Today’s drabble prompt is:
The pounding behind my temple dances in time to the beat of my pulse. If death by overthinking is a thing then my time must surely be nigh. I force attention back to the words before me. They scatter across the page, stubbornly uncooperative. I’ve read this five times already; it just won’t stick.
Frustrated I close my eyes and lean back in the chair. I let my mind quiet. I feel the very air wrap around my body, blanketing me. Cocooning. And then it comes to me, almost unbidden. Everything falls into place. The solution; the answer; understanding. Uncomplicated.
You may or may not be interested to know that, actually, the mind does work this way. There are two types of thinking – focused, and diffuse. They are both important in their own ways. If you are stuck trying to learn something then the best thing you can do is take a break. Let your mind wander; your brain will keep working on the problem in the background, and you just may find yourself finding the answer.
It’s this kind of thinking which is why so many people have their flashes of inspiration when they’re in the shower, or taking a drive, or dropping off to sleep. Just try to make sure you have somewhere to make notes of the inspiration, so they don’t get lost in the ether!
PS, if you want to learn more about these ways of thinking and other methods of dealing with complicated problems I would strongly recommend Learning How To Learn, a course from UC San Diego offered on Coursera. I studied it a few months ago and found it very interesting.