checkedoutI have had to really pull back and disconnect from the news, media and constant visual and auditory assault from corporate marketing. “Had to” may sound strong, but I believe there is truth in that for me. I had to for my own sanity and to connect with what feels right and true for me. Not what someone else wants me to think, do, wear, drive or vote for.

I did this a few years ago during a week long silent retreat. I had rented a remote cabin with no TV, radio, internet or phone. I wasn’t doing it to break the habit or pattern of following the news and constant marketing. However I found that by shutting it off, I no longer was as stressed-out; in a state of emotional turmoil; or just plain angry, scared or fearful all the time! And I am someone who doesn’t normally think I am that easily hooked. But a week without the noise revealed a lot!

We are bombarded by messages, memes images and positions from people who have a vested interest in separating us. Making us feel like we are missing something, under attack or losing something. Aligning or classifying us into assorted demographics.

We are more easily influenced and manipulated when we are off balance. Off our center. And controlling and directing the message, side or perspective has become an blended combination of art and science.

Everything has been taken into consideration. The color, font, image, sound, light, environment, clothing, size, shape, taste and more. We are saturated with marketing that influences our every choice. Some subtle.., but a lot of it obvious and in our face. So even being choosing to disconnect from it.., I still feel overdosed by it. I feel out of balance.

And I am doing the same thing too! I am spinning my story. My need to escape and make it all about some unknown “them” out there – is its own form of separation. Even if that is not my intention. My inability or lack of desire for dealing with other people’s messages, perspectives or must-haves.., creates a divide between me and them.

I get that. But I still want the break from it. I want to once again have a sense of or find sure footing. The sense of being grounded. Contentment with what is. Instead of fear of what might be. I want to pull back from a world of marketing that tells us we are not rich enough, skinny enough, smart enough or “in” enough. Where there are only two sides… the good one and the bad one.

I long for connection with what is real and true in any moment based on how it feels to me. Does it, he/she, they or that resonate? Am I drawn in and want to know more or do I feel neutral or even resistant? What is real and true for me in the moment?

I am not saying I think everyone needs to unplug or disconnect from all the rapid-fire messaging that is around us. The constant packaging and marketing. But if you are like me and are finding it hard to stay grounded and focused on what feels aligned and truthful to you.., checking out for a bit might be worth your while.

I have found over the past month or so that without the constant inundation of news and marketing, that I am having more personal conversations. Meeting people and connecting with them in that moment without current events, trends or news being our only point of connection. It doesn’t mean the conversations never hit these topics, but I get to hear about and experience them from an individuals perspective. And I don’t know about you, but for me, in that context I don’t feel like I have to take a side or even have a perspective. I can simply hear it from them and understand that that is what feels right and true for them. At least in that moment.

So for now.., I think I will stay ‘checked out’.

With Light, Love, and Laughter
Charles

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