I read this wonderful article on Writing Your Way to Happiness in The New York Times blog and I couldn’t stop thinking about it. Here is a little background before you read the article.
I always believe in Abstract thoughts and Concrete words.
We have so many thoughts running in our minds that often, we find it difficult to focus on a specific task or to find a solution after some analysis.
Assume that you have 10 tabs of a browser opened. In one of those tabs you try to download a video, and in another tab you try to call someone through Skype. The other tabs are doing some trivial work. You realize that things are awfully slow and that you need some dedicated bandwidth for the most important issue at hand. You prioritize and close other tabs that might not necessarily be required at that point. You always have the option of coming back to it later. And voila, your work goes on smooth.
Do you think the human mind can operate in a similar way? Not at all!
We have so many thoughts (tabs) going on and the more we try to forget something to focus on something else, the more conspicuous it becomes. If I ask you to think of an elephant for a minute and then tell you not to think of the elephant, guess what you would be thinking of? 😉 (Yeah, I borrowed this from Inception).
When our mind is free, we can think a lot. That’s great. But most of the time when we have many things to attend to and when we still need to think about something important, we do not have the option of shutting down other thoughts. (How we wish there was such an option!). That’s when the ‘Concrete Words’ comes into picture.
When you give your thoughts a certain shape, it becomes easy for you to make more sense of it. When you speak about it or write about it (a much better option), you can clearly see what’s in front of you and focus on that.
This article (Writing Your Way to Happiness), justifies how writing can benefit you, at a more personal level. Read on.