Stoic Week – I think I think too much
I have restarted this blog post. I was going to write it about how I was an unconscionable jerk and how I judge people as the impressions of them that I have, rather than as the person they are. I had to stop that, why? Because I found myself doing the everything-thing:
Yeah, I managed to, in my effort to realise that I shouldn’t be treating people as if they are the impressions I have of them, develop negative and unhealthy emotions regarding my decisions and desires. New start then, I think too much. This is a shorthand, if I were to type out my full meaning it would be the following:
I think a LOT and sometimes when I’m thinking, I start accepting my beliefs and impressions as truth and reality. I then ruminate on them further and decide that these facts shouldn’t be, I want to try to change things, I realise that only part of what I want to change is under my control and the parts that I do control, I think ‘I’m too lazy and stupid to do that’. I end up feeling impotent, wretched and pathetic.
There is a flipside, however, I noticed it happening and can now act against that sneaky hate spiral. Preventing these thoughts from causing further damage. I’m just going to pause here and take a moment to feel good about that.
It seems like there is a lot of advice for when external factors are affecting your emotions but not a lot about when your feelings get in the way of doing what is right. This sometimes is something which makes me do the everything thing because, maybe I’m just not that good person if I can’t be bothered to put in the effort to put in the extra effort required to be good. But I suppose the excuse is ‘I’m only human’ and that I can always try again tomorrow. As long as I keep trying, I suppose that is the difference between good and bad.
But then good and bad isn’t an inherent trait of a person, it’s more the evaluation of their effects over time and, as Sirius says “the world isn’t split into good people and death eaters, we all have both light and dark in us”. I think the important takeaway from today’s task for me is to stop thinking as if your thoughts are as valid as real data.