Let me overthink about it

My brain, which is pretty sure it’s the star of every show, likes to do gymnastics when it thinks I’m trying to ignore it. When I try to sleep or meditate or give the rest of my organs a chance to do their thing without the brain cracking the whip and jumping up and down for attention, it likes to jerk on the reins a bit and show us all who’s boss.

This is simply what it does. As someone said (my clever brain has no idea now where I heard it; if you know, please tell me), “the brain secretes thoughts like the stomach secretes acid.”

But sometimes I don’t want to be a hostage to the thought parade, just like I wouldn’t want to be hostage to an acid parade. I try to calm the brain down so that other things can happen.

It’s sneaky, though.

I’ll sit down to the piano at night for my pre-bedtime noodle, and it will be going really well. You can’t play fluidly while you are in conscious control of all ten of your fingers and your pedaling foot, so this means you have to let your body take over the flow.

It’s right when I notice I’m in a nice state of flow that my brain knocks on the door and says, “Ah, this is going well!”

Clang. Wrong notes. Lost place.

Then the brain tries to put the apple-cart right, micromanaging, and soon there are apples flying everywhere and I forgot how to count.

Still, thank you for your service, brain. You do a lot. Sometimes you can take a breather, though.

From @morganharpernichols

2021 goals

In case you’re looking for inspiration, I made some sample 2021 resolutions:

  • Finally remember the password to that one bank account. Consider checking the balance.
  • Reduce the house plant death count (Story time: I think I killed four of mine in 2020. Two orchids I basically ripped apart with some flush of Hulk strength while trying to water them, and this is especially sad as I was watching them for a friend (sorry Elizabeth); and the spider plant and the Bolivian Wandering Jew decided they had been miserable for long enough and I clearly didn’t understand their needs, maybe I didn’t even want to understand their needs, and they were finally going. So this year my plan is to kill three or fewer.)
  • Meditate without playing Sudoku
  • Read that book you have been meaning to since you borrowed it from a friend in 2009
  • Follow your laundry’s care instructions
  • Get the vaccine
  • Eat more soup
  • Eat less soup
  • Brush teeth before noon
  • Stop reading the comments
  • Unpack that one box of random stuff from the last time(s) you moved

Hopefully those give you something to work with!

In seriousness, here’s what I plan for 2021:

  • Do one thing at a time
  • Speed up 5k running pace by 2 minutes per mile
  • Journal by hand 5 times a week
  • Keep writing Book Three

What are your intentions for this new year?