Tuesday, September 16, 2014

How to Think

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I like to think. I do it all the time in all sorts of places and about all sorts of thing. Many times, well okay, most times, where I am has nothing to do with what I'm thinking about.

Husband (looking over his menu): What are you thinking?
Me: Ummmm.... I think the lighter color of paint will look better in the bathroom.
Husband: Uh huh. I meant for dinner tonight. Here.
Me: I don't know, I haven't gotten that far yet.

Aside from synchronizing place/topic thinking there are different ways to think. There is Single Think and Joint Think. Single Think (ST) is what you do when you are single. All of your thoughts and anything you think up to do have no effect on anyone else but  yourself. The "Hey, I think I'll have ice cream and pop corn for dinner" thought and subsequent action is fine. It will not cause Child Protective Services to show up because you did not serve a healthy meal.

Joint Think (JT) is different and more difficult. It requires that after you have your thought you then have to have the we/us thought before any action can take place. "Hey, I think I'll have ice cream and pop corn for dinner. Wait! What would Little Man and Husband like? No. Wait. What would be healthy to have for dinner? Let's have chicken and rice for dinner."

As a child, I was taught to share with my siblings and to think about how the things I did or said would effect them and the family as a whole. That was reinforced in school - to think about others. Then, I became a teenager and my parents' tune changed. "You have to think for yourself. If your friend jumped of a bridge, would you?" And thus began Single Think and the movement away from Joint Think.

It's not as easy to move from Single Think to Joint Think as it is to go in the other direction. When Husband and I got married, it was very difficult (for both of us I'm sure) to change. "Sure, I'll go out after work for a drink or two with my colleagues. Wait. I should call Husband and let him know. Wait. Invite him. Wait. I should go home and make ice cream and pop corn for dinner. Wait...."

Joint Think is not easy or natural. And the best thing of all is when you find someone with whom your Joint Think matches - you have the same goals and you think in the same manner. It makes life easier. Fortunately, Husband and I share Joint Think. Just as awesome, my bestie and business partner, Allison, and I do too. And with two people to share the thinking with, I can think about more stuff!

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