As our lives have become more and more dependent on electronic devices, many of us can find ourselves feeling unfulfilled at the end of the day. It is as if the life we lived was entirely through the little 5 or 6-inch screen on our phones.
Whether you were spending all day scrolling through Instagram, or perusing Reddit, or trying to get some Fair Go bonus codes, or maybe just doing literally nothing yet still on an electronic device, you can feel pretty sad by the end of the day. It just doesn’t feel like this is how humans were meant to live!
And, that is very true! Electronic devices are the cause of frankly quite a lot of what is wrong with our lives. Now, don’t get me wrong, technology is a wonderful thing. The number of lives that have been saved and the power of the internet is just too great to pass up.
But this does not mean that our lives were meant to be run by social media, and what Netflix show we are bingeing. In fact, studies show that spending so much time on cell phones, computers, and other electronic devices has permanently affected our attention spans. Perhaps even irreparably so!
Especially with the advent of having to spend so much more time on a computer due to the pandemic to either work or go to school, I find myself having real trouble with eye strain and dryness. This is no doubt a problem for many people, not just myself.
But how can we combat this extreme misfortune? The simple fact is that technology is just too important to give up altogether. So what can we do to make our lives more rooted in the material plane, rather than the digital one?
Well, there are actually plenty of great activities you can do that don’t require electricity or even a lot of money! Here I will give you 5 examples, but don’t be fooled! There are plenty more if you just spend a little time thinking about it! (1)
Reading is an oldie but it is certainly a goodie. Reading is just a wonderful experience. The ability to travel to another world, or be invested in a story is just great. It is actually just the “TV” of before there was “TV”.
Now reading does have some issues with it. For instance, you can still have trouble with eye strain as you are staring at pages for a long period of time. So, like a computer or phone, you are probably going to want to follow the rule of 20.
The rule of 20 of course stating that every 20 minutes, you should look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds. This will cause you to have to change the focus of your eyes and can alleviate eye strain. It will also help if you make sure you blink enough to keep your eyes from drying.
Now that we have gotten the negative out of the way, what makes books so great compared to other forms of media? Well, the first thing is that you have to use the words and make the world with your own imagination!
This is great as it allows you to form the world in your head as you see it. Characters can look like how you imagine them, and the world can be as epic or realistic looking as you’d like.
For instance, in a fantasy novel, you could imagine things in different ways. When it says that someone had a massive sword, you could either imagine it has a humongous clever the size of a tree, or something more practical like a claymore.
The limits are truly just your imagination! And this is what lacks in modern forms of media. The world is made for you already. You cannot shape the world using the author’s description to how you would like it. Someone else has already made the world how they see it.
This isn’t to say that that is always a bad thing. If there is a writer or producer that wants to share a world as he has shaped and created it, then that’s great! Sometimes having a premade world to view can be just as tantalizing, or perhaps more so, than the one you imagine yourself.
Something I think far too many people don’t do nowadays is making a connection to nature. And I’m talking about a real connection. Feeling like you are a part of it. Truly realizing you are just one of many things that all live in some kind of magical harmony on this planet.
So, although I know many people like to go to parks and go on hikes, there is an exercise I think many people could get a lot out of to truly appreciate the world around them. It can make them feel a part of the Earth, rather than just something on it.
Okay, so what is this exercise? Well, the first thing you are going to want to do is to try and find a natural place away from the noise and bustle of humankind. A place where you can’t hear cars honking or trucks downshifting on the highway.
Then, find a nice and comfortable place to either sit, or lie down, or whatever you would enjoy most. Next, you should close your eyes, and open your ears.
The point of this is to listen. To really and truly listen to the world around you. Paint a picture with the sounds you hear. Try and know your surroundings based just on them.
Hear the sound of the wind gently rustling the leaves on the trees, and the grass at your feet. Hear the insects buzz around, and birds sing gently to each other. Hear the trickle of a stream and the drips of dew falling onto bushes from the canopy.
Hear your breathing and your heartbeat. Truly feel the nature around you. Feel it like you are a part of it. You are one single organism. More like an organ in a larger creature than separate entities.
I find it is even better if you bring someone with you. Someone you really care about. Perhaps a really close friend or a partner. Hear their breath too. It can be a truly wonderful experience that is hard to convey with words.
Everybody’s house is bound to get messy from time to time. Whether it is your fault, or a messy roommate’s, or a child’s, it is just a fact of life. Cleaning up might feel like a chore, which it is, but it is also a really fulfilling feeling when you finish.
I find that simply cleaning up my messy room, can make me go from feeling like a lazy slob to a productive civil human again. It is a little like how a shave or haircut can make you feel like a brand new person.
It is not just the act itself however that can affect your mood positively. Living in a clean and neat environment can be a huge mood booster. I find it helps me feel much less claustrophobic, and more like I’m living somewhere a human was meant to live.
Sometimes people just need a break from everything. World? Leave me alone! That is perfectly okay. Sometimes you need a break. Especially if you have been under a lot of stress, or are prone to problems with anxiety.
So, what are some great ways you can just chill? Well, there are many, but a lot many people would think of involves some sort of electronic device. Whether it be watching TV or even listening to music, they both require the use of a screen at some point. That is unless you listen to the radio.
But what is a great way to relax without a screen? One of the best ways I know of is a nice hot bath. Or maybe cool water if you live in a hot climate. But either way, it truly is a great way to unwind.
The water is like a protective shield, and there is just something very comforting about it. And the nice clean smells of bubble bath or any other accouterments that you bring with you are a nice bonus,
Heck, light up some nice scented candles, throw in a bath bomb, bring a glass of wine, and have at it! It can really help you unwind. It’s just you and the bath. That may be enough. At least for a little while.
Another nice way to relax is meditation. It can also help you relieve stress if there have been things you have been dwelling on. Meditation allows you to have some time to reflect on yourself and maybe find some inner peace.
Or maybe you just simply need to sit down on a nice lawn chair and bask in some sun! Relaxing is relaxing! Maybe grab a cold one and have a nice time. Shades and a good boy doggy are optional, but recommended!
The last activity I will recommend is simply sitting down, or walking, with someone you really care about and just chatting. Build that connection and simply enjoy yourself.
It doesn’t even really matter what you talk about. Don’t think all of your conversations have to be deep and meaningful! Sometimes it’s nice to just goof around and joke around with someone you really like.
Relationships are some of the most important and valued things in our lives. If someone’s house is burning down, nobody is screaming at the firefighters to save their PC if their little sister is still in the building.
People are just simply the things we value most. They are the things that are impossible to replace. Even if you can find someone like that person, they still aren’t that person. You cannot replace somebody, only find someone else.
So, it is worthwhile to spend time with those people we value most. There are many distractions in life. You don’t want to find yourself realizing too late that you never really spent true, beautiful, quality time with your loved ones.
It’s best to get a jump on it while you still have time. So, maybe you should put the controller, or mouse, or cell phone, or whatever else down, and have a nice talk with that someone you care about. (2)