think of / think about someone


Senior Member

here is another question regarding "to think of" and "to think about". I read all the threads about it in this forum but I would still like to know your opinions. I've learned that they are often interchangeable. But I'm wondering if there is a slight difference in meaning between saying:
I think of you often.
I think about you often.

To me "to think of someone" means to remember or imagine someone. It's a rather simple process.

"To think about someone" implicates (?) a deeper way of thinking to me, to ponder, ruminate, cogitate, to try to figure out why someone said or did certain things or why he acted in a certain way.

Would you agree or am I overinterpreting it?

Thank you.
  • I agree there is sometimes a difference between the sense conveyed by 'of' and 'about' but leave it for our learned native speakers to explain. I just feel 'to think about' also conveys a sense of 'to care for'.
    I think I agree with Arcona, but "I think about you" can also mean ruminating on what that person is doing now, or even imagining what they/we may do in the future - it isn't only about the past.
    Thank you very much for your replies.
    It's very interesting to hear, velisarius, that "I think about you" can also refer to the future.

    Do you think most of you native English speakers would make the distinction mentioned above between "I think of you" and "I think about you" as the phrases both seem to be used equally often.
    I agree that "think about" may involve a deeper thought, compared to "thinking of" which might be not much more than just remembering.

    But I suspect that many native speakers use the two indiscriminately and interchangeably.