Tag: facebook

Only one imperative

Why is it so difficult to just be yourself? I think there are two impediments to being you:

  1. We don’t know ourselves. We have spent so much time playing a role whether that be in your family or at work, we have completely lost touch who we really are.
  2. The second impediment is that society, in general, wants to categorize us by race, gender, ethnicity, profession, political party, and wealth just to name a few.

Impediment #1

We don’t know ourselves – If you are like me, you spend countless hours agonizing over what you do for a living, which means you become a role that you play for the majority of your waking hours. You become so focused on excelling at this role that your whole identity becomes wrapped up in it. Now if this role is aligned or a by-product of who you really are then you have hit the jackpot, but sadly for most of us, this just isn’t true. Instead of figuring out who we really are we just assume the role and spend the rest of our life living our life in that paradigm. Instead of pursuing our dreams we just assume the role of Doctor, Nurse, Data Scientist, Software Developer, Uber Driver, Mother, Father, Son, Daughter, or whatever. Most of our life is then spent living up to the expectations needed to fulfill that role.  It’s fucking madness and we do it day after day until we die. At some point, we realize this and become unhappy with these roles and begin looking inside ourselves for an answer.

Impediment #2

Society – In the United States, we like to think we are all born equal, with inalienable rights, to life, liberty, and happiness. Nice sentiment, but it’s mostly bullshit. Our society like the societies in most countries tries to categorize us by political affiliations like left or right, black or white, male or female, rich or poor, and so on. As people, we begin associating our identity to these groupings. I can say I am a Democrat or a Republican and as such, I believe this or that. You don’t even have to think about it just assume some group identity and you are set for life, and most people don’t think about it. Once you have been categorized you are more easily controlled and can be marketed to. Yes, you become a target audience for whatever propaganda the government or a corporation wishes to sell you. You might think I sound like some paranoid anarchist at this point, but hear me out. Look at your Instagram feed for a moment, notice how the advertisements are targeted at you based on your browsing history or Google searches. You, my friend, are a target market and Facebook or Google have already categorized you as someone who needs to see these particular ads.

The Door

What if there was a door that you could open that would help you find your true self and start living a life free from assumed roles and identities. The door is your own rational mind, your freedom of choice if you will. To begin exercising this freedom of choice you need to stop doing a few things:

  • Stop thinking of yourself as only a role – Yes, you may play roles, but don’t let those roles overtake a huge amount of your conscious mind. You are not a role, but you may perform a function related to a role, just remember you are not a fucking role.
  • Stop being categorized – People will try to categorize you as liberal or conservative, but don’t fall for that trap. Use rational judgment when it comes to any issue versus groupthink. I know it’s easier to just follow the herd and adopt their ideology, but if you make that choice you are abandoning yourself for the group. I don’t label myself as liberal or conservative and can still exist in this world. The more you affiliate yourself with these groups the less independent you become.

For me, you can’t just stop living as a role or allowing yourself to be affiliated with society’s categorization of you. If you don’t take action you will be pulled back into the Vortex or at the very least spend the rest of your life rebelling against it, and neither of those fates will help you know yourself. Finding yourself then requires you to start doing some things:

  • Spend time by yourself – Finding yourself often means that you need to be alone. This might mean you take long walks, practice yoga, read books, or try meditating. This time you spend with yourself allows you to think and also isolates you from outside influences. I started both meditating and doing yoga in the morning before work and it has had a profound influence on how I see the world, for you it might be just taking a nice long walk, listening to music, running, or whatever you can do by yourself.
  • Value your time – You can’t really become introspective and think for yourself if you spend countless hours watching YouTube, Netflix, or Hulu. The same thing applies to scrolling through Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. Let’s say you work 8 hours a day or more, then you spend the next 8 hours watching cable news, or one of the other forms of media I just mentioned. Each of these forms of media seeks to influence the way you think, and you know dam will that it does. You won’t learn anything about yourself watching all this shit, it will only detract from your goal of being yourself.

You are not a role, you are not some category, you are a unique individual that deserves to pursue things that interest you. Think for yourself, make decisions in your best interest. Do something today that will help you understand who you really are.


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Is our technology making life better?

Is our technology making life better?

You know the big thing now is the integration of your work life and personal life largely due to technology. Those of us who live our life with cell phones, tablets, chrome books, and notebook computers find ourselves connected to work much of the time. We are tethered to our devices like they are some sort of appendage, a third arm if you will. This technology allows us to work outside of the office, at our homes, on the golf course, and even when we are supposed to be on vacation.


I have been guilty of wondering where my cell phone is, so that I can be informed about what is going on. You know that sense of panic feels like when you can’t find your cell phone. I’ve even felt guilty when I failed to acknowledge someone’s birthday on Facebook, when prior to Facebook I would not have had any idea when their birthday was and probably not cared anyway. Observing other people they seem more intent on looking at their cell phone than interacting with people in person, and yes I am guilty of the same thing. So if we can acknowledge that technology has changed the way we work and the way we interact with each other, then what can we expect if we don’t recognize this shift in our world?

  1. Not Really Listening – meetings where instead of listening, our co-workers are looking at their cell phone or laptop. How can we hope to make good decisions and be productive if we are staring at our cell phone instead of paying attention to who is speaking.
  2. Social Media Relationships – instead of face to face relationships we now have friends on Facebook and Google Plus. We have followers on LinkedIn, Pinterest, and maybe our own blogs. I’m not saying this is a bad thing because these tools are a great way to keep up with what other people are doing, learn new things, and an avenue for expressing ourselves just like I am doing now. The problem is when the social media relationships are a substitute for more personal ways of communicating.
  3. Multitasking – instead of focus we are unfocused, distracted by our notifications and not concentrating on the task at hand. This isn’t even funny, as we are wasting time checking our email accounts, scanning LinkedIn, looking at Facebook, and generally not getting our work done. Multiply this by the millions of workers in our country and you have a bunch of payroll dollars being wasted. Every time you take your focus off a task you end up needing to get yourself re-focused on what you were doing, and this is a colossal waste of time.

Here are a few ways to unplug yourself:

  1. Lose your cell phone – I don’t mean really lose it, but put your cell phone in your bedroom or office, and set it to vibrate, or if you are really bold turn it off.
  2. When you go to a meeting leave your cell phone at your desk, don’t take it with you to the conference room or wherever you are meeting. It is rude to be looking at your phone or reading emails on your laptop during a meeting.
  3. When you go on vacation, don’t take your laptop or tablet, and leave your cell phone in the room. Tell people to call the hotel/resort if they there is an emergency.
  4. Only look at social media sites when you are on break.
  5. Stop checking your email every 15 minutes. If someone sends you an email they can wait for a response; tell them to call you if it is urgent.
  6. When you are with your family or friends put your phone away, or at least in your pocket or purse.

If you can’t do at least half of the things I mentioned above then you will forever be controlled by technology, and while you may consider yourself productive you are fooling no one. I would love to hear how you unplug?