Sometimes…just sometimes, I feel like I am something more than this body I am living in! The body parts suddenly don’t seem to be parts of me… I get confused over who I am. My mind tells me I am that mute voice which I am listening to. The constant blurb of words going through my mind distracts me and zap….I am back to myself, mind and body one again, feeling like a crazy person who has nothing better to do than drift away!
I used to feel a lot of this in my childhood. May be that was just boredom setting in and making my mind wonder about unreal things. May be that happens now too sometimes when my mind isn’t preoccupied with work, while I am doing the regular, repetitive everyday chores.
I wonder if any other person has these thoughts or it is just me. But if I do some deep thinking, then it is perfectly normal for my mind to wander and feel detached. If we weren’t constantly surrounded by people both real and virtual (social media, yes!) then everyone can do some soul searching.
The fear of being alone, being left out, missing out on stuff and updates about life of everyone around us has made us addicted to virtual people. So much that we don’t give real people precedence over the lives and pictures of virtual people. We need to stay in touch, know and share the details of every vacation, dinner, dates, outings, even movies or even the music that is pumping in our ears!
Why so? why can’t we just listen to music without telling everyone that we are? Why can’t we eat our dinner over with our friends without the urge to share that with every Tom Dick and Harry in our friend-list. Why can’t we just be happy with the real friends who are present with us?
Just because there is an option to share in social media, we do it. We don’t look at the other option which is being stripped of our choice. The choice to Not Share!
The other option,
…to just not share right when you are out with your friends, or family. There should be an unspoken rule that you don’t try to peek at the virtual people when you are with Real People!
We really are growing apart from ourselves and from the people who live around us, near us… Let us do some Maths here.. If we have suppose X minutes to spare and relax in an hour and have a phone or tablet at our side, we prefer to spend 70% of our time trying to read mails, checking out all the social media updates and messages, not really posting anything, just checking! And the rest 30% of the time would go to the people who are sitting besides us.May be if the other person is also a fan of social media, you would gladly spend 30% more of your time discussing social media! And suppose the other person really wanted to talk to you, then I am guessing the 20% time would go fighting about why that what you were doing was so damn important that you couldn’t talk to the person sitting beside you!
I am sure this happens! Hey, I am not here to just complain about how internet sucks! On the contrary, I respect the internet. I have learnt a lot sitting here where I am right now and gaping at the computer. I try to learn new things, read good articles and I have learned so much from the the internet in the last few years. Blogging, crafting, were which I self-learnt. I even finished a Master’s degree thanks to internet.
But I prefer to have a set schedule for social medias. I don’t overstuff my brain with it because I know it drains me. The WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram…everything is loaded with information…about other people’s lives! So, I catch up with them at a set time. There is no emergency! No one will stop smiling in the photos if I hit the ‘like’ button a little later n the day!
I get so overwhelmed with all the news sometimes that I just mute my WhatsApp messenger. May be it is just because I am a quiet person! But on second thought may be everyone should do that once in a while. I don’t check out every update on Facebook at the earliest or every message that pings on WhatsApp. And believe me when I say that I had to train myself to do that. I had that strong urge to grab my phone when it pings…But no, I am important right now! Anyone else having important stuff to discuss would call me (which sadly no one does!).
I rather look at my son’s sleeping face while he tries so hard to keep his eyes (which is funny in a cute way) closed than looking at my phone. That is way more pleasing and I am sure I won’t have that opportunity in a few more years. I am sure Facebook isn’t going anywhere till then! May be then I will be glued to my smart phone! Or not! May be I will have other important things to do at that time like pursue my hobbies (which I have started already)!
Many people just take off from social media when it becomes too much and then it is so difficult to stay in touch with them. I don’t want that to happen with me. I am practicing moderation, prioritising and then giving time to everything I need to do in a day…well almost everything, atleast as much as that can be done in 24 hours!
Inorder to escape the clutch of the negative effects of the internet, we need to create a balance. We need to learn, instead of stare at the screen. We need to read articles instead of skimming and scanning unimportant news. We need to keep ourselves entertained, stay in touch with friends but don’t lose touch with the real people around us as well as with ourselves.
In order to stay in touch with ourselves we need to disconnect, do nothing, even if it is for a few minutes. We need to let our mind wander, feel free and then let it connect with the body we are graced with. We need to be more mindful and be more happy. We need to count our blessings in the actual people who stand by us when we need them. We need to stop staring at the screen and stare at the person inside us, at our soul, to feel the connection, that we are here in the real world. We are alive, blessed.