A lot of people are currently experiencing a form of cognitive dissonance with time. Because of lockdown, stay-at-home, and various other quarantine measures, the days all tend to blend together.
We are creatures of habit. For most adults in the United States, at least, their days look something like this:
· Monday-Friday is about structure: Wake-up, morning routine, go to work, go home, evening routine.
· Saturday and Sunday are “off” days. Less structured, activities ranging from fun to chores with wake and sleep times generally less specific.
Through this pattern of behavior, you develop habit. During the working week you likely wake-up and go to sleep during a defined window of time. Work happens.
Many people, as a part of this, live in their pattern.
Now the pattern has been interrupted. Even those who are still working as they were before the pandemic are feeling this. Part of that is because the collective consciousness of society has shifted with the times.
What is collective consciousness?
The collective consciousness is the reality we accept and agree upon. Remember, as Einstein said,
“Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.”
What that means is that reality is what you think it is. That is why people with impressive and incredible visions can create amazing technologies and things that shift the paradigm. In their reality the mere possibility in your reality IS tangible.
Alexander Graham Bell envisioned voice communication via telephone. Henry Ford envisioned every family having a car. Steve Jobs envisioned a computer in every home. All of these have evolved way beyond the visionary’s dreams — but once upon a time, they were intangible fantasies rather than common aspects of reality.
Collective consciousness is made up of tangible and intangible. For the most part, it’s a general, shared sense of seeing the Universe. Hence, why we share a similar vision of how governments function, how money works, names for colors and emotions, and so on.
One person can impact and change the collective consciousness. This can be positive — or it can be negative. On one end of this spectrum, you get Martin Luther King, Jr. and all he did to raise awareness of inequality and civil rights. On the other end of this spectrum, you get Donald Trump and all he is doing to tear that down.
What has collective consciousness got to do with time? Because of the pattern interruption, people are more susceptible to accepting certain collective conscious notions rather than work to change them.
The subconscious mind is a sponge
To take a close look at the collective consciousness in action, scroll through social media. Facebook and Twitter are swamped in information from sources factual and fictional, and people trying to sell both as true.
With the patterns and habits interrupted confusion and chaos gain dominance. A lot of this is because all that information overloads you.
Your mind is a sponge. That sponge is made up of conscious and subconscious. Both are part of the absorption of information.
A sponge will continue to absorb water until it gets cleared. If you leave a wet sponge that’s full in the sink it will get nasty and stinky.
That means you need to wring it out. And that is consciousness versus subconsciousness. Working in the conscious mind is the wringing out of the sponge.
When you wring out the sponge you choose what you will use it for next. Sometimes it will wind up forgotten in the sink for a time — and keep absorbing. That’s how the subconscious retains unwanted information.
If you do not wring it out, you will find your thoughts and feelings in places you don’t desire to be. That, in turn, can lead to actions you take in reaction to that.
Time in this odd, blurred experience here-and-now, during the pandemic, fuels general negativity, uncertainty, and fear. It is causing a ton of anxiety for the uncertain future, depression for lost activities and past choices, and numerous other negative emotions stemming from the overall uncertainty and fear.
Vicious circle, much?
How can you control this?
The first step is to practice mindfulness. By being aware of your thoughts, feelings, and actions, you gain the power to alter them, influence them, change them, and ultimately control them.
Awareness of your mindset/headspace/psyche makes it conscious rather than subconscious. Now you are employing filters that allow you to see what you are taking in and accepting as reality that you might not desire.
Becoming conscious in this way lets you wring out the sponge. Now you can choose where to go and what to do.
If you are finding today to be that odd “Blursday,” being aware of what you are thinking, what and how you are feeling, and intentions behind your actions take center stage. Practicing mindfulness provides you with the ability to create new habits and patterns to overcome cognitive dissonance.
Being aware of your mindset/headspace/psyche allows you to overcome your feeling of disconnect created by these uncertain and unusual times.
It all begins with thought. Time, space, feeling, and action are products of thought first. To quote Einstein again,
“The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking.”
Mindfulness begins with awareness of thought. That will make you aware of your perception of time. When you become aware of your thoughts, you gain awareness of feelings, actions, and all else you can perceive.
That is how you can take control. Change your patterns, your habits, and what day today is will cease to matter.
The now is not a matter of today. Today isn’t as important as we tend to make it. What does matter about now is consciousness, and individual mindset/headspace/psyche. Finding the now in a time of “Blursday” is not a matter of time — but rather one of mindfulness.
Let go of how you think it all works
Holding onto a belief in what reality is too tightly will raise your anxiety. When what you know ceases to be because it has changed, the choice and decision for how you handle it lies with you.
· Resist it and fight it because you want it to be how it was.
· Go with it because it is.
· Resist it and fight it because it is unwanted, and you desire for it to be changed.
· Go with it because it is — but recognize you can change it again.
The pandemic has been showing us that a great deal of the reality we have come to accept is utter bullshit. The world going forward is not going to return to how it was before — because it can’t.
The patterns and habits of the workweek versus weekend are broken for many — but that just means you can choose new patterns and habits.
You are empowered to make the choices and decide whether the disruption of time is a disruption of you. Or — can you instead see this as an opportunity to make new and better choices and decisions?
Once more, quoting Einstein,
“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.”
The name of today isn’t all that important. What choices and decisions you make consciously can and will determine your experiences. When you have experiences you desire for your own life, and you work with possibility and potential, you can influence the collective consciousness.
Every big change starts small. You can help impact the world and where we are going post-pandemic positively. Let go of what day today is and work instead with being conscious of yourself and all you have to give — for you and the world.
You are worthy and deserving of using mindfulness to find and/or create the reality in which you desire to live. When all is said and done you and I matter, whatever day today happens to be.