Recently, I became aware of the fact that my thoughts rarely reach the level of verbalization. I think in preverbal "gestalts" that involve all the senses, thought primarily in terms of visual impressions and bodily sensations, mostly physical sensations in the chest and abdomen ("gut feelings"). This is particularly the case when I'm anxious. In terms of conscious, active thinking, my logic proceeds on a very abstract level. It mostly stays just below the level of verbalization.
I got into an argument with someone who insisted that I must be thinking in words, and that I was simply unconscious of it. But it's always made sense to me that thinking doesn't happen primarily in words. Think of it this way: if thought was formulated primarily at the level of language, how would we know what the next word should be? I believe we do think in "language", but that language isn't necessarily words. There is a level of cognition that precedes any linguistic expression. Language is simply a system of symbols or representations in the mind, of which verbalized language is only a shadow.
At any rate, I've gotten curious about how people experience their thoughts. Do you think in words, in the "stream of consciousness" flow of words, phrases, and sentences? Or does your thinking remain primarily below the level of verbalization, or circumvent verbalization for other forms of expression? This may also have correlates with Socionics type, but I'm not sure.
I ask because... it occurs to me that NOT allowing my thoughts to become verbalized is perhaps causing me problems. In particular, it limits my ability to moderate my mind. This allows for the most ridiculous negative self-evaluations, anxiety-inducing imagery, and other forms of intangible, but psychologically harmful thought processes, to get out of hand, unquestioned. And this poisons my climate of mind with a generalized, vague weather pattern of generalized shittiness. Most forms of psychotherapy rely on the patient to be able to verbalize the content of their thoughts. Journaling, writing, self-insight, etc. are all depending on this ability. But I find that it's not something I do automatically, as other people report doing. It's something that I have to make a concerted effort to do. It's an extra step. And I'm considering whether it would be helpful to make taking that extra step into more of a habit for my own benefit.