As a Clinical Psychologist, my journey into the concept of “artificial wellbeing” has been one of deep exploration and revelation. In a world driven by technological advancements and instant gratification, it has become evident that many of us are living lives that revolve around artificial comforts and superficial connections. The term “artificial wellbeing” encapsulates this phenomenon, and it has become my mission to shed light on its implications and advocate for a shift towards authentic living.
Examples of Artificial Wellbeing:
1. Social Media Detachment: Social media platforms have become an integral part of our daily routines. While they offer various benefits, such as connecting with distant friends and staying updated on current events, they can also be a source of anxiety and envy. The constant comparison to carefully curated online personas often detracts from genuine connections and self-acceptance.
2. Virtual Relationships: Online dating, video calls, and virtual gatherings have made it convenient to connect with others, but they can lack the depth and intimacy of face-to-face interactions. While these tools bridge physical distances, they may not wholly fulfill our emotional needs for genuine human connection.
3. Digital Nomadism: The rise of remote work and digital nomadism enables people to work from anywhere in the world. While this newfound freedom offers exciting opportunities, it can lead to disconnection from local communities and a lack of rootedness, resulting in a superficial sense of belonging.
4. Artificial Environments: The prevalence of air conditioning, artificial lighting, and virtual reality experiences has disconnected us from the natural world. Spending excessive time indoors and away from nature can have adverse effects on our mental and physical health, leading to feelings of isolation and restlessness.
Moving Towards Authentic Living:
1. Mindful Technology Use: Instead of mindlessly scrolling through social media, strive for purposeful and limited use. Allocate specific times for engaging with digital platforms, ensuring they do not overshadow meaningful real-life experiences.
2. Prioritize Face-to-Face Interactions: While virtual connections have their place, prioritizing in-person interactions fosters deeper relationships and emotional connections. Make an effort to spend quality time with friends, family, and colleagues whenever possible.
3. Reconnect with Nature: Incorporate nature into your daily life by spending time outdoors, whether it’s going for a walk, practicing outdoor exercises, or enjoying a picnic in the park. Reconnecting with nature can bring a sense of calm and fulfilment that artificial environments cannot replicate.
4. Embrace Slow Living: Embrace the concept of slow living, which emphasizes being present in the moment, cultivating genuine connections, and appreciating the simple pleasures of life. Avoid rushing through experiences and allow yourself to savour the beauty of authenticity.
5. Pursue Your Passions: Engage in hobbies and activities that genuinely interest you. Authentic living involves being true to your passions and interests, rather than succumbing to societal pressures or the pursuit of artificial validation.
In conclusion, while artificial wellbeing may provide temporary comfort and convenience, it often leaves us feeling unfulfilled and disconnected from ourselves and others. To lead a truly satisfying and meaningful life, it is vital to recognize the significance of authentic living. By prioritizing real connections, embracing nature, and pursuing our passions, we can break free from the chains of artificial living and experience genuine wellbeing and contentment.