By Hans Ebert

Pulverising the senses with non-stop clutter. That’s how a friend describes it. Life in today’s social media mad driven would where, try as one might to escape the tsunami of information and misinformation and information overload that we certainly don’t even need, it catches up with you. And it’s getting worse. It’s the great plague of our time. It’s what negatively affects us with everything. Yet, many keep going to that well… To the abyss.

Left Facebook and Instagram. Updating both accounts had taken over. Taken over from trying to make my real life relationship with someone go somewhere. It was my compulsive personality running the show. She tried to wean me off it. Go cold turkey. Get out more. Exercise. Sexercise. Cook. But it didn’t work. She walked.

It’s now only Twitter. But “only” has hidden “agitators” in there. Brett Kavanagh. Trump. Fox News. CNN. The usual click bait. Everything that has nothing to do with me. But I still need to click to read the stories. But why? Who cares?

Though loving my music, going to the Rolling Stone Twitter account just to see what might interest me, usually means staying there an hour too long. Reading about artists who are meaningless to me? Watching another Stephen Colbert monologue about Trump? But why?

Enter a new lady. Smart. Understanding. To a point. She cannot understand why I need to listen to a certain racing channel in Australia every morning. Especially when she knows what I think of the main host. An oaf. Intellectual midget. Waste of space. Continue?

On Wednesday morning, having had enough of his voice and what to her is Double Dutch, she toppled over all the bookshelves in the bedroom. Took my phone and deleted the app. There’s a new rule in place. The phone is off whenever we’re together. And we’re now together as a couple. The dating game is over. A good thing?

The phone on Off tactic happened around six relationships ago. But this was only during dinners together. And during sex. Today it’s like going to any Anonymous help group. It’s about not letting in the clutter. Emails. Messaging. WhatsApp? Nothing. Please don’t forward me jokes. Twenty others have sent through the same stuff. Keep that Off button on for pretty much the entire day.

It’s also about keeping away from those in the real world who unload on you. Over and over again. Every day. And always about their problems. How are you doing? Anything they can do for you? No. But listen to them.

Their problems are more important. They’re not. They’re petty. You’re just being used as a relaxant. Some time to kill. Someone to unload crap that’s not exactly going to enhance your life. Far from it. It’s draining. Take two Valium and go to sleep. All those new thoughts running rampant through your head have mentally crippled you again. Time to go somewhere else. But the subconscious can be a dangerous place.

The latest way to get away from all this: A third phone. And with a new number. Only she knows it. It’s the new Escape Clause. The two other iPhones remain off. It’s the next step in losing my religion. And regaining my life. Maybe.

How on earth did so many of us arrive here? Fairly intelligent people. Experienced professionals in and from different industries. How now slaves to technology? But much more than that, the toxicity of pettiness. And petty people. Where did they come from? From gremlins? And you’re engaging with them? About their past? Are you well?

How did we let them in? Yes, social media is the easy answer. The more pertinent answer is losing sight of priorities. Relegating them. By so doing, losing your sense of you. Your purpose in life. This is what has really let the clutter in.

The answer? There’s only one. That door you opened in a misguided sense of generosity? Close it. Forever.

Put those headphones on. And as Dobie Grey sang, just drift away. It’s a wonderful healing process. Music. And it’s free.

#socialmedia #life #keepitreal