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Overwhelmed? Go back to bed!

Updated on January 18, 2012

Ever felt overwhelmed?

A great sea of information is battering us to the left and right. The waves are increasing in size and power. You put up your arms to sheild yourself from the ones that advertise and consume, you embrace the ones that enlighten and guide....but it's getting difficult, it's getting harder to judge. You can't embrace them all. You have to start guessing.... It's hard and you're getting very wet.

Everything you always trusted such as the news, schools, healthcare are brought into question. There is the British news, there is the news from other parts of the world, there is the internet, and interestingly enough, they seldom agree with one another. They seem to be vehicles of propaganda making us become rather sceptical of government and particularly the media (though that's perhaps just my personal reaction to being overwhelmed with conflicting information.)

I am troubled by the extent to which things that used to be stigmatised are now normalised through television, internet etc. It is almost celebrated through grizzly horror films and peculiar TV documentaries. More and more horrors are shown graphically on our TV screens either through the news or dramatizations.

Sometimes I want to just stop it, stop it existing, stop knowing that things go on.

Coming across incoherantly? Let me try to use an analogy.

Imagine you're a sportsman/woman. A top tennis player maybe. What if then, you were suddenly invaded by advertisements and information of everything to know about volleyball, then golf, then rugby, then polo, then every sport that was ever invented, how it is played and its influence over a country, it's politics, social aspects, history etc etc. and of course this is just the avenue of sport that I'm referring to. Perhaps s/he could decide to IGNORE everything that didn't affect their profession, thus causing less distraction and enabling them to excell in peace. It makes sense.

But what if you're an 'all-rounder' Someone who is not an expert in one field particularly, however they may be qualified or at least very knowledgeable in a few areas. Where do they fit in? How on earth do they even begin to address what they want to find out and where to even begin?

Perhaps they could start by asking the 'big' questions, how did it all start? What is conciousness? Where do I fit in to all this? Perhaps they may find solace in religion. I commend them. I wish I could, it must be comforting indeed.

But what if you just cannot accept that God is different to any other field of interest. To gain from it or to become an expert in it you risk 'ignoring' other areas of (I suppose you could call it) wisdom. You may become extremely 'good at' religion like the tennis player, but to have reached that level, you have had to devote your time to it entirely.

So that is how experts are born, they make new discoveries, they learn from past experts in their feild, they add their expertise to history. The problem is (for the all rounders or the nothing specials)... nobody really knows what to do. Which path to take, what is right or wrong anymore? There are so many choices they don't know what to buy, who to trust, what to study, what to ignore,what is a sham, what is truth?

It's a hell of a lot to be confronted with on a daily basis, feeling guilty that perhaps you're not using your time wisely.

It used to be so simple, you lived to address all your simple needs of warmth, food, shelter etc.. but now these things and plently more come as standard. Now we have a lot of boxes to 'tick' in order to function as a 'successful' human being. I believe the extensive media and advertising bombardment has created the following criteria of 'success and happiness' in the West

  • Money
  • Individualism
  • Beauty
  • Happiness
  • Intelligence
  • Knowledge
  • Family
  • Confidence
  • Health
  • Fashion and style.

It's quite a list, and by no means complete. I suppose people seldom meet all of these areas, so like the tennis player, they ignore the rest and perhaps concentrate on one.......

Can you do that?

I can't.

What I worry about as a mother to two young children, is how long before they're going to see some awful thing on Youtube or even on the news?

Not long I guess. Kids are kids and they're curious. However years ago children would never have actually seen visual footage of the grim things that go on in the world. Could they cope with that?

I hope they're resiliant.

I hope they're tough.

I hope they're as strong willed as the tennis player,

or at least able to ignore what they don't wish to see.


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    • Talisker profile image

      Honor Meci 6 years ago from UK

      I'm inclined to agree with you, and thank you for your recommendations, I will follow those up. I've just decided to lock down to a few interests (such as piano, our small family business and being as good a mum as I can) There are several other avenues of interest such as hubpages I suppose, but they have to take a bit of a back seat!

      As to the images, I'm concerned that children are becoming experts at searching the web, yet they are not (in my opinion) mature/cognitively ready enough to deal with the huge amount of images and informtaion that can come up 'accidently'

      I remember teaching children of about 7 about using search engines (ICT lesson) and they had to search for different animals on google images...lets just say there were some unsavoury pictures that came up.

      To be honest, the kids didn't seem to notice, but it still leaves me a little uncomfortable.

      Kids with access to every piece of information there is out there....just makes them very vulnerable.

    • B. Leekley profile image

      Brian Leekley 6 years ago from Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA

      On the question are children resilient, read the CHILDREN OF CRISIS book series by Robert Coles. (Conclusion: they are.) On choosing a path, write down your ideals and be guided by them. If whoever dies with the most toys wins is your ideal, take a path of accumulating material goods. If compassion, kindness, and empathy are ideals for you, go where those ideals take you. If you highly value the well being of children, follow where that takes you. And so on. Perhaps you would find A PATH WITH HEART by Kornfield interesting. On God as just another field of interest, consider Unitarian Universalism, where questioning is the norm and the free and responsible search for truth and meaning is a way of life. On protecting children from grim images, I'm curious about that concern -- what sort of images and what age of children?