The Super Saturated Brain Of Yours Truly
This has been coming on slowly. Maybe over the last two decades. Like some weird little glacier building in my head. It’s clogging up the works.
Maybe it’s the world. Maybe it’s the frenetic pace that we are all setting for ourselves to move this mountain or dig that tunnel or blow up that edifice. I’m not exactly sure.
I only know that I feel saturated. I have too much info in my head all the time. And these days in particular, I have to work really hard to separate the bullshit from the true stuff. I have to think extra hard to stay coherent.
There’s nothing physically wrong with me. I’m fine. Whatever travels from my brain to my fingers and onto this screen usually makes some sort of sense. It’s the part just before that that is a mass of chaos.
I am always amazed when a real thought slips out. It’s not that there aren’t enough of them. No. That’s not it. It’s the jumble that produces them that’s the real bother. And the amount of energy it takes to grab them all in one piece.
We are all consuming data from many different media at an abnormal rate. And we have been for quite a while. We are all busy sorting through that data and trying to make sense of it all. And that’s the problem.
Because most of it simply doesn’t make sense. And we keep trying to make it make sense. Pretty much all of the geo-political world as we know it doesn’t make sense. There are more lies and questionable truths being told on a minute to minute basis than our brains are capable of processing.
Is it any wonder we are all having trouble seeing both sides of an issue?. It is any wonder that we pick a side and just stay there? Because it’s just too much work to open up the brain to other possibilities.
I try to look at the world and see it for what it really is and it fucks me up because there is so much confusion and chaos out there that I’m really afraid that if I totally open my mind to it, it will drive me insane.
And if you are a thinker and a doer, like so many of us are, you have to feel pretty much the same way.
I’m afraid of information overload driving me crazy. Tilting my brain. Kicking it too hard in the wrong place and causing it to shut down and scream No More…That’s Enough!
And so I close up the intake valve, and I play with the settings to make sure that the right amount of data is flowing in…you know, just enough to keep me informed and reflective, but not enough to make me feel confused.
But then, sometimes that rationing can make you feel like you are perhaps missing something, so you open the valve a little bit more and you get a little rush of chaos. And then a little bit more and a little more rush.
Pretty soon you’re all fucked up again and scrambling to close the damn valve.
Sometimes I envy people who are really simple-minded. Whose valves, for reasons too numerous to mention, are always nearly closed. They have this marvellous ability to keep a lot of the bullshit out. They are probably much happier, in their own way, than many of us who hunger and thirst for knowledge with valves wide open and sucking up every bit of data we can find.
Today I was mindlessly scrolling down one of the walls on one of the social media sites I frequent, I can’t even remember which one, and it hit me.
There was just so much stuff floating around in my head that there wasn’t room for anything else.
No room. Not one byte. I was filled up.
So I stopped. I put the computer to sleep and went outside. I sat down in one of my comfy Muskoka chairs and looked up at the sky. And all I could think was…I just keep fucking doing this to myself.
I keep my brain so full that it’s blocked the exits and I can’t really form a rational thought sometimes.
It passes quickly. Or not. I’m not sure. But it passes all the same.
Tonight, this is what leaked out. I consider it to be a warning. Too much data is like too much chocolate cake or too many cookies.
Not a good thing.
I need to figure out how to control this. Or not even so much that, but how to get better at controlling it, because everything you have just read is disturbing to me. It’s disturbing that this is what I am thinking about. That this is an issue for me.
Maybe there is no solution. Maybe I just have to take a few steps back from time to time. Maybe we all do. I don’t know for sure. It’s just that I have always prided myself on being a bit of a comfort freak and all this ennui and regularly recurring data overload runs counter to my preferred state of being.
If you got this, then you are a lot like me. That’s not a bad thing. But if I were you, I’d consider it a warning too.
I could go on about this. I could write about this for quite a while. But all that would do is break down the basics a little bit more and leave us all in a state of super-saturation. So I will stop. Now.
Jim Murray is an experienced advertising and marketing professional. He has run his own business (Onwords & Upwords), since 1989 after a 20 year career as a senior creative person in major Canadian & international advertising agencies. He is a communication strategist, writer, art director, broadcast producer, mildly opinionated op/ed blogger & beBee Brand Ambassador.
Jim lives in St Catharines Ontario and is a partner at Bullet Proof Consulting. www.bulletproofconsulting.ca
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