It’s hard developing your own identity, writing your own story, when others are too busy throwing theirs on top of you. This is mainly why I feel for kids today, they don’t even have time to play in their imagination, where you would find me every single day of my life. It’s hard seeing kids not be able to today, for many reasons. I’d rather not touch on the politics of today, because all of its tenets are poisoned. But a big source of this new inability to create your own life inside of your own head is that, the internet makes it possible for it to just not live within you. This is what, I think, scares me most about how I see people use the internet today, particularly kids. It’s so easily done, and so easily spends so many hours. Naturally when your young you have many many hours. But these hours are paramount for our brains growth emotional maturity and the interconnectedness of our neurons. The way we are using the internet reenforces negative psychological reactions and dangerous behaviors thus almost creating a mote between yourself and the outside world. This is where most people find themselves right now, particularly kids, out there in the void. Emotional, angry, confused, hypersensitive, hyperactive, or the opposite of those, depressed, detached, disillusioned. You get the idea. The point I’m miserably trying to make is that, we have big problems in our lives and in this country with the way our phones are being used to dictate to us what we want instead of us craving or having an appetite a dream an idea a thought, etc, that sparks the action. Right now we live on a land where people are acting without much thought at all, a dangerous, actually quite treacherous place to be as a free society. Developing a sense of self, creating your identity is impossible in the given conditions. You’ll always be told what to think, what to buy, where to shop, how to get there-you get the idea. The mechanism of free thought, the fruits of the beautiful freedoms of America, are drowning in this new sea of noise.
For us to survive we must find the calm.
Calm from the projections of others onto us as well, and this is not easy. Human nature is protective, our parents do not want us to dream and to be disappointed. They want stability, fundamentals, you get the picture. That’s good, that’s their job. That’s their love. Our love for ourself comes in when we appraise wether or not that love is sufficient for us in the long term, or if we need something more, or different, and how do we attain such. All of this is because of free thought and a conviction to living a better life. You define what that means, nobody else does. The internet and people in your past or people who you meet try, their hardest sometimes, at making you do what they want you to do. This is a form of contempt. Whoever is attempting to coerce you doesn’t know themselves enough to see what they want for you is actually what you want, not making you do what they want. Making this distinction is critical, and takes time. Sometimes people trying to coerce you into doing what you’d rather not do are doing so for good reason and in good spirit coming from a good place, at which point you as an individual must account for each of its elements.
There is no manual for life. For parenting. No turn by turn directions. No Yelp review for job interviews. You must have a sense of self and an ability to process new free flowing information without the need to use your phone as a filter. You must have the ability to take criticism and have the EQ to know where that comes from. If you want to succeed.
So first, You must heal.
Because you cannot do any of these things without first healing the pain that is your prism through which you see all of life’s interactions. It is holding you back. Because it holds us all back if we don’t iron it out. And as a country, this longing for identity comes from the lack of information and lack of education and lack of curiosity. We can heal those ourselves with just good directed thought and curiosity. But our relation to our phone, something social media companies banning americas first corrupt strongman highlighting what can happen when it’s overly relied upon weaponized and used politically in the worst of ways, must change. These are not prisms of your pain or affirmations or self aggrandizement tools.
They are cell phones.
And yes, they do a lot.
But that doesn’t mean they have to run our lives and be our emotional binky. It is a bad psychological practice. We have to be grounded. Grounded in our facts, emotions, thoughts, words, actions, and all the rest. That’s not what life is like right now in the United States of America. That’s not what life is in some other parts of the world either. But it’s affecting us in such a profound and deeply unsettling way because of the deep rooted freedoms and freedoms of expression we have in this country, quite simple other places do not. Culturally socially, you are literally free to do whatever you so choose here. While England is ‘free’, you’re born with a last name that holds your fortunes, in Russia your perpetually held down by your government, in China your existence is capped monitored and in servitude, in parts of the Middle East if you do not have certain genitalia you cannot operate a machine. Never mind what you can get in trouble for, for searching on your computer or talking about something in a coffee shop in most places around the world. This world, freedom, true freedom of thought and expression, comes scarcely. Even we struggle with it. And We as Americans have always taken our freedoms for granted, and nows no different. Its just what is now, is being hijacked and weaponized to make us turn against not only ourselves but each other. Making all sorts of people all kinds of money while making us all sorts of confused angry and wasting a whole hell of a lot of time. Creating your own identity starts with the rejection of anyone’s else’s projection. Including the realms of the internet we don’t even know. Start spending time in quiet deliberate thought. Start writing a sentence every day about something that happened in your day that you liked, outside of you. Maybe you saw someone do something for someone, maybe something made you laugh, maybe you saw a sunrise. But take the time, and write one sentence every day. Check back in a month, I’ll bet you’ll feel a whole lot different. And that’s what I mean by the noise of today, we do not have to allow the noise of our new world to tarnish the beauties of life that have always been with us. We can use these tools to maximize these beauties, to share our stories and to connect with a greater world outside of me.