The Fine Art of Overthinking
I saw this today online and I couldn’t help but write a post about it. Do you do this? Oh no! Me neither. Wink.
When my husband and I first started dating whenever I would start spinning out in my mind I would tell him about it. He had this amazing ability to nip it in the bud asap. In about one quick sentence he would sum up what I had spent (and was going to continue without his help) many hours trying to work through in my mind. His sentences often started with either, “Why don’t you (insert perfectly clear solution)?” Or, my favorite, a quizzical, “Why are you even thinking about that?”
I mentioned this to him not too long ago—like a “Remember when you used to nip all that bullshit mind chatter of mine in the bud with like two words or a sentence tops?” He did remember. Then I thought out loud to him, “Why doesn’t that work so well anymore?” And I realized it was because the thing that I have the most mind chatter about these days involves him too—our children. And he’s totally in the thick of it with me. He has no outsider clarity that sees the simple solution.
These days when I’m trying to figure out how to coordinate naps, or get two diverging needs of my children both met, my husband rarely says, “Why are you even thinking about that?” Which in all honesty, would probably still be relevant. Because it always works out somehow and despite whatever planning you’ve done it’s usually not the way you intended. Instead, he’s trying to figure out the puzzle with me. It’s the dance of creating equations that involve our children which are still largely irrelevant and circular: “If this (she sleeps now), than that (she might not sleep later and might actually prevent his nap from happening), but not every time… and so maybe we should….”
So I had to chuckle when I saw this image this morning—at myself, and the glorious and often overused instrument of the mind. Thank you for being at my disposal mind. But now please stop running in circles.