When and where do you do your best thinking? This is such a difficult question to answer. The better question for me is probably: when and where do you completely shut your mind off? (or at least try to)
- Definitely during episodes of Revenge.
- Whenever I kiss someone (unless it’s not going well).
- And I probably make a good effort whenever I get a massage.
That’s all I got. So, I guess it’s safe to say that if I’m not cheering on Emily Thorne, locking lips, or being covered in hot stones, then I’m really thinking. In reality, I’m always thinking about something: family, career, love life, the past (to a minimum), the future, friends, money, news reports, twitter updates…
But my BEST thinking? In order to best answer this, I took a look back at what I consider some of my best posts and tried to pin-point where I was and or what was going on in my life when the idea for the article came to me. What I found didn’t surprise me: there isn’t just one answer.
1. In my car: WIthout a doubt, hours and hours of thoughts have gone on in my trusty Corolla. Even before I started this blog, it was my main haven for thinking. With a three-hour overall commute everyday, I didn’t really have a choice. Throw in the radio and the emotions different songs can evoke and you’ve got some powerful pondering. Here’s a few posts that were inspired by “in the car” thoughts:
- Oh, the places your mind takes you! (written after hearing a song on the radio while driving to dinner)
- The FInal Twelve: Day 5 “For My Colleagues” (written after thinking on my way home about what was discussed at a faculty meeting)
2. While reading a book or watching a movie: It’s only natural that when we read or view scenarios in a book or on the big screen, we compare them to our own lives and experiences. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to stop, re-read, and highlight a section of a book because it was almost scary how much I related to the words. And, have you ever cried or laughed a little bit harder during a movie because the scene was eerily similar to your own, crazy life? Well, I have. Take a look at some posts that were inspired by either a book I read or a movie I watched:
- My Tattoo Changed My Life (written after reading E-Squared, by Pam Grout)
- What’s Right? (another E-squared inspired article…that Pam Grout is good!)
- Not Just Your Favorite Holiday Movie (written after watching The Holiday for the umpteenth time and seeing it in a whole new way)
3. When something interesting happens: This sounds pretty obvious, huh? But it’s true. Ideas have come to me when something out of the ordinary happened during my day or when my life reached a certain milestone and I took the time to reflect on it. These posts can often be more relatable because chances are others have either experienced a similar event in their own lives or they end up learning from your experience. See what I mean:
- Grandma in my Corner (written after a random phone call with my grandmother)
- 30 Things I’m Happy I Did Before 30 (written when I turned 30)
I’m sure the list could go on, but these are my top three best thinking places and conditions – for now. I mean, I’m currently in Starbucks and I have to say, I’ve had some pretty good thinking sessions here as well. Something about lattes, an easy listening playlist, and the slight hustle and bustle of people…really gets the mind working.
I think as long as we are inspired by something, whether it be during the morning hours or while hiking on a mountain trail, we will always produce quality thoughts and, in turn, writing pieces that are unique, relatable, and true to who we are.
*This post was written in response to the The Daily Post’s Daily Prompt for January 6, 2013: When and where do you do your best thinking? In the bathroom? While running? Just before bed, or first thing in the morning? On the bus? Why do you think that is? Photographers, artists, poets: show us THE BEST.
Definitely the car! That’s where some of my best story ideas are formed.
Exactly! That’s probably my top place, too.
My problem is I can’t seem to shut my mind off
whatever I am doing, watching Revenge (love it), having a massage, falling asleep!
My best thinking is usually in the shower!
Ooh yes! The shower is good one, too! And I agree – shutting your mind off is so hard. Revenge makes it easier for me because it’s just so good and suspenseful that I don’t want to think of anything else. It’s kind of like my escape : )
What a great post Natalie! I’m with you on that my top place where I let myself think is the car on my way to work. Living in LA you can imagine how many hours I get stock in traffic every day… Sometimes I get so lost on my own thoughts that I can’t even remember how I get home that day haha.
Haha! I’ve hear you…I’ve been so lost in thought that I’ve missed my exit on the highway!