Tuesday, September 1, 2009

It's worth it. Now what do we do?

In yesterday's post, I wrote about how years of studying music has ruined the leisurely, unadulterated enjoyment of music for me. On the other hand, it has also allowed me to recognized gem moments that I otherwise won't have the heightened awareness to spot. From the comments, the consensus is yes, it's worth it.

All we have to do, is somehow deal with the critical mind.

Million dollar question: how? whack it on its head every time it surfaces? Yell "lalalalalalala" so we won't hear it? Trick it to go to someone else's brain?

I like how Tanita put it:

"But some study has to be put into learning to disengage the critical, too."

Study: that's a strong, active verb. I wonder if there are standard procedures that psychologists or other people studying the brain or learning have come up with ways to help us develop the ability to turn off the critical mind. Right now, thinking about how not to think critically is akin to remembering to forget: the very act of trying to do something defeats itself.

I would love to hear your thoughts.


T. Anne said...

OK. I was a therapist for seven years and here is what I gleaned. When said negative thought pops into the brain you must counter act it immediatley with two positive thoughts. This may go on for months or a life time depending how stubborn you are but indeed it does get the brain to stop picking on you eventually.

Yat-Yee said...

T. Anne: appreciate your professional advice. If it doesn't work to curb my critical ear, it may work in other areas of my life.

MG Higgins said...

This may sound airy-fairy, but when I find myself in my head (which is where my consciousness is when I'm listening or reading critically), I shove the whole experience into my heart and listen or read from there. Does that make sense? I try to bypass my brain.

a. fortis said...

Really interesting question--one I ask myself often when I'm reading and feel like my critical reading-as-a-writer brain is hindering my enjoyment of the story as such.

Not sure I can offer much advice, except that I seem to have gotten a little better at turning that off over time.