Today’s life is full of complications. All advances in technology around us has actually made our lives more complicated than simple. Every day we are bombarded by tons of information from facebook, twitter etc., from instant messages to instant coffee, everything is instant today with a promise that it will save us time and provide us energy to do more things. Yet we are filled with more and more anxiety.
It is common these days to see people sitting together not talking with each other and immersed in displays of their phones. In a similar analogy, just imagine if friends met 20 years back in a restaurant and instead of talking, everyone get busy in reading newspaper or a flashy magazine. If someone from 80’s could travel to today’s time, he will be shocked. Growing up with this technical revolution in last 20 years, I don’t think our lives have become any better or exceedingly happier.
To all those feeling overwhelmed with technology and instant this and instant that, a simple guide can help:
Simply Disconnect – In this always on, always connected world we need to learn to disconnect. I remember in early 2000s, internet was slow and expensive. It was charged as per number of hours used. One used to connect with online world only once in a while. In those days, we rarely received one to one personal email. Things got managed with a humble phone calls. Today the traffic of one on one messages has not increased much however amount of spam has increased manifold. All this spam being “spam” fill your brain with unnecessary stuff. Sometimes I wonder why people keep on checking their messages again and again, as if world will collapse if they do not respond within seconds of receiving it.
Simply by following a practice of 2000s can give us immense mental peace. Just connect once or twice in a day to check and respond to those messages or connect to internet when you really need to make that bill payment or book that movie ticket. The best thing about connecting to internet only when you need is that it will also make your phone battery last longer and you will not need to carry those heavy battery banks or look for that charging point. Remember, technology and internet is supposed to be our humble slave and not vice versa.
Lesser things (Less means more) – Less things means more peace, more time and relaxed mind. In this world filled with ad blitz, it is difficult not to get influenced and buy those shiny “stuff, stuff and more stuff”. Modern marketing techniques excels at selling you things you do not need. They achieve their own greed for success and money through you by selling the stuff you do not need. A simple guide here is to distinguish between need and desire. No, you do not need to become a Buddhist monk to lead a simple life. Whenever there is craving to buy “stuff”, just evaluate whether you really need it. Simply put, there is no need to think about stuff you need, just get it. Also there is no need to think about stuff you don’t need, just leave it there. Unnecessary things will eventually drain your time and energy.
The above two simple steps will gradually make you calm and will give you a lot of peaceful time. If you do not invest this time wisely, chances are you will soon again fall into trap of technology, internet and buying more “stuff”. So what do you do with more time. You need to invest all this new found time for activities and hobbies you want to practice but always made an excuse that you do not have enough time. Meet your old friends or family members. Have direct conversations with those around you. Cultivate hobbies or engage in sports. Hobbies not only give our brain a break from monotonous schedules, it actually give our brain new grey cells and stimulate creativity. An engaging hobby is equivalent to meditation in many sorts. It could be photography, writing, reading, painting or just listening to music.
In today’s world simple living is not so simple yet with small consistent daily efforts, it can bring us can bring us immense, fulfilling and lasting peace.