On June 1, 2012 I determined that I would make an effort to change my life, dedicating one month to an adventure, a journey, an experiment. It wouldn’t be anything radical like living in a tent on my front yard or only eating bugs found in my crawl space. But it would be life-changing none-the-less. I determined that the month of June would be different. It wouldn’t be business as usual. I would turn down the “noise” of my life and turn up the silence. I would listen for that Still, Small Voice and in the process, I might find inner peace.
Why did I do this? To still my heart. To calm my mind. To take control over my appetites. To gain a foothold on self-control and in the process, regain a sense of peace.
I did it because, and I’m being honest, I love food. I don’t just like it. I LOVE it. I have the Bible of Cheeses on my bookshelf. I’m looking at it right now. If you pour up a beautiful Pinot Noir and hand me a delicate slice of Morbier I will never leave the table. Throw in a chunk of crusty bread and a bowl of Spanish Olives and I’m in a state of bliss.
I did it because I love TV. Seriously, I would watch movies, sports, news, documentaries, cartoons, YouTube, Hulu, Vudu, Netflix and if truly desperate, The Disney Channel. Occasionally, I just sit and stare at the blank screen. Sometime in early May I calculated that I watched more than 20 hours of TV/video a week. That’s not entertainment, it’s a sickness.
I did it because I love my Smart Phone more than TV and food. I constantly hold the gadget in my hand, check email, update my status, play words with friends, touch base with the weather satellites. Hours and hours or texting, news, weather, games, email, updates. Someone help me.
And in the end, I determined that these distractions were not making me a better person. They were making me neurotic, tuned out, turned off, numbed and dumbed down.
And so, for one month, I gave up some of my favorite foods: All Dairy, meat, caffeine, soda, alcohol and sweets.
I gave up all Media: Radio, TV, News, Movies, Facebook, Email, Internet (I had to continue connections with people because of work and social planning but only checked the email 2-3 times a day).
I gave up the Aps on my phone: I deleted Facebook, Words with Friends, The Indy Channel Weather Authority, Google, Games and much, MUCH more.
And what is the end result? Well, let’s unpack the results in the coming days. Let’s just say that 30 days are over but the Adventure continues and it’s only getting better.