Hurricane Irene Got Me Thinking – About Thinking

"Official U.S. Navy Image of Hurricane Irene"

Official U.S. Navy Image of Hurricane Irene

Everyone along the East Coast is frantic because Hurricane Irene is about to upset everyone’s plans for the weekend. But I’m looking forward to it. Yes, for real.

Governors have declared a state of emergency. And for the first time in my memory hospitals and nursing homes are going to be evacuated in some parts of New York City. I’m truly upset about the damage to life and property that Irene is likely to cause.

Time to Think

On the other hand, instead of taking the train to Connecticut on Sunday to visit friends, I’ll be forced to stay home. I’m stocking up on necessities like food, water and extra batteries. I may even be cut off from the world if we lose power – but I have a lot of candles. I’m actually looking forward to a free day that I hadn’t planned. Of course, I could do client work or write my next blog. But that wasn’t on my agenda for Sunday, so why should I do it?

No, instead I’m going to spend my time thinking – about my life, the future, how I can bring more balance into my life, and what makes me happy so I can do more of it.

I’m Tired of 24/7

Do you realize how most of us have gotten into the 24/7 routine of working, socializing and making business connections on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and all the rest? Our minds are always racing.

Will it be possible to restrain myself from taking a peek at my emails? I hope so. Time is so precious and we have so little of it that isn’t programmed with things to do.

I thought about going online and finding a book or article about how to think productively. Someone must have written about how get the most out of thinking. But I decided not to. I’ve just decided to hunker down on the couch and let my mind wonder where it may.

So delicious. I can’t wait.

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  1. Lynda — I had a choice, thinking or a good book. That was a tough one, because there is nothing better than curling up inside with a good book while it’s raining or snowing outside. These days, however, you’re more likely to be reading the book on a Kindle or Nook.

  2. Every morning I meditate for thirty minutes. I listen to my breath as long as I can before I get sucked back into thinking. When I get lost in my thoughts, telling myself crazy stories or mulling over a past experience, I label it thinking and I go back to my breath. I do this over and over again in an attempt to extend the amount of time that my brain is resting in the cradle of the breath without thought, in peace and joy. This process is like clearing out your temporary internet files. You return to work with greater clarity and creativity.

  3. All the best with your free thinking Sunday Jeannette and I hope the hurricane doesn’t turn out to be too destructive. You are right about being on tap 24/7 and it does become tiring. I do admire those like Amy who mediate as it does have many benefits.

  4. Amy — I admire you for meditating. When I try that I barely make it beyond a couple of minutes, but I know how beneficial it is.

    Thanks for the good thoughts, Susan. For the first time in the more than the 100-year history of the NY transit system, it will be shut down starting at noon on Saturday until after Hurricane Irene passes by. Also, for the first time, residents and patients in low-lying areas of the city are being evacuated. Scary.

  5. I agree. I usually come up with my best ideas when I am doing “nothing”
    Let me know how all this comes out for you

  6. Shoya — Well, I started thinking. But my thinking turned to the clutter on and around my desk. So I combined the two. By going through stuff that I hadn’t looked at in ages, it helped me to focus on — what I really want to focus on! You know as a “blue” in your Color Q system, I don’t like the details (I make myself do the small stuff well), so clearing out this stuff was highly beneficial. It’s like getting a new lease on life. Clean desk, clean slate, clear head for thinking!

  7. I think working and thinking 24/7 is a habit that many of us who work from home fall into. As soon as we lost our electricity during hurricane Irene, I reached for a book but it wasn’t for casual reading, it was a book on marketing for the self-employed. 🙂 I guess I just can’t help myself. Since my home is my workplace, I work more than I should. What I do to escape is get out of the house on my husband’s days off. We usually do something together even if it’s just running errands. That helps to keep me focused on my marriage while giving me a little break from work.

  8. Sherryl — I think mindless reading is great taking your mind off work. I read mysteries and really enjoy them. I may not remember anything about a story a week after reading it. But that’s not the point. It’s the pleasure of reading in the moment that has so much value.