’re communicating with someone else their perspective can sometimes help you think about something in a different way that makes it feel like it makes more sense. They can offer you their thoughts on why something you think is so, or why it is not, and that gives you more information to base your conclusion on, just of a different sort.
I know this is all incredibly obvious and probably does not need stating but sometimes when I’m sitting there, I really just wish I had someone to answer me. I feel like I want someone to tell me what they think and give me some advice. What I was thinking about while sitting there and talking to myself was what sort of impact actually having that would have on the outcome of my thoughts. Am I better off for having to sort through it all on my own? Would I finish the shower with the same inspired feeling or would I just have even more to consider and less that I felt sure about and ready to write about?
Maybe I’d finish up with the result that what I ended up writing was actually significantly better for having someone there to let me know that it didn’t really sound as good or interesting as it did in my head or when I heard myself say it. For the time being, the question is one of a purely academic nature as having someone to talk about my thoughts with late at night in the shower would likely require finding someone willing to go out on a date with me first. Or feeling the desire to look for someone to take on said date as the case may be.
As I sit here and write this, it seems like a bit of a silly thing to write about, this idea of talking to myself. But then again, that’s basically what my writing has been for the past several months, sitting down and having a conversation with myself except I document it on a keyboard instead of a voice recorder and it gets posted out there online for all the world to see. Just like when I talk to myself, it often comes in short little bursts of furious typing followed by pauses to stare at the wall or ceiling and then back to typing.
The only real difference since I don’t really go back and edit it is that you don’t have to sit and wait through silence during those pauses and it sounds like it’s one non-stop flow of thoughts. It is sometimes, but not often. Though the ending of yesterday’s post made me seriously reconsider my not-editing policy. That just got weird quick out of nowhere. But… before I digress or wander back down that rabbit hole, I’ll call this one done for the night. Thanks for reading!