Based on the question I posed, this is my idea. It’s called Reset.
I am exploring the impacts of big metropolis in the lives of those who live in them. I have observed that there is a constructed, artificial perception of success that leads to a cat and mouse game. People in cities such as London work jobs they may not necessarily enjoy for hours on end just to be able to afford a slightly more expensive pub, and a slightly more instagramable brunch on Sunday mornings. There is a total de-connection between the lives that we live and the lives that we wish we lived, and amidst all of this, we age, we rack up debt and we become ill.
It isn’t easy for everyone to just simply change their career choice or their job. Bills don’t pay themselves and responsibilities don’t just disappear. Practicing mindfulness is fantastic but sometimes that alone isn’t enough, and just leaving everything behind to start again is sometimes just not an option for some.
Currently, I’m aiming to create a organization that I’ve named Reset. The aim of it will be to create an atemporal bubble where people can go for short periods of time, between 2 weeks and a month, with the aim of re-evaluating themselves, their lives, their choices, their jobs and their professional pathways, without having to book a flight to Nepal and becoming a buddhist monk. It will be a self sustainable space, a small community of people looking to find the same answers. The best way I can illustrate this point is by using the example of- if you stick a banker in an environment where banks don’t exist, they will stop worrying about their daily grind, and will have to focus on the real things around them. I want to connect people to themselves, but in a timeframe that allows them to go back to their normal lives (if they wish to).
I also believe that these communities being self sustainable create awareness of what self sustainability is, and how it can easily be achievable.
This is an extract of an email I sent to a professional psychologist, in order to gain some insights on the psychological impacts of this sort of idea. I asked him these questions-
Would just like a professional opinion on mindfulness, do you think it really works? Is it a good idea to cut off people from their lives, almost as a form of shock therapy, to release them from their trap? How could I offer psychological help in this environment? Do you think the wellbeing of someone’s mind is in any way connected to their surroundings? To nature? Do you have any experiences with people that have become stuck in a job that they don’t like, or that they’ve realized they essentially hate their lives? Is there a therapeutical remedy for chronic unhappiness?
I think it would be useful to really consolidate what sort of help I could offer, since sticking people in a gated community like pigs in a pen isn’t exactly useful, or very well thought out for that matter.
I want to reiterate that this isn’t some sort of spiritual retreat, or a retreat at all for that matter. I don’t mean to cut people off from their lives with any purpose, at all. The aim of this whole project is to reset. Reset themselves, like having a cold shower, it doesn’t necessarily have to change anything, people can go back to doing what they did before, just with a refreshened perspective, or they can radically change their lives, that is entirely up to them.
I’m giving the survey a few more days before I close it, I want to get as many answers as possible. So far, 43 people have taken it, if I reached 50 that would be fantastic. The results of the survey, I’m hoping back my theory that people don’t need to want to change their environment i.e where they live, in order to want to change their perspective.
My main aim isn’t environmental, but environmentalism is a huge part of my research, as I genuinely believe (and also backed by evidence), that taking care of our surroundings creates a sense of fulfillment that can’t be equated by any other sort of activity. I still have to find more facts to back this, but we’re on the right track!