Loud Noises

I’m so sick of being yelled at. The worst part about it is that there’s no respite or relief from it. Advertising is in every single direction we turn our eyes and ears, and it’s only getting louder. With more competition for our increasingly limited attention spans, advertising companies seem to have done away with the clever and would prefer to place themselves in front of us and scream noise at us.

I had a realisation recently about just how much this advertising was affecting my psyche. I had gotten so used to radio and TV ads just being a regular part of life, that I had forgotten they can quite simply be turned off. Turning it off consciously offers an almost immediate cognitive pressure release to our minds. I have physically felt that release from my cranium after deciding that the latest “warehouse closing down sale” was not critical information.

In a world where we rely on advertising revenue to stimulate many parts of our economy (I mean it basically keeps our radio stations in work, and our professional sports accessible to us) we have to remember our sanity. We have to remember that it’s okay to turn off some of these overwhelming senses, and be comfortable with the silence again.

When the loud noises get too much, take away their power. For you own sake.

Guise.

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Writing Our Own Paragraphs

Since the earliest of ages I’ve called myself a name. Something unique, and akin to a dying art in this modern Artificially Intelligent world. I’ve brandished myself with this word to separate from the crowd, to feel unique, to feel talented and to surprise others. That word is writer.

It’s a strange sort of behaviour. As writers, we self-indulgently talk about ourselves as if we are some special breed that experience life differently and more vividly and more intensely than anyone else, but the reality is that we are just another product of existence. We have been given words which allow us to speak these experiences, in the same way a musician or an artist has been bestowed in their own medium.

Looking at it through a wider scope, I guess this isn’t a trait of creative-types only. In all walks of life, people are writing their own paragraphs, in their words and actions, as to how they fit in this existence.

In a world where purpose and longevity are two innately difficult concepts to keep aligned, each day we change, or are perceived to change, in minuscule or major manners. But what we often forget to appreciate, is the bearing that we ourselves can have on the experience.

Guise.

Fear of Loss and Life

My greatest fear in life is losing what I love, from my partner, my family, my friends, my mind, to even my life. For this reason, (perhaps even prior to this fear fully developing) I’ve learned to cherish what it is I have, to appreciate the people in my life and how fortunate I am to be in the world that I live in.

I think the greatest factor to this fear, is the lack of control I have in stopping loss. Death is inevitable and people do/say/believe things that we do not agree with. In all honesty, I am not what you would typically consider a control freak. Flexibility, open-mindedness, and empowerment of others are some of the traits that I am most proud of, but this fear and subsequent lack of control in avoiding this fear becoming reality comes from the realisation that life changes in an instant. It is devastating and destabilising. It forces us to adapt when all we want to do is stagnate.

If we look at one of the defining flaws to result from this fear, I now live a life which is as risk averse as possible. Decision making is tiresome, and opportunities become limited, all because of a fear that I may set in motion a ripple which inevitably causes me loss. And then I’ll only have myself to blame for ruining what I had.

Considering how short life is, as I really appreciate with ever-passing day, I want to make a committed effort to forgoing the fear, and remove risk (to a fair degree) from my regular decision making, and to just live.

I know that there is plenty to experience and learn when I let it go, now it’s a matter of making it more of a reality.

Guise.

Grateful Sunday

Today calls for an appreciation post. You know how we’ve spoken about the little things in life, and stopping to truly experience the life around us, well this is me doing that for the first time in a while.

I consider myself to be a very lucky person for a lot of reasons. I have social privilege; my health, and that of my loved ones, is fine; more support systems than one person could ever need; comfortable job; soulmate by my side, and more to list than in a single paragraph. I appreciate all of this and more, because I know that I’ve got it good.

Let’s just say, I’m not the easiest personality. I’m opinionated, hot and cold socially, loud and confident in myself, and often stubborn, but despite this, my family, friends, and partner all keep me close, keep me welcome, and embrace me for me. These can be difficult traits to be around, and it’s for that reason that I constantly make a conscious effort to reign that in, but knowing that I’m understood and loved is something I’m extremely lucky and grateful for.

So to my family who have helped to shape me to who I am, my friends who have kept us all together for a long time, and to the love of my life… Thank You.

Guise.

Up for Discussion

For many of us, the art of discussion, of debate and disagreement, exists no more. Done away with by the ongoing discourse of being offensive to somebody’s ears. In an age where we’ve made these efforts to protect disadvantaged members of society, we have in turn created a pseudo-culture where offense brings with it a full stop on your conversation.

In this bubble wrapped society, even the most insignificant choices of words are enough to be brandish offensive. Your image is now of someone who is out to negatively impact everyone else.

What we’ve done is warped an effort which was intently good, and created a weapon in the disarming of conversations we now choose to be a part of. So much of the conversation rests now on symantics, and we often overlook the content.

The reason this problem is so important to us, is because in a world where we are never sure which news sources are on the straight, whether we are being lied to, or even with suspicions that the masses are being mind numbed for suppression, discussion and disagreement are our way to activate the truth finding parts of our brain. It is the sharing or discussion of ideas in order to learn, to grow, and to change.

Instead, we’re now too busy being offended to have a discussion, to willingly closing our minds off for fear of being wrong. As a collective, we must stop our fixation on winning the argument, and open ourself up to what somebody else is actually saying.

Who knows, maybe I’m just rambling for the sake of rambling, maybe I’ve proven a home truth. Prove to me otherwise.

Guise.

A Ripple from Before

One of the greatest opportunities I have ever been afforded, was the very first step in my career. I was yet to graduate from Uni, with no experience in my field, voluntary or otherwise, and I had applied for a head office job as a customer service attendant.

What I thought I had was zero to none in chances of breaking through, not in the job I had applied for anyway. What I was given was a chance. A chance to be out of my depth and to learn quickly or sink. It was a job that should have been 2 or 3 years too senior for me. I felt like I had skipped the queue.

Recently, I found myself thinking about this. I mean, I regularly look back on my career, but I had never truly took the time to appreciate that it someone stuck their neck out, and rolled the dice. Somebody said I was worth the risk.

Which led me to this week, when I did something I should have done a long time ago. I thanked that person. You see, for a matter of circumstances, I only ever worked for that risk taker for a period of weeks. And then they weren’t there, not for the rest of my time with that company.

During my reflection, it occurred to me that often in life, we don’t get the chance to look back on someone else’s actions which have affected us so much, and get the chance to approach them so much later. So I felt obliged to say my piece and recognise the ripple they have had in my life.

It was somewhat cathartic. Almost laying to rest that part of my life, once and for all. Who knows whether I’ll have that chance ever again. But I hope that my message has just as strong an effect on them, as they did on me.

Guise.

Connected

For someone who can often openly describe himself as happily anti-social, it makes for the perfect foil when I find myself the loudest in the room, or leading a training session, or even craving social interaction.

At the same time, I tire of social settings as quickly as I adjust to them, when I thrust myself (or am thrust) into them.

For a long time, I felt bad wanting to be the first to leave, or wanting to leave “just when the parties getting started”, or wanting to eat my lunch alone, in a solitary crevice of the office. But it’s a recent area of change for me, the comfort in doing me. The comfort in knowing myself better than I ever have, and the strength to do what makes me happy and comfortable. Not in any sort of selfish way, by all means, if the occasion calls for it, I’ll suck it up, throw myself back into the midst of it all, and do what’s best in the situation.

So I guess the point of this musing is small and simple, and that is that it’s okay to not be what everybody wants you to be all of the time, but there is definitely value in allowing yourself to be in unfamiliar, uncomfortable, or just irregular situations. Sometimes it’s where we have the most fun. But we can do it with balance, knowing our limits, and being flexible.

Guise.