A weird thing happened this week.
Monday 6 February, 9:15am. I was on the way to yoga, and the dude on the podcast said, “each day, 80% of our thoughts are on repeat.”
This was my first thought, which let’s face it, is something I think regularly. Where did he get that statistic? People love to spout statistics.
I suppose if you consider thoughts like… What’s for dinner? Where are my keys? How did the cat in there…?
Monday 6 February, 9:35 am. I was on the mat in my yoga class. The teacher was doing that thing yoga teachers do, talking non-stop about their fascinating spiritual ruminations, and she made the exact same comment.
“Each day, 80% of our thoughts are on repeat.”
Word for word… Even if she happened to be listening to the same podcast as me, it’s still a weird coincidence. Neither cited their sources but both sounded very confident.
Wednesday 8 February, 1:30. I as listening to Jennifer Cohen on the Cathy Heller podcast and she said, “80% of your thoughts each day are negative.” She also was very confident and didn’t cite any peer reviewed research.
Is this true? Are 80% of our thoughts white noise? Negative whiney white noise?
If this is true then the goal for all humankind should be to reduce the inter-cranial recycling. What a waste of brain power.
I don’t have the time to conduct surveys but I can make a list of what do we waste time thinking about in this household and try to come up with ways of cutting out the waste.
Being a bit more organised is probably step one. This is a message for my darling husband. You don’t have to wonder where your keys are if you always put them on the hall table. I’m just going to leave that there…
He might not know where his keys are, like ever, but he does have his wardrobe choices nailed. You don’t have to think about what you’re going to wear if you have a uniform of sorts. He literally wears a uniform for work and while he has a lot of clothes, he has a limited wardrobe style-wise. Like Steve Jobs but with polo shirts instead of turtle-necks.
My husband certainly doesn’t suffer from overthinking. He’s a very peaceful dude. I’d be very surprised if ten percent of his daily thoughts were negative and those would only be complaints about the piss-poor coverage of squash on the PSA website.
As for me, I couldn’t give a stuff about the squash but I have been quite the ruminator in the past. I’ve found amazing relief from the mind swirl with daily journaling will sort this out in the form of Morning Pages. I won’t ramble about Morning Pages because I’ve done it so much, I might just push a regular reader over the edge.
In my journaling practice, I’ve found I can encourage unique thoughts using prompts. (You only need to Google Journaling Prompts to have more stimulus than you can use in a lifetime. Oh and no dot points. This isn’t a to-do list, it’s a brain dump of all your darkest thoughts. The aim is to drain off that much-talked about 80% and get to the good stuff!)
Usually I just follow my curiosity or just describe what’s happening around me. I don’t know how it works, it just does.
Curiosity is a great guide in journaling and life in general and a typical state of being for most writers. For example, on the way to yoga last Monday, just before podcast dude made his bold claim, I had a very surprising and unique thought. I saw a poor little dead rat on the road and I wondered, what is the purpose of rigor mortis?
I haven’t Googled rigour mortis yet. I wanted to ponder it for a while to see if I recycled it over the coming days and I can report that I didn’t think about it again, until I sat down to edit this post. Maybe tomorrow.
You made me Google ‘why does rigor mortis occur’ 🤣
so glad to be of service 😉
Lol 😂. I have to make more time to read your posts C, they are good fodder for the soul🙏🏼.
Sent from my iPhone
aaah thank you my lovely friend.
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