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The Tinkered Mind
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January 14th, 2020
Sitting with a problem and trying to figure it out can be excruciating. You feel dumb, you’re confused, you don’t really, know what to try next.
But this is the default state of learning. Everyone says they love to learn new things, but without this context, few would say that they enjoy feeling dumb, confused and uncomfortable.
Unfortunately, this is what the unknown has in store for us.
Luckily, these feelings are just that: feelings. And they succumb to strategies like most anything else. Think of all those tense moments in action movies when stress is running high but our protagonist is suddenly beset with an intricate problem. They slow down and say out loud:
“I can figure this out.”
There’s a fair amount of faith wrapped up in that sort of statement. Be sure, we should have a short leash on a word like ‘faith’.
We should have faith in things like gravity. It’s incredibly reliable in that you know when you drop the coffee mug it will definitely hit the ground, along with pretty much everything we do during a given day which functions with the implicit belief that gravity will keep doing it’s job. And yet, we don’t really understand what the hell is going on to make us stick to big massive objects like the earth. So for faith, it must be something incredibly reliable while it’s inner workings remain a mystery.
So faith does turn out to be a good word when we hear ourselves say I can figure this out.
We’ve figured out plenty of things before and if we just put in the requisite time and energy, the next puzzle is bound to give way it’s secrets also.
We sit and stare at the problem and often we feel as though we’re getting no where, but then out of the blue, or rather, out of that mysterious mind we have where seems to sit our consciousness, an idea pops, seemingly out of nowhere. We try it. And boom. Problem solved.
That requisite time and energy is similar to an enzyme, or the activation energy required for a reaction to occur in chemistry. Without either and nothing happens.
Without the time and energy devoted to a problem, it doesn’t get solved.
But put in that effort sooner, and sooner comes the answer.