9 thoughts on “Living in a Brainwashed Culture of Urgency

  • June 18, 2013 at 5:23 am

    Then why is that most of this stuff including the “false excitement” advertisers methods irritate me and actually have a negative effect. Is it the era I grew up in? I was born in 1947. I can see through the tricks and the psychology – I must be a real disappointment to those people who think they know how to manipulate me lol

  • June 19, 2013 at 11:19 am

    I’ve thought of it as people today think of themselves as so important, they need those minute to minute updates to maintain that inflated facade. I like how you present the choice to be in the moment, or to let the “urgency” take precedence; we can take the time to make a decision instead of passively letting our attention go there just because. Thanks for this!

  • June 19, 2013 at 11:29 am

    Hi Ian

    I was born in 1942 and so agree with you! Irritating to be pushed and rushed and it has an opposite, hostile effect on me too.

    In a rash moment of foolishness, after years of resisting, I registered on facebook just to have a look and see what it was really all about—just an anonymous presence, no personal details revealed. Ever since, I have been clamoured at to “like” stuff, pushed to be-friend all the world, daily getting messages asking me to party with complete strangers. I find all this unwanted poking at maddening.

    My perceived need is to live quietly, simply and enjoy just being …naturally interested in the world and what’s going on in it, with my own enthusiasms and interests, but not bullied & jollied into silly, never-ending, empty excitements.

    Yes, must be our era?!

    • June 21, 2013 at 3:23 am

      Hi Ann
      Maybe to say it is our era might be a little too simplistic? Although my formative years were certainly devoid of the sort of “feverish” advertising we now see. I can also appreciate that my attitude may be due to other factors as well. Personality type to start with. Education and intelligence maybe also.
      I think what I deplore more is the almost misleading lean that business is displaying – a lot of companies lie by omission just to get someone to agree to their product. I was brought up being taught it was wrong to lie – and now it is almost compulsory to become a politician LOL
      Cheers Ian

  • June 19, 2013 at 2:07 pm

    And the over abundance of multi-tasking that I see in children and adults seems to be part of this urgency to respond to every stimulus, and now. The large consumer product’s corporations and many parts of the federal government and mass media have got so many people responding like Pavlovian dogs. As things are speeding up, it seems like we are emotionally, morally, and socially devolving instead of evolving and maturing. I use a wind up watch and a rotary dial phone as reminders to keep attentive to my mind as it is bombarded with stuff. I keep a good firewall on an open mind as much as I am able in my limited awareness of it all.

  • June 19, 2013 at 9:56 pm

    The item in your essay that concerns me the most is the effect of this constant “you have to panic now, or shop, or worry” is that the neural connections in he brain are affected. Those of us without tv, (bravo to the wind up watch and dial phone) are perhaps saying what is important is my relationships with what I use and what I choose to do. Even with techie things like — I updated some passwords today and for each entity I use, I found myself taking the time to realize who they are in my life. But if the brain is always on alert, no time to have a Feeling of much depth about our actions and items we own. YOur suggestion to ask before buying the panic message would of course also effect the neuronal connections. A good reason for me to do it.

  • June 20, 2013 at 3:24 pm

    I love these thoughts and believe they are so important to living well in the information age. I think the urgency that is created by having so much immediate access to information and to communication at our fingertips can easily ‘rob’ us of the present moment. We appear to be connecting, we have the desire to connect, but are we authentically present and connected to others or what we are doing ? Or are we on a kind of treadmill of urgency. A healthy way to adapt is to develop a way of managing this flow of information and become more intentional about how we consume and/or react to it. I’ve read some research that indicates that, for instance, getting immediate results in things like a web search has led children to give up on tasks, or lose interest sooner than they would in the past. Are we losing our tolerance for curiosity, exploration and problem solving by getting an easy answer ‘now’ ? Having it all NOW unfortunately seems to close up spaces where we can actually experience the NOW. Thank you Elisha

  • June 26, 2013 at 12:33 am

    Dear Elisha

    I enjoyed this post. From my own experience, there is a tendency to rush things, for the mind to grab hold of something constantly. It is madness and can be tiring too (if I follow the thoughts around). The way I cope with it is by slowing down. Instead of merrily following the whims of my mind, I’ll get to select what to follow or what to discard. One thing that I find is that I can get tired and as well as have the feeling of loss of orientation if I do not slow down. I also do meditation to counter this.

  • August 3, 2013 at 11:33 am

    This is such a relevant article. I first thought I wish I read it 5 years ago but sometimes you have to learn from experience. In my case, I was always an anxious person, but growing up in Africa there is less urgency. However, since moving to Asia, the combination of anxiety and information overload has, in fact, caused me to become epileptic! Now every time I see a situation where I feel there is too much stimuli to process, I need to step back and focus on myself. This is so difficult. I just hope it becomes easier with time.


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