“The biggest deception of our digital age may be the lie that says we can be omni-competent, omni-informed, and omni-present. . . . We must choose our absence, our inability, and our ignorance — and choose wisely.”- Kevin DeYoung, Crazy Busy
In Chapter 16 (“Choose Your Absence”) of The Next Right Thing, Emily P. Freeman reiterates that you definitely need time and space to implement those things that matter. Or finally figure out what they are.
Also, and important quality to possess is the ability to listen well – to be a person of presence. Furthermore, as a person of presence, you possess the ability to pay attention to what is happening:
- around you – both in the place you live and among the other people who also live there
- within you – but you can’t be present to everything all the time
Yet, Emily observes, one way to cultivate presence actually sounds counterintuitive. You cultivate presence by your absence. However, the author explains:
“Not your absence from people or responsibility, but absence from the things that are keeping you from your people and your responsibilities. There’s one thing in particular that may be causing you no small amount of stress and distraction. What is it? It’s called opportunity. . . . However opportunities come, they present an invitation for you to do something you didn’t plan or expect.”
But, when you’re unclear or unsure of your own calling, saying yes to opportunities often serves as your default response. Over time, though, these reactionary yeses can take their toll. As a result, they can represent the phantom cause of decision fatigue as well as a lack of true presence in your life.
Finally, Emily points out, not all ideas are great simple because someone presents an idea as great. Not all opportunities, the author notes, carry equal weight. And when we leave things clouded in ambiguity, they appear great. Therefore, we need to get down to details in order to see the truth of things.
Today’s question: What do you believe represents the greatest deception of our digital age? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “Living attentive and paying attention”