by Mia Von Scha, Transformational Coach, motivational speaker, children’s author, student to two Zen Masters (aka kids), avid cloud watcher and lover of life.
These power outages can really get one down. I know. I’ve done my fair share of complaining. And we may feel justified in our complaints: we can’t warm our babies’ bottles, we can’t pop onto the Internet to help a kid with a project, we can’t finish the dinner or get the washing done. Not to mention the financial implications of hours where you or your staff are not being productive.
We have a right to have a bit of a moan. But thinking negatively can really drain your energy!
I felt I needed a bit of a pick me up on this particular subject so a friend and I made a list of 100 benefits to the rolling blackouts. We thought we’d share it with you in the hopes that it will light up your day as much as it did ours.
1. Spend less time on devices (We don’t need to plan a “no technology day” anymore)
2. Spend more time connecting with family and friends
3. Less noise pollution
4. Less light pollution
5. It’s atmospheric (there’s nothing like candlelight to make a scene beautiful)
6. Play games instead of watching TV (snakes & ladders, Monopoly, charades etc.)
7. Have more conversations
8. Go to sleep earlier (a healthier option for most of us)
9. Wake up earlier and get more out of the day
10. Take a break from working
11. Brings people together
12. It gives us something to talk about
13. Compels us to move towards alternative power sources
14. There is a lot of research being done into sustainable power
15. We use less electricity – reserving Earth’s resources
16. When we have power we get more work done
17. We learn to plan ahead and have contingency plans
18. Tell stories – giving our kids the cultural background of the stories we grew up with
19. Tell our kids our life stories and family history
20. It’s like camping!
21. Teaches us to toughen up a bit
22. Pulls us back to the simplicity of life
23. Get back to the “olden days”
24. More family time
25. More opportunity to talk to and connect with your partner
26. Read books and give our kids a love of reading
27. Make shadow puppets
28. Do crosswords and Sudoku and exercise our brains a bit
29. Getting back to the REAL stuff of life
30. Put the focus back on what is important
31. Teaches us to be creative
32. Teaches us to be resourceful
33. Stop wasting time on social media
34. Work on areas of your life you don’t take time for due to work & distractions
35. Time to sort your cupboards etc.
36. Gratitude for having electricity in the first place (and running water)
37. Appreciate hot water
38. Appreciate having a dishwasher, phone, TV, computer, etc.
39. Back to reality – all human beings are equal
40. Breaks down class differences
41. Listening to good audiobooks / music in traffic
42. Time to chat in the car
43. Learn patience
44. Learn something in the car – take an audio course
45. Listen to an entire book while sitting in traffic (catch up on reading time)
46. Improve your career / finances / etc. in the traffic (via audio programs)
47. Learn a new language in the car
48. Learn to accept the present moment as it is ‘cos there’s nothing you can do about it!
49. Be prepared – have your coffee, audiobooks etc. ready to settle in
50. Learn to prepare your mind for delays
51. Get over the “in a hurry” mindset
52. Slow down
53. Learn to leave early and take it easy
54. Teaches kids to be ok with the dark
55. Learn to budget (making less money due to blackouts)
56. Simplify financially
57. Making a plan BEFORE the coal all runs out
58. Creating new industries
59. Cash to be made in generators, solar power etc.
60. Learn to handle financial ups and downs
61. Switching to energy efficient bulbs etc.
62. Makes us very conscious of energy consumption
63. Save electricity – only use washing machines, dishwashers etc. when full
64. Fulfills our human psychological needs:
65. Provides us with certainty (we KNOW the lights will be out at some point!
66. Provides us with variety (more creative in how we spend our time)
67. Provides us with significance (looking after our kids in the dark)
68. Provides us with love and connection (spending more quality time together)
69. Growth (reading, learning, talking to each other)
70. Contribution (becoming more aware of what people with no electricity permanently have to go through); teaching us empathy.
71. Gives us more of a Spiritual connection – time to pray, meditate, connect with source
72. Mentally – it removes the problem of too many options that deaden the mind – like too many TV channels making us spoiled for choice
73. Financially it makes us more creative and focused on budgeting, saving and investing
74. Shops closed means we spend less
75. Less time spent on shopping
76. Helps us to be more family oriented
77. Socially we may go out more and so connect with people we love more, or, we may go out less, therefore saving on petrol, take-out bills, etc.
78. Physically, we are given a break from the constant electromagnetic field around us
79. In our careers – it gives us the opportunity to step back from the chaos and rethink strategy and the bigger picture
80. We can see the stars more clearly at night
81. We can get creative with glow-in-the-dark paints and toys
82. We can have fun decorating with solar lanterns
83. We can play with sparklers
84. We have the opportunity to become more inward focused
85. There are less distractions
86. We can connect with ourselves and our feelings
87. We have the opportunity to face our fears
88. Play music, sing
89. Connect with your neighbours – sharing information and checking up on each other
90. Eating take-out – having a break from cooking
91. Eating more raw foods and all the health benefits of that
92. Not bathing / showering / washing dishes – save on water
93. More emphasis on breast feeding (can’t warm up bottles) – healthier for our babies
94. Kids learn to sleep without their night lights – better for overall sleep and health
95. Less noise when the kids go to bed
96. Kids less stimulated by TV / computer games before bed
97. Kids and teens learning real communication skills (not just text-based interactions)
98. We’re forced to become more solution-based than problem-based
99. We’re having to find ways to deal with the additional stresses and frustrations – tools that will help us in other areas of life
100. We’re learning to find benefit in adverse situations which gives us a better overall approach to life