Doesn’t it seem like there is more going, in more places, and faster? That’s how it seems to me. Sometimes my brain feels like the newsfeed on Facebook – there’s a big long stream of seemingly totally unrelated information from hundreds of sources that is going pretty much constantly. My mind wants to sort information and to ascribe both meaning and a rating to it. Simple brain has both a “like” and “dislike” button, immediately applied. Katie is competing in Cross-Fit finals: Like. Michelle lost her job: dislike.
The sea of information from all sources (online, NPR in the car, talking to friends in person, talking on the phone, interacting with the checkout guy at Trader Joes) then mushes with the reception tower (I think of mind as the receiver, body/brain as the tower) and its current state. So when I’m hungry, angry, lonely or tired (HALT!) or in some hormonal soup (including adrenaline, one of America’s favorite drug addictions) that gets added to the mix. Like how when you fall in love everything, just everything seems beautiful and perfect and silly. That.
Lately I feel like someone turned up the volume, the speed, and we went from network TV to some crazy cable thing with one million channels and that it all happened at once. LOTS of information, faster!
On Facebook I can control the number of sources (currently 302). Then I can filter them further (the people I don’t want to ‘unfriend’ but whose posts are cluttering things or annoying me; all games – I really really really don’t care about your Farmville or Mafia Wars). When something or someone gets too tedious – poof! they’re gone. I can gate the frequency – take a day or two off and don’t try to catch up (something info junkie me has never done, but it CAN be done).
The Germans have a word I love “zeitgeist” – the temper of the times. As an aside, this is a major reason why I love astrology, because that it one of its main purposes – to capture and name the zeitgeist with planetary symbols representing different modes of energy.
I could write another post on the difference between brain and mind – a difference I would not purport to understand but which fascinates me (and why are people who study consciousness so crazy brilliant – where’s the “Consciousness for Dummies” book – I need that!).
But it seems like maybe our millennium old reception towers (our body and brain) might not have been built with this broadcasting (and narrow-casting, too) paradigm in mind.
So we (me, at least – you?) careen through our days, slaloming between LIKE! and DISLIKE! and YAWN!, trying both at conscious and unconscious levels to make sense of it all.
This was particularly apparent to me yesterday.
- 3 job interviews falling into my lap – LIKE!
- Argentina approves gay marriage – LIKE!
- My friend Michelle being summarily, callously, and CRUELLY let go by her we-could-give-a-shit employer (for whom I’m currently working on contract) as her husband awaits a lung transplant and after months of harrowing issues with his health (nice move corporate America – kind and sensitive of you) – WAY MORE THAN DISLIKE!
- My friend Ellen telling me her longtime partner Allen got laid off and she hasn’t been working and they both have health issues and he has debt – DISLIKE!
- My colleague got the Google map API to work in SharePoint on the site we’re building and it looks cool – LIKE!
- Playing with “my boys” – my 7 year old friend Thomas and his 5 year old brother Michael and getting to connect with their mama, my beloved friend Jennifer – LIKE!
- Financial reform bill passes – LIKE!
I’ve noticed that I’ve been sleeping a bit more lately. For a long time I let my body (not clocks) drive the sleep process – go to bed when tired, get up when done sleeping. It has pretty consistently said 6.5 – 7 hours sleep is fine for me, thanks. I don’t know if it’s the big (huge to me) changes I’m making in my food/nutrition/supplements and/or this increased input in life, but one of the ways I think the receiving tower is handling “stack overflow at Diane Scholten brain” is to just turn off the receptors longer (i.e., sleep a bit more).
What do you think – faster, more, more chaotic? How does YOUR receiving tower sort/cope with/analyze the jammed airwaves?