Evolution Away from Great Communication

Communication is a lost, or disappearing, art! Do YOU want to improve YOUR life? Interpersonal, eyeball to eyeball, communication is going the way of the dinosaurs or rotary telephone or TV Western shows. But where has it gone and what has replaced people eloquently conversing in thoughtful, heartfelt interactions? Social media has taken its place AND social media communication skills have not found their way past superficial levels equal to what toddlers or, at best, middle school level people might use. Great “adult” conversations do not happen commonly, if at all, on social media. Social media is not designed that way.

Are we evolving away from face to face interpersonal communication? Or, are the newer generations “wired” differently than older generations who grew up before the technology revolution took over?

Loneliness is an epidemic especially affecting the millennial generation. Why? Possibly because the skills and practice of good interpersonal communication are poorly used, if used at all. Just look around in our culture and you see people are addicted to checking on their social media instead of the person in front of them. Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Tumblr, Google+, Instagram, LinkedIn, and more appear to be more interesting and satisfying than attempting to connect with the words, gestures, and feelings used in communication by the live person sitting in front of you. Mature adults have complicated relationship needs and these are not well resolved with cute social media, snarky statements or behaviors.

If there is doubt in you regarding the changing patterns of communication, just get on an commercial airplane. People used to talk to the people in their row or watch the movie. Now, fewer people actually speak to the people they are sitting next to on the plane. People disappear into their “devices” even if they are not on social media due to “airplane mode.” Why are we not sharing our stories with live human beings sitting right next to us?… Perhaps, we have just lost the skill of chatting. Perhaps, we have “evolved” and speaking with words heard by the person near to you is being lost as a social activity to be replaced by loneliness…

Why? Where did this come from? Is technology so seductive? Are young people so insecure that they have to fall into the social media trap just so they can fit in? If so, what are they fitting into? Or, are we moving away from verbal and interpersonal, physical interaction into a future where we all communicate psychically and through our developed skills of intuition? We are evolving into a culture of addiction to our “devices,” social media, and instantaneous, though shallow, responses. As if the number of “likes” or clicks has given us a sense of value. (The answer is “YES.”) This misses out on finding a smile or raised eyebrow or a noticeable shoulder breath in your communication partner.

Truly and deeply connecting with another person is created by as many non-verbal perceptions as by the actual words themselves. This connection has greater emotional and spiritual value than checking on the “likes” to a recent posting. No wonder we are in an epidemic of loneliness in our society. Consider putting your “device” aside and looking into the eyes of your partner with as little “Judgement” as possible get to know their story! Employ the skill of asking open ended questions to stimulate clarity and greater consciousness in your communication partner. (Quit thinking ahead for some cute, but snarky, response and show your partner the respect they deserve as another struggling life form.) You may find the long awaited information you have been seeking….

Our culture has become polarized. Many people lack all civility when they are confronted by another person with a contrary belief. This lacks perspective and keep us narrow minded, reactionary, and emotionally fragile. A different opinion can be very useful in forming a longterm style of behavior and lifestyle. Living only within your familiar beliefs seems safe but in the long run it is not easier or even safer. More about this in another blog on communication. Be open. It does not mean you have to agree with or even like what the next person will say but this perspective came into your consciousness for a reason. Learn what you came here to learn. Bless and respect every interaction which occurs in your present life…

If you are READY and looking for a supportive community where you can share your story, your wisdom, and grow spiritually in a non-religious environment, consider Masters of the Journey.
You are a Blessing! You are a Master! Your wisdom from your life experience can have great value to other pilgrims on the path toward awakening and enlightenment.

The Masters of the Journey has events which are updated on our Facebook page which is found at: www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney Please comment on this blog and share, if appropriate. More of our blogs are based on spiritual consciousness and can be found at www.dstress.com/blog

Beyond the Selfie

The Selfie, Get Noticed!

If you are feeling lonely, maybe even invisible, are you hoping to be noticed? These days, many people take to social media to present themselves and their lives in ways for others to “notice.” Images of your life are usually much more than a Selfie! Outrageous pictures in interesting places or with interesting people DO NOT MAKE YOU INTERESTING!

As a side note, the most telling images in a self-portrait may not be pictures of you, but of what you most cherish. These can say a lot about who YOU really are. So pictures or representations of what you find attractive, desirable, interesting, and important can tell a lot about you. (This can be used to attract or affect other people to you or can be a tool to explore yourself.)

So what you “post” in the way of a photo or comment or “sharing” can, and will, say a lot about YOU. Your FB page or Instagram account or your Linkedin profile or whatever social media you use becomes YOU as a person to the world. Yes, you know this but are you vigilant with your outward appearance and what does this persona really say about YOU? I can be snarky and sarcastic. This shows up in my postings. Am I OK with this representation? I had better be prepared to take full responsibility for how I come across, especially to other snarky, sarcastic people. It is telling to realize how much my social media actually says about me, intended AND unintended.

If you attempt to show your good side and your virtues without consciously presenting the real YOU with your foibles, flaws, inadequacies, weaknesses, and imperfections, these will still show up in your selfies and other postings. Remember, you are more than your contrived image which you attempt to portray in real life, or even underneath for “image.” Your real life lurks and will find a way to come to the surface. Like the weeds who grow through the cracks in the pavement. Just the act of taking and then sharing a Selfie says a lot about you. Not the least is that you feel you require attention that may not be coming to you and that you have insecurities below the surface. Selfies are cute and can be fun. But, it is also important to examine your true motivation in posting them.

By the way (BTW,) after you post your selfie, do you become obsessed with the “response?” The “likes” and the “Shares?” Or, the “Comments” which it generates. Does this give you the feeling of self-worth or does it diminish your self-esteem? Does the number of “friends” or “views” make your day or does it frustrate you into even more outrageous behaviors in future postings? Are you living in your selfie and not really liking the existence you have in your “real” life? Consider all possibilities. That is what we are here to learn…

Technology has created a new lifestyle for people who live in our world of technology. (There are luddites who avoid change and new technologies, but we do not hear much from them because they do not use social media…) The “social fabric” of human interacting has changed and we, as a culture, have NOT figured out the etiquette for using social media in the most appropriate, not fad driven, ways. Many of us reading this blog are willing to jump into the “latest” technologies, at least to “try” them out. We do not fully realize the risks, or the full advantages, of participation in internet based social media and how this may effect our future lives (because this is still a vast unknown.) Tread with care AND take responsibility for the experimentation that you do. As stylish as it appears, like a tattoo, it can become a permanent scar you will have to live with ’cause it may never fully go away… (Once it is “Out There” in the “cloud” it can never be fully deleted or reset.)

Even in this personal ranting, as you read between my words, you can learn about ME. But, also remember that what you respond to in this ranting blog also says a great deal about YOU! Enjoy and be bold, but not unconscious, when you take, and then, post your next Selfie.

On another related note… Be careful about what you see and read AND BELIEVE on the internet. People and organizations post their opinion. These are often “Alternative facts” meaning these are not fact checked, honest or REAL! They are pure opinion written and shared as if these were truth. Be careful for every “Truth” the opposite is equally “TRUE!” Sorry, but facts and truths these days are only opinions… Sad, that the loudest liars have large groups of “followers” who do not check on the facts but accept negative opinions as THEIR truth.

Does this sound “snarky” or simply “True?” Take responsibility for what you say, what you read and believe, and how you act on these opinions!!!

Our community, Masters of the Journey, can help support you and your development of consciousness.

The Masters of the Journey has events which are updated on our Facebook page which is found at: www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney Please comment on this blog and share, if appropriate. More of our blogs are based on spiritual consciousness and can be found at www.dstress.com/blog

Connections: Reaching Out

In this blog I am drawn to writing about our innate need for connections. We are NOT solitary beings. Often times in our modern world, our connections are lacking. Lacking in depth, in emotional value, in the support which is required, and in the basic instinctual desire to know that we are all “one” and part of a much greater Divine. So two perspectives.

First, we were born into this world as helpless, dependent beings. There is no chance to survive without basic nurturing care. We can not feed ourselves. We can not bathe ourselves. We have parents who love us and take good care of us, if we are lucky, or we survive an existence with emotional and maybe physical scars. We learn from the people around us and the environment that we are born into. We do better when we are loved and we do not thrive when love is lacking. (I have read research conducted on children raised in an Eastern European, sterile, orphanage where the babies/children were fed and changed but not held or loved. These children grew up deprived and with serious physical and emotional challenges, different from children who were held and loved.)

We can not thrive without love and connection as an infant. This does NOT disappear as we age. Most people require human interaction, to varying degrees, and the “connections” that go along with these relationships. We continue to learn and gain perspective by communicating with other people and lifeforms (pets, plants, nature.) People often strive for “Deeper Connections” and more intimate relationships. We do not thrive when we feel alone or lonely or separated from the nurturing of friends and family, our “tribe.”

But in our culture, in our modern world, we are often separated by technology and “Judgements” from the people we live around and work around. Have you ever seen people out to dinner with both people on their smart phones, texting, or checking social media, or posting pictures of their meal?… What is this really about? We are not encouraged to put down our technology and be truly “present” with our partner. Many of us have lost the basic skills of verbal and non-verbal communication that were so essential when we were in tribes (and family groups) where our survival was based on interaction and support from the group. Do not get me wrong, I do not want to go back to live in a primitive, life and death struggle to survive but we have lost some of our fundamental skills (and are paying the price.)

Today, we may want to join a community to find human contact. Maybe we wear jerseys of our favorite sports franchise and root for them on Sunday with other fans. Or, we think about going to a “MeetUp” group to hang out with people of similar interests. Or, we go on a “dating” website to find a perfect partner. (Though we still have to meet and do the “Mating Dance” which includes communication and hopefully honesty…) This pursuit is desperate, often unfulfilling, and generally superficial. If so, then it does not satisfy the need to connect deeply. (Our egos and our judgements of the mind are constantly comparing and keeping us separate from other people who are searching for the emotional and spiritual exchanges which form the best connections.)

Secondly, our most important purpose is to support and assist the people we meet on our path through life. Most people floating around unhappily, or at least unsatisfied, are people thinking that their success is defined by how much money they have, or how many toys they have acquired, or how many trips they have taken, or how many MeetUp groups they have joined (but not attended.) People, today, feel that the number of friends they have and how many people respond to their social media posts (about themselves) are important and valued as levels of success. Maybe, it is NOT about “me.”

Think back when you did something “good” for someone else. It probably allowed you to feel good and connected. Get out of your head and back into your heart. Feel good by doing good things for other people! If you want to be loved, you have to go out and give love, unconditionally. If you are giving anything with an expectation that it comes back, then you will be disappointed.

Connections with value are based upon people caring, truly caring, about others and finding the best ways (you can) to support and assist these other souls on their journey. Even the simplest smile or kind word can show the love and respect for the person in front of you who “showed up” to have a place in your world (and your journey.) Yes, you need to work and support yourself, but you can do so with the feeling of loving acceptance for the other pilgrims in life whom you meet along the way. (Easier said than done, but work on this.) Your happiness and joy will come more frequently when you realize that we are “ONE” with all lifeforms and in this life together to grow, to learn from our challenges, and to love the connections which we can create.

Connections, healthy connections, are the most important thing to work on. Your success in life comes not from how much money is in the bank but how many people call you a friend.

Namaste. Your are a Master and it is a great blessing to find these few moments to connect with you. Your sharing of your time and attention as a “witness” is a blessing… Know that you have done good in our world just by being you, even with imperfections and flaws…

Masters of the Journey is a community that supports everyone who are on their path through life and would like to find supportive, hopefully, non-judgemental connections.