Pick a contentious issue about which you care deeply — it could be the same-sex marriage debate, or just a disagreement you’re having with a friend. Write a post defending the opposite position, and then reflect on what it was like to do that.
Talking to oneself is not crazy. It’s actually even normal.
What is normal? Normal is but an illusion. For a spider, it’s normal to eat bugs every day. For the bugs, it’s not normal to be part of the menu of a spider. Normal is relative.
It’s normal to talk to oneself. They even have an actual term for it: intrapersonal communication. And who uses intrapersonal communication? Novelists who create conflicts, reporters who relay stories, accountants who figure numbers, debaters who must argue. The actors behind the curtains, programmers in front of the computers, cartoonists in front of their papers, teachers in front of their students. A couple in a very awkward situation, friends and strangers whose conversations just died, a team who is brainstorming, a class who is trying to answer a teacher’s question. A toddler mimicking adults. An adult impersonating others.
From the spoken to the written word, intrapersonal communication is employed by those who wish to communicate and to improve it further. If others are to understand what you’re saying, you must understand it yourself first.
Do you not stare at your mirror and pick at the flaws or marvel at the beauty reflected therein? Do you not console yourself after a very bad day? Do you not ask yourself questions when situations do not make sense? Do you not exclaim and declare things to yourself? If you are not talking to yourself, then who were you talking to? And why were you speaking at all? Who else would benefit from that?
Talking to oneself is crazy. Who does that?
I know who. See those people covered in grease and grime, the very ones who have forgotten what a bath or decency is like. They blabber on and on to an unseen companion. They hold arguments and debates with their own self and who’s to say who has won?
What is normal is to talk when others are around, when there are actual humans listening to you.
People who say that talking to oneself is normal are nut jobs themselves. They too should have themselves checked. There’s just not enough room in the loony bin for all of them.
This is tiring.
Holding a debate and taking both sides is tiring. It’s mentally exhausting. And I know my bias affects how I answer for the opposite side but physical exhaustion contributes to this—I just danced for about 30 minutes before I started this. It’s only now that I feel stable yet drained.
Looking from the other POV isn’t easy. It’s limiting when you force yourself. And when you express it, it doesn’t sound compelling. It lacks soul, fire, and conviction. It doesn’t have the faith that makes it sound alive.