We live in a world where we are constantly being bombarded with stimuli. We surf the net while watching TV. We walk with our eyes glued to a small smart device. We drive and talk or text. At the health club multiple TV screens flash images as music is played and we work out. We blast classical music to our babies in the mistaken belief that the music is better than play for brain development.
How about just hanging out? Well, it seems that there is not enough time in the day. Years ago I went backpacking and would hang out for hours watching the clouds cast shadows over a mountain lake. Fast forward to now where I feel uneasy when I’m not doing anything.
Labor department data shows that a whopping 83% of us spend absolutely no time daily just thinking. (Why and how the labor department got this info remains a mystery to me). Even worse was a study which was conducted at the University of Virginia.
In this study participants were left alone with nothing to do. However, they could give themselves electric shocks to lessen their boredom. Two thirds of the men and a quarter of the women opted for the shocks rather than just hanging out in the room by themselves.
What does this say about the current state of our minds? When our brains are constantly stimulated, it falls to reason that we will be more anxious, have more trouble sleeping and perhaps most importantly, miss out on those special moments of life. No medication can quiet our minds better than the occasional solitude and avoidance of technology.