Yes, that is a line from Arctic Monkeys song, ‘Perhaps Vampires Is a Bit Strong But…’
For now, toss aside whatever you think of Alex Turner & Co, as this writing is neither about Alex or his band. Although, I think we can all agree his 2014 BRIT Award speech left him looking like a bit of an arrogant dork. That rock ‘n’ roll, eh?
Still, the words, ‘thinking about things, but not actually doing the things’ is something that can apply to absolutely everyone. Just the wording is so wonderfully vague. We all think and never act on things.
Though, perhaps not in the way young Alex had intended his words to be taken, as the sentence is believed to be about situations between himself and a manager/producer/industry head who claims the band should have stayed local, pursued something with more of a financial gain, only to be of their own selfish interest rather than that of Arctic Monkeys. Vampires indeed.
Regardless, for me, the things I think of, but end up not actually doing the things, are anything writing related. I have amassed hundreds of ideas but, unfortunately, never actually do enough to allow it to become more than an idea. A light bulb moment that promptly blows.
For every post I do make, whether that be to my own website or others, there are at least 5 other half baked drafts with anything from between 10 to 1000 words. Can’t forget about the 100 edits and reworks before actually hitting that publish button either. Or, in other cases, fully crafted articles are just left to rot deep in the depths of Evernote, sinking further down with each new day-lasting idea.
Then you start to think… maybe it’s not the writing that’s not good enough — it’s that I’m not good enough. You fall deeper, lower down into the self-pity mindset that everything good you think you’ve successfully wrote was just a fluke and can never be replicated. Impostor syndrome has now truly kicked in.
Oh, it gets worse. Since everything you write never gets finished, why write at all? The same thing will only happen again. You begin to accept it. It becomes comfortable. Doing nothing is just easier than doing something. It snowballs. You’re idea of good enough is now unachievable, far beyond the reality of what you deem possible.
You have now fell beyond the realms of procrastination and follow the path of accusation. You blame yourself and it lies solely at your own feet.
You breathe a heavy sigh, exit your room and grab a snack. There’s always tomorrow.
The seemingly bottomless pit of discouragement is an easy one to slump into. It may even be cosy, and if you’re really used to it, justifiable. Acting without purpose, referred to as niksen by the Dutch, is a whole supposed lifestyle. To be completely conscious and content with nothingness in the moment. To understand it is always now. No intention of forcing your focus to return, allowing yourself to transcend into a state of tranquility. Bliss.
Clearly it all sound good, with a ‘niksen’ outlook believed to be the greatest of stress relievers. But, at what point does doing nothing prevent future bouts of something? Unfortunately for us, there is no real answer — but allow me to keep talking anyway.
Is it right to occupy your precious time with empty thoughts of nonsense? Of course it is! Is it wrong to believe these moments alone will accomplish whatever requires doing? Eh, probably.
Doing is the main output of thinking. The outcome of imagination.
Without the ‘do’ you’re left with half the equation. Like a supercomputer capable of running the most intensive programs, but simply not.
What would be of the world had Kafka never put their hand to writing, or had Marcellus Gilmore Edson never thought to combine both peanuts and butter… you get the gist.
In short, simply do and sense will prevail. Not by way of some random epiphany, but by attempt. You quell that voice and — in my own case — you write, regardless of outside perspective and instead for you own outlet and escape. For betterment and understanding of your own thoughts and feelings. If others enjoy your doing, well, that’s just a bonus.
So that’s it. This is my breakout. This writing not only represents how a toxic mindset like that can be overcome, but so easily. However much I think, I will also do.