Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Bliss and Bravery

Written by Chloe

I'm not too late for confessional, am I? Because our Sundays have been taken over by football. And our evenings have included a lot of television. And both of those have sometimes meant a laptop or smartphone out at the same time. Electronics have outnumbered the people in the room.

The truth is, I have a really hard time with being away from the distraction of media.

We've talked a lot in this space of 'unplugging.' But the difficulty in this is that it requires us to plug in, to completely engage in real life. And engaging in what you really love without distraction is weird. Counter-cultural, even.

When my family is unplugged I have nothing to keep me from facing our reality.

My husband has dreams that are bigger than a 9-to-5 job.
My political views make me uncomfortable with the Big Bank that holds our mortgage.
I often choose to shop a large retailer instead of a mom-n-pop.
I spend a lot more time reading about other people pursuing their goals than I do actually working toward my own.

Unplugging makes me uncomfortable because I long for a life completely different from the one I find myself leading.

“If you follow your bliss, you put yourself on a kind of track that has been there all the while, waiting for you, and the life that you ought to be living is the one you are living. Wherever you are—if you are following your bliss, you are enjoying that refreshment, that life within you, all the time.” -Joseph Campbell

This late fall and early winter, you’ll find me attempting to follow my bliss:
  • I am turning off the computer and lowering our grocery budget.
  • I am spending less time on blogs and more time in books.
  • I am finally reading my camera’s manual.

Those sound so exciting to me. Life is easier in bullet points, I think. But the heart of the matter is that those bullet points are paving the way for the really hard Unplugged Reckoning at our house.

By limiting my aimless online time, I am hoping to work out the logistics of a big move. From the suburbs to a rural lot. From a mortgage with a company I loathe to a very small rent check that we pay to a man who lives in our community. Half of our current square footage. Four times the flexibility in our monthly budget.

This move, one that we already know some of our closest friends and family do not understand, will require me to be the bravest I have ever been. And this bravery has been brought on by unplugging from normal and plugging in to my bliss.

How could taking Unplugged time help you to follow your bliss?

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