In Search of My Father 2017 Writing Project

In Search of My Father 2017 Writing Project
In Search of My Father, 2017 writing project supported by The National Lottery through the Arts Council of Northern Ireland

Thursday, 27 April 2017

THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX? NAH, THINK INSIDE YOUR HEAD!!


Thanks to social media, there are more gurus and experts than at any time in the past. We are awash with wisdom. We are wading in waves of wondrous advice, We are clobbered daily with cliches to assist our well-being. We are coaxed to get out of our comfort zones. And we are encouraged to think outside the box.  

A lot of this "change your life" stuff is cobblers but the box thing has always interested me.

Who owned the first box and who was the first thinker outside of it? What was in the box before it was an empty box that we could climb into, get a mental block and then get out of it to think things through?  When was the decision made to get in and out of a box as a process of contemplation? What happened to the original thinker’s box? When did thinking inside the box become such an untrendy thing to do?  We hear this “outside the box” stuff so often that is has become pretty meaningless, rather like that rocket science blah.  If we all thought outside the box, some guru would start to encourage us to do the opposite.  

We never seem to elaborate on the “think tank” idea by suggesting that people should think outside of the tank, do we?  If we had our thinking cap on, no one suggests we think with the cap off.  The inventor of exterior box thinking thought he was onto something and I wonder if he ever considered thinking about his invention inside or outside of another receptacle altogether – a bin, a carton, a crate, a chest, a basket, a hamper, a cauldron, etc, etc.

To take it to extremes, what about a tropical fish thinking outside the aquarium, or a dog thinking outside the kennel, or a bird thinking outside the nest, or an undertaker thinking outside the hearse or a window cleaner thinking outside the bucket? Okay, I’ll stop this nonsense.

Let’s get rid of the box and just, er, think inside our heads!


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