CW #8: DISTRACTION
DO YOU REALLY NEED ALL THIS?
Imagine: It is Tuesday morning and your alarm clock goes off much too early, as usual. While rushing through your apartment to gather all essential items for the day, you catch yourself sitting in the train or stuck in traffic, still dozing. What a comfort to know that there is this small gadget called smart phone carrying most valuable information, such as payment data, annual subscription for public transportation, job appointments, social connection on a virtual basis, personal “pressure” presentations of things “to-be-done”, this includes single appointments and group activities as well as further related applications that justify their presence by pretending to manage time efficiently. Eventually you clock in at work and your clever companion guides you to all upcoming events. Until finally you curl up in your bed, eating micro-waved “food”, watching non-sense entertainment to fade away, while comparing yourself to others, mostly unknown individuals on social media networks. What happened within those fourteen hours of your lifetime? WELCOME TO CW #8: DISTRACTION!
Last week´s post presented ideas on material emergence and bonding. The formation of industrial countries enables societies to gather individual belongings and gain appreciation. However, societies living in so-called advanced civilizations stuck its members into hard and time-consuming labor. From now on accumulating material items and its reliance on personal development decide on the way we perceive and shape individual life concepts. Identification runs by objects and material wealth, in many cases. What is missing is space for personal development. At this point I am not referring to “time” on purpose because personal growth is not about having time, it is about creating space for its expression.
Less is more - why is that? While most advertisements are based on palming its most valuable and needed offers off on society, the idea of creating space becomes more and more difficult. No matter how tiny it may be, if there is room it needs to be filled with something supposedly beneficial. It can be of practical usage or mental occupation, satisfying a misleading point of social affiliation. Besides, emptiness resembles vacuity even standstill. In high movable and flexible societies as experienced nowadays, it is seen as rather ineffective and of no profitable use to experience tranquility. Quite the contrary, anything has to happen for a reason, fast and spotless. Thus, emptiness is more and more considered to be worthless. Due to the broad variety of pleasurable offers, it seems pointless to refrain from its advantages. Why not buy a new kitchen because the given one is not enough of current style? Why not spend most of the salary on clothes and accessories that will lose its “up-to-date-tag” in less than twelve months? Why not pointlessly consume brand new technology that wants to be replaced every year? Why not eat Mac and Cheese on the moon?
Distraction is everywhere. Moreover we tend to feel attracted by its existence since it allows us to dwell upon lethargy. Furthermore, diversion occurs primarily in group structures, for instance in schools or on the job. Being part of selected groups does not only lead to a sense of well-being, it is a natural instinct of survival. Therefore we adjust and squeeze ourselves into social boxes, metaphorically, that can barely hold an apple. Yes, it is very easy to step back on personal desires to create a life everyone else is living. This is the most common way to gain social acceptance, to fit into social fabrics without standing out, to be part of something. Something we, the society, then calls social movement. And how great is it to be part of that?
Living in a comfort zone does have social advantages. Besides that, it enables the genesis of trust and support which are key elements in personal growth matters. However, personal growth requires space for being able to arise, develop, transform and grow. In societies with much distraction on real and virtual terms, its arrangements become more and more interlaced. We distract ourselves from self-realization and self-fulfillment because it is easy not to. Truly, there is plenty of possibilities, as a matter of fact I would like to say opportunities. The most common motto these days implies the content: You may be whoever you wish to be! So why don´t we?!
Nevertheless, it is our responsibility to reject unnecessary and harmful elements of distraction to experience personal growth in flow. In science flow is described as a state of complete immersion in an activity. A mental state of being involved in a situation for its own sake. Transferred to the topic of personal growth, we are looking for an activity that allows us to experience ourselves, to be in flow with ourselves, just for the sake of being. Therefore, we are interested in creating space in order to rebuild an inside connection. Sincere space. We want to devote attention to the space itself, its emptiness and calmness, no distractions. This is the only way to establish a path that leads to individual ideas and desires. Let emptiness reveal your emotions and guide you to self-awareness. Let all of it that is you express itself. Get yourself in mind of how much unwanted thoughts, objects, even people surround you. All of this may be unhealthy and limit personal development. As time goes by, get rid of distractions, such as things that way you down, even emotional that you may have gotten used to. Ask yourself: Do I really need all this? And remember: personal growth is a work in progress!
I want you to have a new week full of empty slots to reconnect, feel and enjoy yourself!