There was a day, there was a dial, and it went click…and presto! Either what you were using worked, or it didn’t.

I am fond of spouting this off when I am frustrated by today’s technologies and the myriad of things I have learned to navigate in the last 20 to 30 years. 

Certain aspects of the past offered a simpler time. A time without so many choices. A time where there was one phone company, four or five major airlines or banks, and only three or four television stations. Fewer options.

We are living in a world with too many choices. Too many means to the same end. The television is a great example. I mean seriously…? Apple TV, Roku, Netflix, Hulu, cable, YouTube, Starz, HBO, ESPN…on and on and on. Each choice requiring its own login account, password, and fee. Yes the fee’s for every little thing. Hidden fees, monthly fees, bundled fees, it’s a lot of choice, and a lot of expense which adds up.

Yes, I’m over 60 and damn proud of it. I have had to climb a huge learning curve as has everyone of my generation. Some adapt, some give up, some are relaying on the kindness of strangers. I say give us a break for having paddled our way up this stream at all.

I still have cable and a big ole’ TV in a cabinet. I have been in my house since 1987…I started watching TV in the house before internet was even a thing. Recently our cable company lost their contract with whoever now controls NBC. So we, as consumers, lost that network. The cable company is very sorry, but they can’t give us NBC as it would raise our bills astronomically. Hey, thanks for watching out for us!

My kids installed Roku onto my TV awhile back…so I can watch NBC on Hulu but not in real time. I have adapted to this after spending a fair amount of energy creating the account, paying for it, downloading, logging in and an anti-climatic presto…my show came on…and my dinner was cold.

There was a day, there was a dial. It went click and voila.

So many choices has fragmented our attention spans. It has created a culture of indecision riddled with commitment issues. If there is too much to choose from on the banquet table we often simply don’t make any choice at all. Or we overload our plates and get sick to our stomach.

We get stressed. Too many choices can usher in anxiety.

It’s also killing off certain choices. Like small businesses run by real people with real dreams. Personal, and unique choices, crafted from someones heart, are often mowed down. By vast and glittering, corporate big box choices, oozing shiny convenience. On top of the cryptic challenges of the past years pandemic; small businesses are tolling a death bell.

In my industry, due to the pandemic, we lost the ability to teach group classes. Enter Peloton and online wizardry. I’m glad it’s a thing, as it maintained the health of millions of souls, but honestly we can’t compete. Not with the big budgets and far reach of corporate America. Not even close.

However, what online can’t give you is authentic community. It’s slick, but sterile. People need people, and I’m praying we can get back to that. Human, heart to heart, soul to soul connection, with a hug.

I would rather give my time and money to choices offered through someones heart vision. Give me the small boutique with three racks of sweaters over the warehouse full of thousands any day. It feels like a purer exchange to me. It brightens someones’s day, it fuels their dream.

Simplify by streamlining your choices. Choose mindfully, wisely, try not to get overwhelmed and distracted by the dizzy array. Keep your focus on the ends, not so much the complicated means, & viola your show will come on and your dinner won’t be cold.