Information Consumption Overload The way we consume information has changed dramatically in the past twenty years. Instead of relying on radio, TV … [Read More...]
Information Consumption Overload
The way we consume information has changed dramatically in the past twenty years.
Instead of relying on radio, TV or newspapers many of us head to the internet and social media. We are overwhelmed with information. Many people feel we are in information consumption overload. More and more people are simply choosing to opt out entirely because they feel maxed out.
Last year I started opting out of all online marketing.
I unsubscribed from places like Anthro, Mod Cloth etc. I feel better having done that. Less temptation to spend money on stuff I don’t need.
The amount of blogs I read has decreased dramatically over the past couple of years.
Blogging is my preferred form of social media because it feels more connected and authentic than Instagram. I am very loyal to the blogs I have chosen to keep reading, commenting almost every time I read them.
I follow more people on Instagram but I interact with very few of them. Simply “hearting” someone does not feel like an authentic interaction to me. I don’t feel the need or desire to interact with people on Instagram. They feel as lifeless, disconnected and unreal to me as the models in a Vogue magazine. Is that because they have curated unrealistic feeds of inauthentic lives?
A study by the owners of Instagram, Facebook, revealed that when people spend lots of time passively consuming information – reading but not interacting with people – they report feeling worse afterwards.
A girlfriend of mine succinctly described this as diminishing ourselves because of the fake and highly curated images of someone else, AKA the “comparison trap”.
Are you guilty of falling into the comparison trap?
I know I can feel woefully inadequate if I spend too much time scrolling Instagram. I’m very thankful my feed is broken up with cute pugs and French bulldogs.
For daily news I currently read three different websites hoping that somewhere, in the middle of all the bias, lays a remote version of the truth.
There is too much fake news and highly edited newsfeeds to trust any one site.
Some days I avoid reading the news altogether, I only skim the headlines and head straight the comedy section. The news is too overwhelming and depressing.
Limiting where and how I choose to consume information is curating my personal feed of how I want to view the world.
Do you seek out websites and forums of like-minded people that affirm your already held beliefs?
Are we creating a greater chasm because we choose to no longer be exposed to depressing realities and outrageous opposing views?
Is the way we consume information shaping our lives?
What People Think Of Me Is None Of My Business
As a blogger I never know how someone is going to react to what I write or if it will resonate with them. For the most part I write to share my thoughts and feelings on subjects that interest me and hopefully offer up a laugh or two along the way.
Five years ago I did a style interview for Sylvia at 40+ Style.
I enjoyed doing the interview and I even appreciated re-reading what I wrote just now.
Here is one of my favourite quotes,
Confidence can carry off any outfit. Confidence comes with self acceptance and loving yourself. If you can do that, you can wear almost anything you like, no matter your age.
Needless to say, that interview was met with some hostility and negativity by one reader who said that I lacked elegance and wearing distressed jeans, berets and bright colours was for those twenty-five or younger.
To me this was and still is antiquated thinking.
Needless to say, I responded,
Almost daily in real life people compliment me on my clothing choices. I don’t ask for it. They offer it. People always remark about how well dressed I am.
Maybe they can’t tell what age I am. Maybe they don’t have a preconceived idea of what 47 is supposed to look like. Maybe “elegant” fashion for women over 40 isn’t subdued, neutral and forgettable.
I would hope that I have obtained a certain level of elegance with my choices but that I haven’t sacrificed my creative sense of self just because I am over a certain age limit.
I realize that my style isn’t for everyone and I certainly wouldn’t be wearing it if I thought I didn’t have the confidence or body with which to carry it off. My goal is to look the best I can, never be referred to as boring and leave a lasting impression.
I’m not disappearing because I’m older. I’m still the same vibrant, sexy, creative relevant person I always was, but now with a few wrinkles and much more experience under my belt.
And I have to mention this…under 25??? Yikes. Is that when women must give up keeping current and being relevant with the rest of the world?
I wrote an entire blog post dedicated to why I disagreed with this woman. You can read the full post here.
This is some of what I said,
How I dress is a statement to the world as to how I want to be perceived. My clothes communicate a message without ever having to open my mouth.
What I hope they are saying is:
What I hope my clothes aren’t saying is:
like everyone else,
I recently received a wonderful comment in response to this post that I’d like to share with you.
Having looked at the last post of this wonderful thread, I am a LITTLE (60 months!) behind, but your knowledge and self-awareness have been quite insightful and most helpful to me on my own “journey”.
You see, I am a transgender woman who recently began Hormone Replacement Therapy and I constantly struggle with not being “pretty” enough during this awkward phase. But as your less-than-civil beret-disparager above and those I have been in contact with have shown, people are more than happy to share THEIR thoughts about how THEY think we should live our lives. Ugh…
As you illustrated in your above writing, we ALL get to live our lives as we choose…wear that beret if you like…head out the door, even if you are stubbly and not feeling cute. We ALL get to present ourselves in a manner of OUR choosing and, here’s the hard part, ignoring those really have NO say in how we choose to conduct our lives.
We humans are hard-wired to care about what people think because we are a social animal, but where does it end? Who gets the final say on our what choice/hairstyle/skirt length/shoe choice/hair color, etc? WE DO!
As an example, my daughter is, as she identifies, a bo-ho chick. She loves long flowy dresses undercut hair styles and so on. People talk about her style (not positively) enough that she has some tough skin about it and does not tolerate it. A number of people have recently told her that she and her SIX YEAR OLD daughter look and act mannish!!! What human being in their right mind would walk up to a stranger and her daughter…only to tell them that? Some people are just cruel. But, as my wife says…”Hurt people hurt other people”.
So I now live by the old adage…”What people think of me is none of my business.”.
Thank you again for a wonderfully inspiring piece that came to me at a critical time in my transition.
I agree, what people think of me is none of my business.
It is important to remember that we are all human beings, deserving of kindness and respect. We don’t know what another person is living through.
It is best to do as my mother always taught me, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.”
And if you have some kind words for someone, please open your heart and share them with that person. It may be the only bright moment of their day.