Blocking Out The World
The world is filled with things we cannot control. We put ourselves out there, aware of the risk that bad things might happen, just to give ourselves the opportunity for good things to happen. We hope for the best and try to avoid the undesirable vagaries of nature. But when we depend on people, careers, or events in our lives, we are opening ourselves to possibilities we cannot foresee.
Although it is necessary to confront the randomness of the outside world most of the time in order to participate in socialized life, there are moments where we eliminate almost all chance of disappointment and wrap ourselves in the protection of our own mind.
Sinking into your subconscious is the subject of one of my other writings; what I emphasize here is specifically facilitating a lack of connection with the outside world. It requires active thinking to recognize thoughts that are tied to the outside world, since those thoughts are all classified as “normal:” I wonder if my mom is mad at me. I hope I got an ‘A’ on that test. It would be great if I met someone at tonight’s party. But separating out thoughts that are bound to circumstances you can’t control can be crucial.
When things are going well for a day, a week, or a moment, it doesn’t seem necessary to retreat from the outside world. But when things are going poorly, all you want to do is get away from the source of the negativity. It is important to know how to do that. There are already things that are built into your life that are constant and very much under your control. Use those things to comfort yourself. Savor them.
When I was taking midterms in college, I used to relish the few moments after I got under my bed covers but before I went to sleep. I often found myself smiling involuntarily the moment my weight sank into the mattress. Shuffling off the stress of the day and slipping into my own personal world felt incredible. Even now, I sometimes think to myself how much I enjoy those last conscious moments, and how it’s too bad they’re so close to sleep as to render themselves blurry in my memory.
Other ways I block out the world temporarily are through writing, video games, and music. The last is probably the most common way people temporarily secede from the world. And in a way, all art is a form of escape – an escape that is so fundamental to human living that every culture from every time period has participated in it.
It is important to vivify your mental alone-time, to recognize and seize upon it. The respite you’ll receive from blocking out the world once in a while could sweeten your life experience.
Evan Bailyn is a serial entrepreneur, search engine and social media expert, celebrated author and child advocate. His company, First Page Sage, is a leader in search engine optimization and social media marketing - vastly increasing business for its clients through high SEO rankings, targeted Facebook advertising and viral videos. Evan is also the founder of the Evan Bailyn Foundation, a foundation dedicated to teaching emotional awareness to children and adults.