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Thinking and Trying

I love to think.

Part of the reason why this blog exists is because I love to think about ideas and play with them.

I am inspired by those who think.

Bonus points for those who think clearly.

For a long time, I have held the belief that you can really think your way through most things.

Thinking and planning go hand-in-hand, which is why I also love planning and am often the planner in our family.

Recently, I've started to re-think my love of thinking.

It's something I've defaulted to for a long time.

I want to default to trying instead.

At the start of this year, I shared a post about my favourite mental model, The Map is not the Territory (2 min read). If you don't have two minutes to read it, the two second summary is in the title itself.

There's a difference between reading a map and walking the territory that the map depicts.

Thinking, is about spending your time reading—or making—maps.

Trying, is about spending your time walking the territory.

It's about listening to the sounds, feeling the contour of the ground, and watching how others interact with the space. You can't get any of that from a map.

As I've started to make this shift from thinking to trying, what I've realized is that I actually love learning.

In my experience, you can learn a lot more—especially about yourself—by trying v.s. thinking.

Is trying possible in every situation? In other words, are there some situations where thinking is a more appropriate default response?

I am sure there are, but I'm not going to try and list them here.

If you've defaulted to thinking and you're feeling stuck, it's worth asking how you might try instead.

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