My job as an advertising consultant requires me to be on the constant “look-out” for new businesses and opportunities. After almost 3 years with this job, I find my self constantly reading every sign and logo on every building, every van , every car I pass. Now, that might not sound so bad, but my brain does not only read the text on the sign.No, it also processes what type of business is it, do I recognize the name as someone already advertising, what is their target group, which type of advertising would be good for them, how would and should I approach them to set up a meeting, and so on ; all within very few seconds. And it is exhausting !! This combined with a new iPhone I bought a few months back, where I can quickly check my emails, check Facebook, news, weather report and so on , have resulted in what might be considered a data overload syndrome!
I find myself being quite often overwhelmed with all the data my brain seem to process, and which might not even be very important data. More and more often do I feel a urgent need to simply just pull the cord on my brain and just find a quiet place with no computers, no phones. A place where information is not easily obtainable. Just a place in silence. A place of peace. The overload makes me irritable, overwhelmed and leaves with a little more negative attitude.
At this point you might be sitting and nodding in agreement with me or thinking “how old are you ? 80? Suck it up and welcome to the new digital world!!” . Well the point is , I am only 35 years old, so young enough to know of most of all the new tech gadgets and how to operate them, but also old enough to have lives without a mobile phone and the internet. And if I feel this way, I am sure a lot of other people out there are experiencing the same “overload”. The question is: do they recognize it ? What if you find yourself being more stressed because of information overload. The more information we take in, the more topics we need to create an opinion about and that can be stressful. Now don’t think I am not about spreading information and get people informed and educated. Believe me, education is a top priority in my book, but I do however put a question mark to the advantage of us having this easy access to non-quality information. Here comes the good ol’ saying “quality is better than quantity” to mind. Are we really doing us selves and our kids a favor by giving them all these gadgets with easy access to a world of sometimes useless information? don’t we need to counter it with some mindful and awareness exercise; such as obligatory meditation or yoga in schools ? or Thai chi? or reiki? Anything to give people a better body and mind awareness.
I believe it was Dalai Lama who said: “If every 8 year old in the world is taught meditation, we will eliminate violence from the world within one generation.”.
Whether you believe it or not, that is of course solely up to you, but I find it to be indeed an interesting observation with a lot of truth to it, so do yourself a favor and just stop for 5 minutes and think about what this woudl mean to your every day life and routine.
In today’s world things are moving so fast that we forgot to stop!To just stop and be in the present! Stop and smell the roses, go outside and sit with your face in the sun for 5 minutes. Turn off your computer, your TV, your music and just sit and breathe. It is hard. Sounds easy and simple, but you most likely will find it hard.The brain likes to go go go and now you ask it to stop??ya, it is hard. But believe me, it is worth it!! I am still working on it and with a full time job, two small kids, dogs , husband and a house, I have lots of things to occupy my day with and time just seems to fly by. But what I really find comfort in, is when I remember to stop and reflect. That is when time seems to slow down. Slow down to a pace where I can look at my life, me, remember the things I like to do and simply just be without any pressure or stress. It is quite liberating. But it is an effort and something I need to remind myself of every day, otherwise I jsut easily slip back into the “old” ways and just go , go, go.
Right now I sit in our city’s new library, across from my office , to just get away. Away from the demands of clients, demands of management for increased revenue, away from the responsibilities. I found a quiet place behind rows of good old fashioned paper books. A single chair not to close to anybody. My own newly acquired place of comfort away from the world.
SO I challenge you Today, right now . Go find your place of comfort. Go outside and sit down. Become aware of the temperature, sounds, birds, cars, trees and just be you for even 5 minutes. And breathe, just breeeeeeathe.