Tag Archives: thinking

not all minds that wander are lost.

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after reading this research i now see why i am happy most of the time-

i am an idle mind-wanderer.

it’s my best sport. 

Research suggests that people with freely moving thoughts are happier.

“Sometimes you just want to let your mind go free,” says Julia Kam, a cognitive neuroscientist who directs the Internal Attention Lab at the University of Calgary. Kam became interested in her subject 15 years ago as an undergraduate struggling with her own distracted thoughts during lectures. “I came into the field wanting to find a cure,” she says. But the deeper she got into research, the more she came to appreciate the freedom of an unfocused mind. “When your thoughts are just jumping from one topic to the next without an overarching theme or goal, that can be very liberating,” she says.

Researchers have found that people spend up to 50 percent of their time mind-wandering. Some internal thinking can be detrimental, especially the churning, ruminative sort often associated with depression and anxiety. Try instead to cultivate what psychologists call freely moving thoughts. Such nimble thinking might start with a yearning to see your grandmother, then careen to that feeling you get when looking down at clouds from an airplane, and then suddenly you’re pondering how deep you’d have to bore into the earth below your feet before you hit magma. Research suggests that people who do more of that type of mind-wandering are happier.

Facilitate unconstrained thinking by engaging in an easy, repetitive activity like walking; avoid it during riskier undertakings like driving. You’ll find it harder to go free-ranging if you’re myopically worried about something in your personal life, like an illness or an argument with a spouse.

For a recent study, Kam hooked subjects up for an electroencephalogram and then had them do a mundane task on a keyboard while periodically asking them about their thoughts. She was able to see, for the first time, a distinct neural marker for freely moving thoughts, which caused an increase in alpha waves in the brain’s frontal cortex. This is the same region where scientists see alpha waves in people doing creative problem-solving. We live in a culture that values work and productivity over almost everything else, but remember, your mind is yours. Make space to think in idle ways unrelated to tasks. “It can replenish you,” Kam says.

 

“i was trying to daydream, but my mind kept wandering.”

-steven wright

 

credits: nytimes/sunday magazine, ‘how to let your mind wander’- malia wollan , university of calgary

hopscotch.

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“i cling to the optimistic belief that the haphazard and the hopscotch,

the creature that sips among many flowers,

may actually come up with something…

”

-b. leithauser

 

hopscotch on sidewalk at postman’s rest park

ann arbor, mi usa

 

not that common.

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are you familiar with the saying “common sense is not that common”?

celebrate this rarely used quality on november 4, common sense day.

the date coincides with the birth date of actor will rogers

who was thought to have coined this phrase.

how to celebrate?
well, what can be said?

use your common sense to celebrate this unofficial holiday.

did you know…

…that thomas paine wrote a pamphlet called common sense in 1776?

in it, he drew out the need for independence of

the 13 british colonies in north america from britain.

the pamphlet is thought to have inspired the american revolution.

i wish that the celebration of common sense

would carry over to november 8th,

our upcoming election day in the united states.

credits: timeanddate.com

dog.

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tell me about your picture.

it’s my dog. 

he has

4 legs

and

a tail

and

some spots

and 

a face.

and where is the rest of him?

right there.

he’s white.

don’t you see him?

yes, i do now.


“in complex trains of thought signs are indispensable.”

-george henry lewes