Life seems to be speeding up. We live in the ubiquitous Information Age. Technology is booming and advancing at lightning speeds, and we feel like we are advancing just as quickly. If you are not feeling this way, my guess is that you are living in the jungle unplugging somewhere.
As great as it is living in this Information Age, it also has some not so fun side effects. The Information Age has affected how we interact with each other and connect in our social world. We are social beings and we thrive on connection. Face-to-face time is decreasing. Now, we connect in a variety of virtual ways. Sometimes, we connect virtually non-stop through various mediums, rarely communicating in person. If you have kids, and especially teenagers, you will likely understand this point very poignantly.
The advancement of technology has a big impact on our internal and external worlds. As things are made easier and information is more accessible, the sheer amount of this information can feel rather overwhelming and cause internal chaos, which can manifest in external chaos. Just think how you feel internally when you are overwhelmed and you are probably very stressed and moody, but to keep up with the all the changes going on around and to connect in the modern world, you push your feelings down and keep on trucking. When we finally have a minute to reflect or have a conversation with our kids, it may be rather biting and negative.
Despite the speed in which we are evolving in this Information Age, we do have choices where we can find the seemingly intangible balance of growing and enjoying what we are and have, and enjoying our social connections, including family connections, in this very moment without jumping to the next moment and not even realizing where we just came from in the haste to move forward.
Busyness is a choice. We have the gift of proactive intention using our willpower and creativity (imagination) to create the life we desire. Many of us get lost in the unimportant busyness of what we have created in our lives and speed through our years wondering why we never did this or that for our children or ourselves. Figuring out what is important and non-important busyness is a skill. It is not something we are inherently born with and know automatically when we grow up. We must learn boundaries and how to classify and sort out the things in our lives that will be pivotal to help us evolve with essential worldly values at our center – love, compassion, and equal opportunity.
Sometimes it takes a trip back to the old ways, adding a few modern twists of course, of doing things to really progress forward successfully in the modern Information Age. Many of us assert we are so busy we just do not have time to eat dinner together anymore. Some of us may even be thinking that dinner with our families when we were kids was not such a pleasant experience. Perhaps you had dinner together, but you sat together with your dinner on a tray and watched the television or you ate in suffocating silence where there were many unspoken emotions that created an energy so stiff you could cut through it with your utensils. So, if that is you, heck yeah, why not fill dinner time with more busyness instead of replicating that torturous cycle.
If you are feeling deeply disconnected to yourself, your family – those immediate and afar– or your friends, then take note.
I invite you to the modern Dinner Conversations Unplugged. It is a vital tool for just about everything of value in our lives in the modern world. When we sit together at dinner with our family and or/friends we are in an act of Life Ceremony (For more information on Life Ceremony and exciting nourishment for your brain click on the following link – https://www.solsenseyoga.com/2014/04/30/life-ceremony/). We are intentionally choosing to slow down and unplug to tune in to a higher notion of our family and ourselves.
At dinner, we come together, not just as a family, but we are in an act of Life Ceremony that is symbolic to our basic human connection to other humans and to Divine Love or God (or fill in the blank or close it up).
Food is our nourishment and sustenance. It is how we evolve or die. Spiritually speaking, food connects us to our higher power in ways that ground us, heal us, and provide energy to us to move forward in the values I mentioned above – love, compassion, and equality of opportunity. And, when we do partake in a dinner feast together, we embody the spirit of connection to our fellow human brothers and sisters, not just metaphorically, but even with the food we eat from local to global commerce in food agriculture.
Dinner Conversations Unplugged has the potential to be a positive life-transforming force for our kids and for our families in our modern world. Why? Because not only does it foster secure attachment for the healthy development of our kids (mentally, emotionally, and physically), but it also fosters secure attachment for adults, and it connects us to the larger family outside of ourselves – physically and spiritually. These are all important ingredients to live a balanced and successful life.
Dinner Conversations Unplugged is pretty simple. Take at least one night a week (the more the better!) and dedicate time to eating with your family (or friends or both) without phones and computer interruptions, no TV, and sit around the table and eat a healthy meal together. What a bonus too to make the time to create a dinner together and enjoy it together. This next part is very important and must not be skipped. Say a prayer before you eat together, or meditate together, or take a few mindful breaths together. These are tools that set our intention for our dinner time experience.
Proactive intention is key to leading a joyful and successful life. What better way to model that for our kids than to do so together while enjoying a communal meal.
Dinner Conversations Unplugged is a safe place zone. That means there is no right or wrong answer or topics to discuss and generally speaking, we leave the discipline issues out of dinner (of course leaving space to implement appropriate dining manners).
This is strictly a time to connect just as we are and share how we created ourselves as the day unfolded itself to us. It is a time for encouragement, guidance and empowerment that is in line with the intention we set for the tenor of the dinner. It is a time to release, let go, and reconnect. It is our spiritual soul food that will nourish us once we move back to the busyness of our Information Age.
Take your soul food, Dinner Conversations Unplugged, and give yourself and your family the gift of nourishment in mind, body, and heart.
Om Shanti Om ~ Athea
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