In Search for a Perspective
Today’s world is filled with information. There is so much information circling around everywhere we turn. We are inundated not just with information, but also on information of information — also known as individual or group perspective — we have already consumed. As a matter of fact, people build entire businesses charging for their perspective on readily available free information. Everywhere you turn you can find at your fingertips the answers to any question you have; Someone has shared their perspective on it in some shape or form!
Yet we continue to grow less and less content, less and less satisfied, less and less smart. Why is that? We go off and we accumulate knowledge through official education standards out of curiosity, out of a need to reach a certain status in life, out of fear we’ll be left behind; Whatever the reason. In addition, we are hooked to a never ending river of How To videos, books, podcasts. All these resources we can use to learn how to do, act, be, stand, talk, think, express, etc. Yet, we continue to wonder why even after all this information we have absorbed from multiple mediums, we continue to feel as lost as ever.
Gaining New Perspective or Filling a Void?
I can not tell you how many times I have found myself in the fast lane of productivity, for instance. I have been consuming this material for years. It seems like the more I dive in, the less knowledgeable I seem to feel and the more there seems to be to learn. It’s a pretty vicious circle and once you are in it it’s hard to break free. It’s hard because it all makes sense. I absorb the information and for the most part I agree with most of it. I set out to try things for yourself and then I keep finding more and more things I must explore.
It’s like vortex that takes you in and you have no choice but to give in.
If this is you, stop! Pause, sit down; Take a deep breath and ask yourself: Why do I know what I know? Why do I need to know this? Am I using this? Is it improving to my life right now?
There is a difference between gaining a new perspective and filling a void. It’s the difference between consuming information to enrich your life, move forward in your career, become a better parent, or significant other, and consuming information out of fear you may fall behind, be seen as not smart enough or important enough. The first centers you, the latter destroys you. And whether you are willing to admit this to yourself or not, you do know the answer!
Dust It All Off and Go to the Source
In the last five years of my life, I have learned to limit the information I consume at any given time. For example, if I am reading a book I make sure 1) I am addressing a specific aspect in my life by reading it, 2) I study the book. How is this book adding to my life aside from me just reading it so I can say I’m a reader? How is it enriching my life?
There was a time in my life when I would read a book and once done, put it aside. I would feel accomplished. Like I was 300+ pages smarter, more knowledgable, more resourceful. And yes, that absolutely stands true. I am not insinuating here you stop reading books! Not at all! But what I am addressing is the element of how much information consumption on the topic of personal development is too much?
For me it all started with me reading the book and it ended with me having read the book. I didn’t really apply what I had learned in my daily life in order to make reading the book serve a purpose. No. The reading was the purpose.
But after a while the whole pointless reading started to get to me. I needed more. So at some point I decided to put the brakes on all of it and simply pause. This pause happened right around the time I got pregnant after a long journey through infertility.
It’s when I realized what I needed was not a book after a book after a book to teach me how to be productive, how to be happy, how to be this or that. I simply needed to connect with what I already knew, what I already have learned as a child, as teenager, as an adult. And after all the information on personal development I have consumed over the years, I still had zero clue how to go about connecting with it all… Search for more books on how to consume what I have consumed? 😉
Meet Your Teacher
The idea behind letting our children teach us simply borne out of an observation I had while playing with my child, while parenting my child, while being in my child’s presence. My child has taught me patience, accountability, responsibility, structure, time-blocking and everything in between.
How? By simply existing in my life. Or maybe me existing in her life… Because as she came into this world she brought an uninterrupted, untamed, imaginary orbit around her being, and she is in the center of that orbit. That’s how we all come to this world. In that orbit I am external arbitrator invading it. And as she grows older there will be multiple arbitrators invading her orbit pulling and pushing her of her center.
As parents we are the first and most persisting arbitrators of our children’s’ orbits. But what if we changed that? What if we put aside all the information we have consumed that has made us feel like we know better than our children and succumb to the purity and wisdom of their existence by helping them strengthen and grow their invisible orbit instead of crushing it so we can “show them better” because they are just children and they don’t know better.
I assure you, they know so much better! If we only pause, swallow our pride, get pass our ego and let them guide us.
Everything we do, the way we are, who we are comes down to the sum of all things we are to our children. They see us. They can read us better than we can read them. And if we listen, they can teach us lessons we have forgotten, lessons we never learned, lessons that help us. And the best part is: all they ask for is a little bit of space and uninterrupted moments of our time away from the “important” stuff we need to get to.