25 August ·
We all occasionally suffer from chronic fatigue and lack of motivation. It seems that nowadays, when we are surrounded with all sorts of gadgets and plug-ins, this is the case even more than it used to be, despite the fact that the technology is meant to make our lives more pleasant and easy-going. But does it actually do this?
I have heard someone remark that the smarter mobile phones get, the less we feel the need to be smart. Similarly, all tools, gadgets and plug-ins serve as prosthetic devices: they assist us in one segment of life, while simultaneously making us addicted because they cripple us in another segment. This holds true of literally every segment of human activity from nutrition, through sport, work and entertainment to health. You don’t believe it? Try turning off your TV for a week or not adding salt to your food. Or, perhaps, try not using your car or your mobile phone... or maybe the Internet?
What does this have to do with chronic fatigue, depression and lack of motivation?
Emotions are a basic human need and they arise from our interactions with other people. In the past, people had to associate with other people in order to survive. In other words, an individual depended on the community and this dependence was not a bad thing because it is in our nature, in the same way as our dependence on food, water and sleep. Nowadays, people are increasingly individualistic, putting technology in the place of relationships with other human beings. Typically, such people are highly productive and highly unhappy. Unable to understand that technology cannot give meaning to human existence, they constantly search for newer, more challenging, more complicated and more glamorous technological solutions. And, not unlike drug addicts, they discover that every new solution causes an ever shorter and less effective flash, followed by a new search.
In the words of Zoran Milivojević, if you want to motivate someone, you need to know their values and to think of a way how to rely on these values in presenting the desired activities. For example, if you want to motivate your child to eat broccoli, don’t tell him/her how healthy it is, because the idea of health is not of great value for the child. Rather, provide a role model for whom health has been a crucial factor in achieving success. It is highly unlikely that Novak Djokovic would be successful if he wasn’t healthy, and since your child wants to be as successful as Nole, there’s your recipe for increasing the amount of healthy food your child eats.
Let’s go back to the beginning. In order to get ourselves going at times when we are lacking in motivation and energy, we need to go back to values. What is this value that we keep neglecting, thus making ourselves feel stuck? What is this need that we are not meeting, thus making ourselves feel devastated? What do we need to do and who do we need to spend time with if we want to keep a sincere, childlike smile on our faces?
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