When we use the verb, “to think,” we can imply opinion or consideration by using either the simple or continuous tenses.
Simple tense – I think
If we want to express our opinion or belief, we don’t usually use the continuous.
We can express this in the past, present and future.
Past simple: “He thought the presentation could be better.”
Present simple: “I think that’s a fantastic idea.”
Future: “What will she think about it?”
Continuous tense – I’m thinking
If we want to expression consideration or contemplation, it is preferable to use the continuous.
We can also express this in the past, present and future.
Past continuous: “He was thinking of changing careers.”
Present continuous: “She is thinking of resigning from her job.”
Present perfect continuous: “I have been thinking about it.”
Future continuous: “I will be thinking about it.”
* Please note: There are some exceptions
Both “thinking” and “think” can mean “to contemplate” or “to reflect on.”
- “I’ve been thinking about it, I think about it all the time.”
In the present perfect, it is more likely that it’s about consideration rather than opinion.
- “I have thought about it for a while.”