Writing as a means of slowing down

One of the reasons I didn’t enjoy writing before was that my brain thinks too fast for my hands. Ideas and branches of thought flood my mind as I write, but my hands aren’t fast enough to put these fleeting thoughts on paper.

The result? Writing was reliving the same battle that started in my brain and ended with my hands hurting from trying to keep up with the flow, and my psyche frustrated and exhausted.

Over time I learned that unwritten ideas and thoughts aren’t as solid and complete as I thought. I noticed whenever I have to explain them to another person in detail, I always have a few moments of realization – Ah! I missed a piece here, Aha! Here’s how we can prevent X from happening! Here’s something that I assumed should be true, but I’m not 100% certain if it is.

This made me think, how come I noticed these things when I’m explaining my ideas to another person but not when modeling, designing, or working on it in my head?
Then I noticed that the same thing also happened when I wrote things down.

The common thread here, in my opinion, is slowing down.

Whether I’m explaining something to another person, or writing it down (which is also a form of explaining it to another person, even if you write for yourself), I’m forced to slow down, I’m forced to control the flood of thoughts, and make sure the perceived look, the representation of what’s coming out of my mouth, or put on paper looks as close as possible to how I imagined it in my mind.

This slowing down gives me time to take on the role of an observer parallel to the narrator, it allows me to – in parallel – watch the flow from the beginning till the end, see all the implicit assumptions I’ve made, and the gaps that I brushed over or didn’t even see in the first place.

I’ve decided to use writing as means for slowing down, and – I know it’s an oxymoron – as an ‘active meditation’.