Information Consumption in 2021 & Creating Stillness
Meditation, gratitude, grounding and stillness are all daily practices. This is such a core part of my ‘self’, with years of practice, discipline and commitment to a still, positive and healthy mind.
So many people say “I can’t meditate”. People also say “I can’t read” and I don’t think they realise how powerfully influential both practices can be.
We like to choose the easy version. The one that requires the least effort. We read about 105,000 words (23 per second) a day within 12 waking hours. Texts, news feeds, notifications, stories, we are reading and consuming so much more than we have the conscious awareness of. What if we worked toward lowering that atrocious ‘daily screen time’ number and fed our minds with direct words written by the most intelligent people in the world instead?
We come home and ‘numb’ our minds to ‘wind down’ after our day by turning the TV on. When watching TV, we are in a hypnotic trance where our brains are put into alpha state (during the day we are in ‘beta’ — where our attention is directed towards cognitive tasks, engaged in problem solving and focused mental activity). The neocortex (used for analysis and reasoning) is offline, but the visual cortex is highly stimulated — taking in all of the information you’re having thrown at you but not processing it. We think we may be “vegging out”, winding down, being in a passive state after our long day, but we are still stimulating our minds. And that hypnotic state I mentioned, has your subconscious deeply consuming the information, energy and mentalities of those you are watching on the screen.
When consuming at least 34 gigabytes of information per day, our minds are not having time to process this insane download and certainly doesn’t allow for reflection, stillness, mental clarity and stillness. Which is why it’s so incredibly important to CREATE SPACE and allow true time to cease that incessant mind-chatter.
Meditation is a practice. If you don’t read for ten years and then pick up a book, you’re not going to be able to focus and take in the information first go. But if you read 5 pages a day, then 10, then a chapter each time, you’re going to make progress, you’re going to strengthen your mental focus and be able to consume the information. Meditation is the same. You’re not meant to get it first go. We’d all be zen as fuck if we could. Mental clarity is a reward for the discipline and effort you put into your mental health and wellbeing.
You're not meant to get it first go. We'd all be zen as fuck if we could.
There isn’t just one way to meditate, and I think that may be where people get caught up and say they can’t do it. I had to try a few different styles myself when I first began, and thankfully I found my favourites that helped me stick to it. Here’s different options to try:
Using a meditation app, like Balance, to teach yourself meditation skills, like how to stay focused and label your thoughts as they arise instead of getting carried away in them. I use these with the below options
Guided meditations by spiritual leaders, such as Melissa Ambrosini, Rebecca Campbell, Gabby Bernstein
Sitting still on your own, listening to binaural beats. The app “beautifulness” is my favourite, and there are lots on YouTube too if you search "solfeggio frequency" or "binaural beats"
YouTube and Spotify guided meditations
Buy a book on meditation and voice record (on your phone) yourself reading the meditation out. Hearing your own voice guide you through it has a profound psychological impact. Hey, do this with your goals too while you’re at it!
Some of the most successful entrepreneurs, CEO’s and business minded figures meditate every day. Tim Ferriss (author of The 4 Hour Work Week) interviewed 140 people at the top of their fields and said “Despite the fact that these are people from tennis to surfing to cryptocurrency to fill-in-the-blank, like any field you can possibly imagine — some type of morning mindfulness or meditation practice would span I'd say 90% of the respondents.” I have some friends with incredible businesses, making 80k per month at an incredibly young age (24), and meditation, visualisation, journaling are all key components for the start of their day. Insane inspiration flows through when you allow it.
Switch off that mind chatter, turn the TV off, put your phone onto do not disturb and leave it in another room, create space and you’ll soon see what deeper, creative, more potent thoughts and ideas are able to flow through to you. You create your own reality and this is the key to the start of it.
You create your own reality and this is the key to the start of it.