MC's Whispers

Whispering Silences

Archive for the tag “reality”

The vicious circles we feed

https://c.pxhere.com/photos/e4/0b/alone_walking_night_people_city_street_lonely_stranger-731127.jpg!d

There is a place in the heart of the city where people go to disappear. It’s a place you often pass by on your daily route to work, shopping or whatever else you choose to spend you time, money and energy on. But you don’t realise they are there. You pretend not to see them. Not to know that these neighbourhoods are different.

We fear different. We oppose and react to whatever we don’t understand.

We don’t even try to change things. We simply acknowledge that they are not how they should.

And so, we continue our lives, and more people simply disappear out of theirs.

Because it is not easy to actually live. To have a life that fulfils you and completes you. People are used to existing. And documenting their existence to prove to others that they are doing things worthwhile. In reality, trying to convince themselves that they matter.

We close our eyes to those who need help. Because we don’t want to assume the responsibility of change.

And then we protest that nothing ever changes or improves. Like a vicious circle we ourselves feed.

The difficulties of detachment

The reality is this: even when on holiday, on a leave, on a short getaway, we feel the need to be connected with the world digitally. We fear we’ll miss out otherwise. That something life-shattering will occur and we won’t know about it and we’ll be the only ones feeling we’ve been living under a rock simply because we don’t know of the latest trending topics.

So we spend our entire lives – without break – constantly attached to a digital world we are paradoxically trying to escape from.

We can’t turn it all off and disappear, although we know that would be the ideal.

We are unable to disengage, to discharge from the social media stress because we’re constantly thinking of our next post, our reaction to someone else’s post and so forth.

We’re caught up in an unhealthy antagonism of who’s having the most fun in the better place, and we waste time like this instead of actually having that fun and enjoying ourselves with the people physically next to us.

We find it almost impossible to distract our minds, to unplug from it all and simply relax. It’s as if we can’t not do anything. By now, due to the radical rhythms in which we live our lives, something still and tranquil is considered by our systems as abnormal. As something we are almost physically incapable of doing.

We are so dependent on our devices, we cannot enjoy the reality of doing things without flaunting them.

And in the end, we forget to chase our dreams because we’re busy chasing after the acceptance of people we hardly even know. For no apparent or useful reason.

It’s good to – at least try – to detach from it all for a while. To remember what it was like without the intrusion of social media in our lives. When everything – even our relationships – were so much simpler. And we weren’t all so constantly agitated and stressed that we are perpetually on the verge of a burnout.

The most important medicine

https://static01.nyt.com/images/2018/12/30/books/review/30Sutherland/30Sutherland-articleLarge.jpg?quality=75&auto=webp&disable=upscale

They told him he would be foolish to abandon everything he had spent his whole life creating. He had a successful legal office and had a good reputation among his peers.

But when his wife got sick, he didn’t consider it at all. For him it was obvious that his place was by her side. Always and at all costs. It was what they had vowed to each other so many years ago.

He didn’t see it as making sacrifices. He saw it as standing by and supporting the person he loved.

He didn’t care that he spent his whole life being next to her, even when she stopped remembering him. He continued his efforts to remind her of his love for her every day and refused to stop trying or to not be there, for her. So that she would feel safe and cared for.

He believed with all his heart that when you love someone you dedicate to them a part of your life, your time and your interest.

For him being with the person he loved and shared his life with was much more important that work, money and material goods.

Love is sometimes the most important medicine.

A commercial of truth

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There are some commercials that are so mesmerising, you get lost in them and you are left wondering what on earth that mind-blowing scene had to do with the product it advertises. That is how good it is. Because it makes everyone discuss it, becoming viral in record-breaking time, even if no-one even knows what the product does. But it has achieved the greatest marketing target of all: it is being talked about.

One such commercial is the Spanish 2018 Ruavieja commercial “Tenemos que vernos mas” (We have to see more of each other).

It makes you really stop for a minute or two and think.

Because it makes you realise that we don’t have all that time we think we do.

It talks about how we all consider our loved ones our priority, yet we spend so much time apart and on screens instead that we don’t see so much of each other.

We are programmed to avoid thinking about how long we’ve got left to live, so we think that we will always have the chance to do the things that really make us happy.

It makes you realise how much time we actually waste doing things that don’t really make us happy.

Using a calculation and data from the National Institute of Statistics, an algorithm was created to find out how much time we have left to spend with our loved ones given our habits, age and routine. But would you really want to know this truth? Wouldn’t you rather simply be made aware of it and do something about it? To change the fact that we spend so much time in a virtual world rather than in the real one?

The commercial serves as a wake-up call. A reminder that the things that truly matter are not things; they are the people who are with you, the emotions you feel around them and the experiences you share with them.

Life teaches us to make good use of time, while time teaches us the value of time”.

Deciphering obscure objects

https://www.google.gr/url?sa=i&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=imgres&cd=&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=2ahUKEwjn8a_wuPfdAhXD3KQKHR9mAx8QjRx6BAgBEAU&url=http%3A%2F%2Folhocurioso2015.blogspot.com%2F2015%2F10%2Fcomo-se-forma-neblina.html&psig=AOvVaw0xWhJTnB9Okhc0pQC7eV19&ust=1539108693186256Look at this. Look at it closely. What do you think it is?”

She showed him a picture of an object that was too unclear to decipher. It was oblong with sharp edges. It could be anything really. His mind began to race. The young boy had millions of images in his head as to what that object may be. They were bombarding him like fighter plane missiles.

Here’s the catch,” his teacher told him. “You only have two guesses. So make them count”.

The boy became even more agitated. Only two. The margin of error was too tight.

The object could be anything. How could he make sure he found the right answer?

In his head, he was putting together a jigsaw – placing his imaginary items onto the unknown object and assessing how far it matched.

It was a trial of imagination, of expectation, of prediction.

The task was to understand that very often in life, we imagine one thing, we expect another, we make it up in our heads to be that which we think it is, and in the end we end up disappointed when we find out it is something extremely different.

In the end we get hurt from our own expectations, when all we need to do is train ourselves to expect the lowest, even from the places and people we though the highest of.

The unbearable lightness of unfairness

http://elkespage.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/comparing-fish-bowls.pngIn every life we have some trouble, when you worry you make it double,” sang Bob Marley (originally sung by Bobby McFerrin), prompting us to “don’t worry, be happy”.  We hear it a thousand times from a million different places: we need to stop stressing over everything so much and enjoy life as it is. But what is most difficult to grasp is the way to quickly overcome adversities. Especially when they point out every so often how unfair life is.

With the advancement of social media to the extent when at every second during the day anyone can flaunt where they are and what they’re (not) doing, this feeling is enhanced to the utmost. Especially when you see people going on trips around the world supposedly for business or some other professional “duty”, yet are acting as if they have grasped the opportunity to enhance their tourism skills on company expenses. And there are many examples. We see them everyday. From our “representative” politicians to TV personas, actors, right down to friends and colleagues.

So what do you do in such cases? When the reality of injustice smacks you in the face? Well, most people just prompt you to live out your misery for a while; let it take you over and then quietly let it fade away as you realise how much you’ve accomplished in your life and how much more you can do. They will all repeat to you that “no-one said life would be easy (or fair); they just promised it would be worth it”. So just let it be, pick up your pieces and move on. Things will turn around and you’ll get what you need eventually. What matters most is that you don’t give up.

“People are always complaining that life’s not fair, but that simply isn’t true. Life is extraordinarily fair. It’s just not centred on you” – Lynn Marie Sager

Attention-seekers and their shadows

http://s2.thingpic.com/images/W4/9zPkuowr4cj82ztjQhJ4LM6L.jpegPeople who shine from within don’t need the spotlight. Remember that the next time you see someone trying to draw all the attention onto themselves”.

Grandma Eve always knew what to say. She had a special way of consoling Tina. She knew something was wrong and could even identify what it was without the latter saying a word.

This time it had to do with certain friends that turned out to have been using her in order to become more popular. School was always a difficult place for someone who cared too much and who had a different way of thinking than that of the masses.

To Tina, such people may gain attention but they lose respect. That’s what Grandma Eve pointed out. Even Charles Bukowski had said it: “Beware of those who seek constant crowds; they are nothing alone”.

Attention-seekers are like narcissists. They constantly seek to be the centre of everything even when they have nothing noteworthy to say or show. They are the ones who constantly take selfies, post online, and speak the loudest when in a crowd. They are the ones who don’t understand how (or why) the best parts of life are the ones that aren’t made public. Why you don’t need to be constantly talked about in order to be someone. Or why what matters most is what you make of yourself, how you cultivate your own mind and decide to do something purposeful with your time.

Grandma Eve wrapped her arms around Tina and offered her a freshly baked cookie. Hugs and sweets always had a way of making anyone feel better.

Don’t let attention-seekers bring you down. It’s not that you are not worthy of attention. It’s that you know better how to draw it for the right reasons at the proper time. Just remember that they are focusing the spotlight on themselves because they are trying to fill the gaps inside them. If they were happy with who they are, they wouldn’t need the validation of their worth from others. Always be proud of what you achieve. No matter what anyone else thinks. And never feel ashamed that you are in the shadows at times. It is only further proof that you have light around you”.

 

Also part of Daily Prompt: Narcissism

Blank pages

https://i.pinimg.com/originals/ba/28/60/ba2860f4ea87cf3aae1e15aab7ffb8a8.jpgWriters know it best that it is always difficult to face a brand new blank page. It is imbued with so much potential that it is sometimes frightening. Because you fear you may not live up to the expectation that lies within that blank page. You fear what you will write will not be good enough. But you will never know unless you try. Unless you write that first word and let everything else just flow onto the page.

Just like that, in life too, we need to be bold enough to take risks, to make new decisions, to change things. We will never be able to reach our true potential if we are too afraid to change even the slightest in our routines, to make new opportunities a reality. It is only when we exit our comfort zones that great things will come. And we will realise what we are truly capable of.

Just hours away from a new year, perhaps this is the time for reflection – of how the 365 days that passed were filled with moments of happiness, laughter, love, excitement, new experiences, but also of remorse, sadness, of wanting to painfully creep under something and disappear. This is the time to fill ourselves with determination and hope to make the New Year the best one yet. To make it the one that will improve our lives and of those around us. To eliminate as much as possible those bad moments that overshadow all the good and be decisive enough to make those moments to come ones branded only by smiles, laughter and happiness.

Make this start one worthy of who you are and the goodness that lies within you.

Happy New Year everyone!

 

Also part of Daily Prompt: Almost

Push the button

petergriffin - do not push buttonLife can change in an instant. It is at those moments you realise how short time is. How little you spend truly appreciating things that are important, and actually living. It is in those instants that you suddenly awake at the thought that you spend too many moments overthinking and worrying about things that won’t matter later on.

An instant is all it takes for the world to change.

In an age where technology has evolved to the extent that it connects people across countries, continents, oceans, time zones with just a click of a button, anything is possible. At any moment. In just an instant.

In our daily lives we are constantly pushing buttons. Some are in the form of switches, like the one you press to turn the light on or off. Some buttons start our cars, open doors, turn on the cooker / boiler, launch our computers/ tablets / phones. Things that we nowadays take for granted and happen automatically.

But what happens if we push the wrong button? If suddenly – in an instant – we mistakenly erase important data that we can’t recover? It is in that instant that time freezes. It is then that we realise how much power a simple button has, and how much we have entered an automated mode that we often do things – press buttons – without really considering the consequences.

We live life on full speed and when things get a bit out of hand we panic, we feel lost and desperate. It is not about the speed with which we do things. It’s about the buttons we push and the impact they will have on our lives. Even if it is just one button. The implications may be huge. Just think that a bomb – any type of – can explode at the simple push of one button.

When forgiveness is a privilege

https://static1.squarespace.com/static/51a04613e4b0007c06d7c81a/t/57a0f0f8197aea59d470b83f/1470165244816/There is a man on the street, sitting at the same spot on the pavement each day with almost the same clothes, clean and ironed, and a small bag on his side. He sits there watching people pass him by. He holds a sign that reads, “Please forgive me. I’m hungry”. He stays there all day. Every day.

There are others too. They get on buses and trains asking to be forgiven for the intrusion. Asking not to be seen as beggars. Asking for the understanding that their need to survive is greater than their own dignity. They sometimes sell something: a pen, a notebook, a pack of handkerchiefs; solely for the purpose of giving something back in exchange for any money they would receive from anyone who pities them.

Some even have a dog with them. One that sits next to them trembling in the cold, wagging its tail miserably once someone comes a little closer in the hope that they will throw something edible at it. One whose eyes have lost that glow it has as a puppy when it enters the world full of excitement.

Sorrow has many faces. So does despair.

People are brought to the brink of their tolerance, of their ability to survive, that they decide to do what they perhaps vowed never to do: to ask strangers for help.

But they do so without abandoning their dignity. They sometimes are stronger than us, because they acknowledge their inability, the fact that they have nothing to lose because they have already lost it all. They are asking for forgiveness from a world that has cast them aside. They are demonstrating to the society we live in that it has no dignity, no empathy, no respect, if it ignores them and hopes this problem will solve itself.

Forgiveness, they say, is an attribute of the strong.

Yet, instead of requesting our forgiveness, we should be the ones apologising to these people. For disappointing them, for letting them down, for allowing them to see only the ruthless and dark side of life.

Anyone with even the slightest sense of emotion feels ashamed when passing by these people. Because we have food, warm clothes and a roof to go back to. Contrary to them, we still are part of this society, no matter how much we blame it for all the difficulties we have to face. But they have something we lack: the acknowledgement that the reality we live in is fragile. Yet, they are the ones who can better manage happiness and fortune when it comes to them. Because we take these things for granted. And do not appreciate them enough.

Everyone you meet has something they fear, something they love, something they lost, something they are missing, and something they need. It is in the silent ones that you acknowledge everything you have and realise what it is you are missing.

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