Social Change: An Interpersonal Approach
If you’ve been following our posts up to this point, you may have noticed a common theme: we focus a lot on the self and the family. Yes, this is our area of expertise, our wheelhouse; but we also subscribe to the idea that self-awareness is a primary and fundamental concept, akin to breathing. Without it we cannot engage, but can only hope that the system accepts us for who they think we are.
There are countless atrocities, apocalyptic headlines, and injustices to cover upon this platform; and while our opinions regarding them are abundant, there is a process that must unfold. The call-to-action being proposed here is one of self-reflection. It involves asking ourselves “why?” and starting with “you”.
We’re all trying to make the best of our situation, but too often our situations get the best of us. And, unfortunately, many of us are simply doing our best to avoid confrontation. In all likelihood, the people giving us the most trouble are not the people reading these words, so it is imperative that we cultivate a calm and open understanding sense of ourselves in order to address these people/situations. In this case, self-actualization is the call to action.
The violence, the riots, the smoke, the guns, the hate, the lies, the doubt, the fear; it has us all on edge and wanting to do something. Reactive, spontaneous gestures merely provide us all with instantly gratifying snippets that are suggestive of a movement which requires so much more action and care than what we have estimated and given. And yet, the act of self-discovery is one that may allow us to approach this global hysteria with more clarity and purpose.
Are you numb yet? Due to the fact that it is our inherent nature that we connect with other people on a social level, and due to the addictive nature of electronic devices, many of us can’t help but pick up our phones…all day long. At some point, it became more convenient than maintaining tangible, non-digital relationships. What sought to connect people, rather quickly became a catalyst for hate, depression and confusion in it’s ugliest of forms. This, strange as it may seem, is a good starting point for all of us.
If you must remain on social media, whether it be for your business or your livelihood or your Great Aunt Gertrude, you must minimize. There are groups out there who are stalking other groups so that they can figure out the best way to counter their demonstrations with hate. This has stepped way beyond trollish and straight into a social nightmare. If you have no true, identifiable ties with your Facebook account or worse, it causes you anxiety just to keep up, drop it; FB even lets you keep your own photos once you leave! (what else they keep is anyone’s guess).
Letting go is extremely difficult for many reasons, but the less we put on our plate, the happier and more productive we become. We must be tactful, patient and willing to grow in order for all of this to come to fruition. It can all start with a delete — once you click that button, whether it be junk emails, social media “friends” or a personal relationship, the acknowledgement itself is so liberating that you might just make room for people and ideas that matter.
At this point, we must connect ourselves with the greater good; we must ask for more. If your activism, your business or your livelihood thrives on social media, continue to use it for good. There is no shortage of information out there, so let your contributions be meaningful, humanistic and palpable. Know that if someone ‘unfollows’ you, it’s for the better and know that it’s alright to say “I don’t need this type of energy in my life”.
Find the causes that matter. Net neutrality is an interesting development: what we click on automatically gets computed and placed back into our sphere. Yet, what strikes me as odd is not the fact that we’re all complicit in this game, but rather we begin to recognize these images that are being reflected back upon us as being a part of “who we are”, further shaping our personalities and behaviors; and we eerily accept them, as if powerless. This is precisely what we are expected to do, to accept ourselves for who they think we are.
Let us utilize this intrusion of privacy to our advantage: click on things that speak to you, so that when the “All Powerful Internet” speaks to you, it is to you and nobody else. Our objective is not to narrow your perspective; on the contrary, it is to help you open it so that you can see the world through your own eyes and enact your own truths, based on what you know and feel is right from within.
If you find an activist inside of you, keep fighting; if you find a pacifist within, keep living; if you’re struggling to find anything at all, strike it down and begin anew. Let us try and shift our focus from limitations to opportunities, because this world, no matter how cruel and unforgiving it may seem, has something for everyone. Find it out of love and connect with it.