I titled this post “How to Stop Thinking and Start Living” not because I had the answer, but because I was hoping you would.
See, I think too much. I live in my head – typical introvert, I think! 🙂
It’s so bad, I even coined a phrase – while on VACATION, for goodness sakes! – “double-think,” as in, “I need to double-think on that one a bit.”
Often, thinking “too much” is actually to my benefit. It keeps me from making big goofs, makes me feel prepared, gives me a sense of control, of being thorough.
The downside: it keeps me from making big goofs. We learn from mistakes, don’t we? I have a friend who talks about “accelerating your rate of failure.” How can I fail, and fail fast, if I’m thinking too much? The faster I fail, the faster I’ll succeed.
And all of that feeling prepared, in control stuff? It’s really, well, all in my head. It’s a false sense of comfort. In reality, I can only think enough to be a reasonable, responsible, thoughtful person. Then other people are going to do what they do, and I can only count on my preparation to keep me grounded, not to have all the answers or to have control over the situation.
What happens when we live too much in our heads? We forget we exist below the neck. Our heart doesn’t speak as clearly. Our gut suffers from being ignored. Our hands remain idle. Our feet get stuck in the mud.
We stop feeling and experiencing life first-hand. Everything goes through the fine-mesh filter of our brains, and pragmatism prevails over passion.
A member of The Introvert Entrepreneur Facebook tribe shared, “Sometimes over-thinking can be a retreat FROM feeling, I find, and sometimes an escape from doing, because you have to own what you do and sometimes that’s scary.”
Another shared, “This morning, I’ve been thinking (ha!) that I spend so much time thinking, I neglect to simply FEEL.”
Well said, friends! As long as a thought is in our heads, we don’t have to take responsibility or feel something. It’s purely an intellectual exercise.
It’s the exposing that thought to the world that’s vulnerable. Scary. Risky. Exhilarating. Necessary!!!
One other tidbit of wisdom a Facebook friend wrote: “Sometimes, done is better than perfect.”
Perhaps that’s part of the answer… we have to let go of perfection and expectation, and embrace curiosity and vulnerability. Learn to laugh at ourselves. Accelerate our rate of failure so that we increase the chances of success.
Love and honor the thinker in you, TRUST YOURSELF, and don’t “double-think” to the point that you get stuck in the mud. You have tremendous gifts to give the world, and they will only come out if they are allowed to move from head to heart to hands.
Here’s to living a life of thoughtful action!!
Please share! Do you spend too much time in your head? What helps you to move from head to heart to hands? Share in the comments – but don’t think about it too much… just type!
Featured image borrowed from http://www.chrisauman.com/the-thinker-by-rodin/