My first video post. YAY!
I’ve been wanting to do one of these for a long time, but they’ve never been good enough. The lighting was wrong. The sound was bad. I said “Um” too much or wouldn’t look at the camera.
Today, I’m just doing it and putting it out there. I have to start somewhere.
The video is just shy of 10 minutes and safe for work. If you’d like to see more of these, please let me know.
Daniel Edlen says
The tools, the habits, the momentum do not imprison us. We imprison us. To remember that in each moment we have the choice, always, is vital to serve the past and the future. We live our Lives to serve ourselves, God, the Universe, however you conceive of what surrounds us, includes us, and to do so, we need to remember to listen to our guts or whatever feedback mechanism works to let that surrounding force flow through us. I’m thinking of us all as prophets, mediums, vessels of Life. Those entrapments you discuss are not real, really. They are part of our story, a story that can change. That we can change.
I draw this from Alan Watts, don Miguel Ruiz, Douglas Adams, Hugh MacLeod, my father, and many many other prophets.
It is wonderful to see you in video. Keep using the tool, despite glitches with the laptop.
Great to see you, Charlie!
Also really great to hear your thoughts on this. Watching the Iran/Twitter hype bursting through the web world, I asked these same questions. I think “the instant” can be valuable for certain purposes, but we shouldn’t take that to mean that we need it on all the time.
I don’t think I’ll fully turn off the instant, but I am making a point of being more conscious about how and why I use it.
I was getting into a similar state of mind, in wanting to take a break from the internet. I was just about to do it, but I procrastinated and was surfing twitter and saw zen habbits. I haven’t visited the site in months, and i went there, and found your latest, which lead me to your site. Glad to have found it. Great Quality Content. With that, i’m glad that I didn’t yet “Turn The Instant ____” off just yet. That leads me to some constructive suggestions to your vlog. I realize that you’re doing a good job expressing why turning the instant off is important, but it leaves me wondering, “well in what context is it good to turn it off, and when it’s not”. I guess everyone is unique and they’ll just have to find their own answer to that, but i think it would be a good follow up to include your experience in balancing when to be on, and when to be off. Other than that, your video presence is quite satisfactory and you know it’ll just get better each time.
Hope F. says
Very thought provoking. You should definitely do more of these!
Yay for your first video blog. It was so, so, SO great to see your humanity matching the voice I feel like I know so well. Andrea came home while I was watching you and I said, “Look honey, it’s Charlie!” (big happy grins)
On um’s and the rest of your vlog’s content – it’s funny becuz I was just rapped over the head by my astro mentor this week telling me I need to cut out my “ya know’s.” He was referencing that if I want to become a serious broadcaster, I need to……… and I got lost in thought wondering if that’s what I wanted or intend when I’m on BTR. If I’m Rachel Maddow, I would definitely consider the advice. However, I’m Mynde doing her thang which gets to be full of “ya know’s” and “um’s” and ALL it’s beautiful imperfections, ya know? :oD
I like Sox or Socks. I like that the world map, in the background, in both forward and backward directions. Kind of a subtle reinforcement. I like that despite your self consciousness, your content is powerful, enjoyable, and (as always) thought-provoking.
Meditating, is a conscious choice, to slow thinking down and create/anchor for ourselves that we are NOT our thoughts. And your point is well taken, that mostly the external world offers us over stimulus of our thinking process, keeping us locked into more thinking.
When we were in Greece last spring, I sat and watched an old man smoke a cigarette and drink a cup of coffee. It took him two hours! I was amazed at how he intentionally used his time to relax and go slowly. He reminded me how to enjoy something, why I wanted vacation. And I decided I wanted to take going slowly with me, back into the rest of my life after our vacation. When I am present, in the Now, everything becomes more enjoyable.
Even watching your um’s and listening to my ya know’s.
Really liked the video! I thought a nearly 10 minute video would be too long to hold my attention (ironic, yes?), but you made it work – even with the technical difficulties. Very much appreciated you sharing some of your own personal challenges with “turning off the instant.”
Two thoughts to add to the conversation:
1) Time seems akin in some ways to closet space – both are finite, and even when you’re successful in reclaiming some useful portion of either, you have to remain vigilant that something seemingly urgent (or bright and shiny) doesn’t fill up this newly reclaimed space.
2) Several faith traditions hold up the concept of Sabbath as a way to regularly and intentionally disengage from the noise of everyday life. Even without its spiritual dimensions – if that’s not your thing – I think honoring the concept of Sabbath can be an important part of the time reclamation process.
Thanks for the video!
Charlie, YAY!! I’m thrilled that you vlogged this. And I, for one, kind of appreciate the “ums” and “roughness.” I don’t expect bloggers to be Rachel Maddow (as Mynde compared). I expect them to be real people with real voices, which often include some ums and ya knows and pauses and wait-let-me-start-that-sentence-over-agains. That’s what I’d expect if I was having a conversation with you, which is how I like vlogs to feel. Less polish, more real.
Also (and apropos of nothing at all), I think you look a lot like Michael Yo, who makes frequent appearances on one of my favorite guilty pleasure shows Chelsea Lately.
Yes! to more videos (though I also don’t want to lose your writing entirely because I really do enjoy that too), cats and ums and rough edits and all. I dig it.
@Daniel: You’re absolutely right that we imprison ourselves. The reality is that, as things have become easier, the self-discipline required to not follow the easy route has become more needed. And it’s all within our power to change, but to change it, we have to be aware that it’s there.
@Zoe: If you’re making conscious choices about the instant, then my work is done here. :p
In the part of the “good stuff” that was lost when my laptop decided to stop recording, I talked about it not being the point to shut it off all the time, but rather to be aware of when you’re plugged in and when you’re not. The conscious choices bit sums that up nicely – thank you.
@Cjay: You’re question re: “well in what context is it good to turn it off, and when it’s not” is aptly put, and I think I’ll respond via video. Stay tuned!
@Mynde: I was wondering who would comment on the world map. :p
I really appreciate you honoring the good parts of the video; it’s quite encouraging.
When we went to Greece, we noticed the same thing. People took their time, in a very active way. We tried to do the same, and it worked for a while – and then the instant came back in.
The trouble with video is that it’s hard to be as expressive about the double play of words. Instant has two connotations – the urgency bit, but also the presence bit. I meant the urgency connotation, but I think people picked up on it.
I think the video response to this will be “Choosing the Now,” as it plays with the dichotomy of “Shut Off the Instant.” This is just too much fun, y’know?
@Craig: I was worried that it’d be too long myself. Phew – thanks for the encouragement on that front.
I’ve been playing with the word sacred to account for the cultural influences of the Sabbath. Why the Sabbath is so sacred is because it does exactly as you say – it helps us reclaim time and ourselves. Regardless of our spiritual beliefs, we all need some time that is sacred – honored – in that way. My posts about Unplugged Weekends speak to that in a secular way, but it’s the same principle at heart.
Thanks for adding this to the discussion.
@Marissa: Thanks for commenting about your preference for the authenticity of vlogs – I feel the same way, but was too close and too scared to do anything about it.
And the last bit about Michael Yo has inspired a fun post. Stay tuned!
I think you’re on to something here with the word sacred. It’s a good bridge word – one that different groups of people (the formally religious, those who consider themselves spiritual but not religious, and those who don’t necessarily identify with any particular spiritual elements of personal development, for example) all find accessible while retaining its essential meaning. Keep up the good work!
PS The picture post was a lot of fun!
Although the video was a bit rough, I believe this made those who watched it, understand that you are human. Not just some inanimate object phishing out schemes.
Mistakes are inevitable.
I agree with the philosophy of “turning the instant off.”
We are consumed in an overload of information.
We must commit to only the necessities and kill all of the rest.
Keep making videos, Will