People want expect things to be readily available at all times. If it isn’t, we’ll just go to the “innovative” competitor who DOES have it accessible to us.
This Starbucks mug, for instance, is a great example. I had this epiphany of how attached and dependent we all are on efficiencies when I was at the counter and saw this mug. At first I thought that this travel mug was ridiculous, but now I think it’s absolutely genius. Have you ever been on the run and thought “OMG, I need coffee!”, but didn’t have the time to get any? How about being too tired at work to keep your eyes open? Have you ever woken up in the morning on a Saturday eager to get that pot of coffee going, only to realize that you’re out of coffee beans? Don’t Panic! You have that coffee mug with the packets of high-quality instant coffee strategically enclosed within it. Phew, that was a near disaster. Luckily you planned ahead and bought that $16.95 mug and the accompanying $6.00 of Starbucks “Via” packets of high-quality instant coffee!
We WILL pay for convenience, and we’ll pay a lot. We pay upwards of $1,000 for a computer that we can carry in our pockets (smart phone). My Blackberry Bold was $450, which is only because I was still on my AT&T 2 year plan and couldn’t get the discount, but I’ll tell you that it is worth every penny to me anyway. I’m on the go most of the day, and it allows me to stay connected to everyone and everything at all times (unless I’m in the middle of nowhere).
I sometimes wish I could leave my phone at home for the day and just live as if I were in the “old days” without the mounds of technology that surrounds us. I know that my life would be less stressful if I did, but for some reason I can’t do it. I feel so attached to it, like I would be missing out if I didn’t have my phone on me.
Has your phone ever broken down? How about your computer? Mine have. In fact (oddly enough), I’m writing this post in Microsoft Word because my PC won’t connect to my wireless network for whatever reason. At some point, we have to just be okay with it. The sense of being unattached (although forcibly unattached) is liberating. Since I’m forced to just move on with my life without it (until I get it fixed), I’m confronted with my dependency. Through this confrontation I am able to find peace. Peace with just letting things be how they are, and peace without dependency.
This isn’t easy to accomplish, or at least wasn’t for me. It has been a long road of trial and error to get to a place where I can just be with whatever happens. Here is one example of what I remind myself of when I am confronted with change, or loss of control, or things not going as planned, etc:
“I’m making this up.”
This single phrase has completely turned my life around. Do you realize how many things we make up out of thin air just to try to make sense of what is happening, make things go our way, or get by in life? Everyone does it, and most are not aware of it. Here are a few examples of things we make up in our heads:
Work Stress: “There’s no way I can get this presentation done by 7am tomorrow, especially with all of this paperwork I still have to take care of!”
Fact: The presentation is due by 7am and there is paperwork to do
Made Up: You don’t have time to finish it all
Jealousy: “Why did he just look at that girl like that? I can’t believe he did that right in front of me! What, am I not pretty enough for him?”
Fact: He turned his head or his eyes
Made Up: He was checking out another girl, and he doesn’t find you attractive
Exercise: “I just worked a 10 hour day and I’m completely exhausted. there’s no way I’m going to make it to the gym, especially with all of the work I still have to do tonight.”
Fact: You worked for 10 hours, and there is work that is still due
Made Up: You can’t make it to the gym because of a time constraint and low level of energy
When we say these things, we believe them entirely. They aren’t real. They’re just things that we make up so that we can be free of responsibility! It’s amazing how real they seem at the time though. Once you tell yourself to face reality and the fact that you’re just making them up in your head, something AMAZING happens…they disappear. You will have your very own epiphany that you too go through life making things up that aren’t based on reality. You will start to see how much they run your life and make your decisions for you. Then, once you become aware of what you’re doing, you’ll have a choice – you can say “I’m making this up right now” and have it all disappear. Another way you can spin it is to ask yourself “Am I making this up?” It takes practice, but not much. Trust me, this wake up call is going to move you into being unstoppable in your efforts – because you won’t have yourself holding you back anymore.
What are your thoughts on this?