Unplug!

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So, it’s nearly midnight and I’m on another coffee-filled rant! I’ve spent the last two weeks doing this Minimalism thing. Long story short, it’s the lifestyle of treasuring the things you have, rather than chasing the things you “need”. Flashy things like iPhones and Playstation 4 systems. It’s really given me perspective, while opening my eyes to a lot of things.

As I kicked back this past Wednesday and watched a fantastic sunset, it became clear to me that nearly everything that matters in our society…shouldn’t. Seeing a magazine ad for a bluetooth-powered dog watering system today, well, that drove it home for me. Most of us live life as though we’re rabbits chasing a carrot dangling from a stick. Society tells us what’s important to us and we chase after it, only to have the carrot replaced with something new – the stick moved a bit further down. I tried to figure out the root of all evil, if you will, it brought me to THE MEDIA.

Don’t think this is a bash against CNN you Democrats, because I’m talking Fox here too. The CNN anchor just happened to be easier on the eyes. I’m talking ESPN, MSNBC, social networking sites(ads), Youtube(ads), radio…hell, I can do this all day. Which, going by my clock, ended seven minutes ago. My point here is that our lives are being driven by what the media tells us is important. We’re allowing our values and identities to be molded by news anchors with cheap pearls and fake smiles. UNPLUG IT.

I’m telling you, as a Minimalist, that life is much better without the interference. The average teenager spends three hours a day on a computer, doing non-school related things. THREE! What in the hell could be so imperative that our children need three hours a day to be online, and, even more disturbing, we are letting them! I’m constantly hearing people complain about cyber spying, identity theft and so forth. Just unplug. It’s very simple. I do it 27 or 28 days a month and it does wonders for the soul. You begin to see things around you that you may have missed before. Like that child who is begging for your attention. You begin to care less about a potential war in foreign lands that we all know is being forced to profit the corporations that control us, and more about what truly matters. Like the impeccable beauty of a cloud-filled sky that is radiant orange with sunset.Put down the smart phone and pick up a book. If you can’t do without your favorite television programs, buy them on disc. Use video games in moderation and play them offline. If the provider(yes Microsoft, I’m looking at you) REQUIRES you to be online to play games you’ve already purchased, tell them to fuck off and play something else!

I remember when the internet went mainstream. It promised to change the world, and, it has. We’re now a world full of idiots who “can’t” live without Facebook, YouTube or a stack of other timesucks that steal you away from those who need you the most. Your family. Keep the propaganda-filled television programs off and use the internet sparingly. Then, and only then, will you find the inner-peace of Minimalism. My two cents. -John

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