Running away with my thoughts

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Just wondering if Twitter is changing the way I think.

Even just thinking that sentence through as I type it, I wonder if I might tweet it, and subconsciously estimate the character count. (54 if you include the full stop, which I may not)

I think of my best tweets when I’m running.

Well, they always seem good at the time. Some even feel profound, insightful, useful, helpful.

When I get home, they’ve vanished.

Thoughts in 140 characters or fewer, processed and filed away somewhere in my prefrontal cortex.

It used to bother me that I couldn’t remember them, but now I accept it’s just part of my internal discourse, described so insighfully by Haruki Murakami in his excellent book What I Talk About When I Talk About Running, (which I thoroughly recommend to anyone who runs).

A few weeks ago I had coffee with Matthew Solle, who recorded and summarised our conversation as part of a series he’s putting together on his website. Thankfully Matthew captured some of the things I feel quite passionately about in writing, including my inability to write some of my thoughts down.

Sometimes people kindly offer me advice, such as using my phone’s voice recording facility. I definitely plan to give it a go. I fear I may become too self-conscious and aware of the device to verbalise the thoughts as naturally as when in conversation. And if I commit some of my thoughts to writing, perhaps I might somehow kill them off.

But I also wonder whether sometimes what matters more to me is the thought process itself. To borrow that well-worn cliché, the journey is the destination.

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