I talk a lot here about going to camp and other far away from the modern
world places and how it is cleansing to the mind and the soul. I think it
cuts the chatter. I know it cuts out the negativity that can slip into our
lives under cover of darkness like those little things we used to be afraid of
at night. When we were young we knew to fear the stuff in the back of our
closet and under our bed. But now, as adults we simply don't recognize
them sometimes behind their fake smiles and general conversation. They are
people and situations and mindsets that do very little for us but we are used to them, or maybe we feel loyal to them or maybe even we are afraid to let go of them because we have come to depend on them in some manner.
When I was a little girl I was very sensitive. Hard to believe now I realize but it is true. LOL. When things would close in on me or I was unsure or just felt "ikky" I would always turn to nature. And I do the same now with camp or outdoor projects. There is nothing like dirt to cure the world's negative tendencies.
I think to cope with daily life you sometimes have to ask yourself - what am I getting from this? It isn't a
selfish question. You think it is because you have been trained to think that way. You were a good girl and put your napkin in your lap when you were told to do so. I bet you did! ;) It is OK, so did I. But, we must learn this: ME FIRST. And in the land of ME FIRST you ask yourself - what am I getting from this? Whether it be job, friendship, relationship, membership, community, family, etc. Ask it. Then listen clearly for the answer because it is there. You just have to let it in.
If the answer is that you are getting love, respect, caring, growing...well, carry on then! But it is likely that if you have to ask the question these aren't the things you are getting. So then comes decision time.
Obviously there are some things one can't just move on from in a split second. Others we can quite easily though and we should.
The Internet is a glorious thing. A wealth of information right at your fingertips and so many wonderful people to meet and get to know. But, like any school, community, city, planet, there are things that will drain you and take rather than give, pick away rather than put back and generally suck the life out of you while you keep coming back for more. It isn't even the fault of anyone sometimes. It is just the nature of people
and the oh so very vast yet very, very small world we live in.
I grew up in a rather small town. The population was around 700 to 800 I think. Of course I am of that generation that remembers when we didn't have no Internet but man I never will forget.... So, yeah, OK I am older. There WAS NO jumping on-line to meet, learn, veg, talk, hide. My outlets were nature, fantasy, books and music. I would walk two miles to the library just to immerse myself in something other than reality. I would hike all day with my dog. I would pretend to be someone else, somewhere else and most of the time I actually believed it. And if the night was clear and I could place the radio in exactly the perfect spot, I could actually tune in a program called Rock Over London that was a broadcast on the major rock station out of Pittsburgh. That was where I discovered punk music. Books were where I learned about elves and faeries. Fantasy was how I dealt with mundane life.
And I knew....well I knew what I KNEW from my own experience and I trusted that experience AND my instincts. I think we don't do that very well anymore. I think we start to question ourselves too readily when there is so much information, opinion and chatter available to us at the click of a key. I think we forget what we even like or are capable of and/or what is relevant. Instead of doing what is best for us we listen to the next expert in whatever it is we think we give a shit about and we do this because we should, right? Because it is the "in" thing to care about, be, look like... We forget what we knew or thought or believed because the person "talking" to us has a certificate or won a contest or wrote an eBook or says that he/she knows better than we do about whatever subject it is we are obsessed with and of course we are obsessed with it because we have ALL.THIS.INFORMATION readily available and if we can just piece it together perfectly then it will all make sense, right?
Do you see why we all feel nuts? And alone? And less than we are?
And this is what I have been dealing with on some level for almost a year now. So, in the last few months I have really cut back on my web time and even my time on things related to this person I am on-line and really really asked myself that question. Remember the question? Yes - what am I getting from this?
That question led me to contemplating a shift in my practice. It will likely result in a change in my podcast work, my writing, my genetic spiritual make-up if I can go so far.... That question is what led me to stop frequenting "fitness and health" sites and try to listen to my own mind and experience instead, not to mention my own body that I have lived in for almost 50 years. That question led me to physically purge a great deal of junk I had accumulated over time recently. It led me to explore a deeper relationship with my horse whether others agreed with my methods or not. It let me rest. Then it got me off my ass and pulled me back into the world. So, that question is allowing me to OMG can you dig it? ~ ride, read, run, fantasize, listen to and play music, laugh, dance, cook, dream, rest and even get some damn work done.
That question brought me back to...me. And it brought me back to the earth and the fact that in the end I have to trust and be OK with myself. We all do. That is ALL we need to do...