Since I restarted this rusty old engine to see whether it can actually run this time around, the only thing that has been running is my mind. There are a million other things that I am thinking about doing that I am not doing but off late, this has also become one of those things. However, the difference lies in the fact that this is actually something I am excited about. Something I actually want to do. Something I don’t actually dread. Something I could potentially fall in love with. And therein lies the pressure. Again. Since my last entry I’ve been pondering over things to write about. There are the standard ideas – love, procrastination, empathy – which are all very wonderful topics to write and close to my heart, but it is as if the very thought of conceiving thoughts around them literally feels like a conception. I am pregnant with so many ideas that I might just purge them out in a torrent of irrational mess. I just can’t seem to be making up my mind.
I’ve always wondered how people make up their mind. For me, it has always been something to be pondered to the last minute or beyond. Sometimes I don’t even take the decision and let eternity bear the weight of that indecision. How do you make up a mind? A brain is a manifold thing, again quite literally (as you can see I am incapable of talking in metaphors) as it seems like half a soccer ball of many fleshly folds that somehow fall into ordered sections of different capabilities. And yet, it feels like a jumbled mess, where my bowl of cereal somehow reminds me of a spring day 10 years ago or a Scarlett Johansson film reminds me of a certain colour of nail varnish. Writers a hundred years ago tried to map the randomness of the mind through “stream-of-consciousness” novels. The idea of somehow being able to map a pattern and a history, deduce a personality and tendencies from these mappings might be useful but those just remain few, enormously interesting, fictional consciousnesses. I am very unlikely to even consider mapping my own boring stream.
The idea of concentration, thus, is also alien to me. How can you bring, if not all, the majority of your attention towards a single object or activity for a prolonged period of time? What happens to the other stations of your brain if only one is desired to be active? Being newly in love is a very easy example of such concentration. All other stations of the brain (like reason, priorities, even displeasure) shut down or merge to find themselves in new work-suits of a less boring colour (love is not red in my mind). However, this does not concern making up your mind. If I have decided to allow myself to fall in love with someone, there isn’t much making up my mind to do. The call to make your mind happens when it comes to relatively more challenging stuff. Like selecting which toothpaste to buy at the supermarket. Of course, you also have to be able to care. I, for one, find myself caring more about my choice of toothpaste than life decisions such as….well, I am too embarrassed to tell.
And maybe that is it. The real problem with making up your mind is not that the workstations of your brain have too much variegated stimuli to process. Maybe what it is trying to do is delay the really serious but difficult decisions, put them in the back burner, work out some ideas on them and let them take centre stage once they are ready to take charge. Make changes. Potentially re-course the mind to other fresh, fleshly folds. Maybe, making up your mind – long, drawn out, unpredictable and stressful state as it maybe, can also be a constructive thing. A sign of growth. It might well be worth the wait. The other option is to break up after all, as sung by Siouxie Sioux.