BesserFernsehen, Medien, Musik, Inspiration & Wellbeing

10 inspiring thoughts & videos for the Holidays

I’m a big fan of the little inspiration for in between – sometimes a short video clip, a great picture or quote can help us somewhat get over the well-known monotony of everyday life. A little break, a short moment of surprise & relaxation … Of course we often lack time & notion to search in the various platforms with millions of videos. I therefore gladly point at 10 special video clips & illustrations for the Holidays which – each in its own way – mean something to me:

1. WEB OF LIFE
2. GRATITUDE
3. FALL OF LIFE
4. SENTENCE OF LIFE
5. ANNUAL CLOCK
6. JOY RIDE
7. MEMORIES
8. POETRY & LIFE
9. PURE & SIMPLE
10. HERE & NOW

More on that in a minute. My private (Swiss) site
www.besser-fernsehen.ch
by the way offers a lot more inspiring video clips on many different subjects (right column, all the way down – behind German titles you mostly find English videos).

„Creativity is the residue of time wasted“, said Albert Einstein. Sometimes it‘s wisely wasted …


1. WEB OF LIFE

I start with one of the most beautiful short video clips there is – at least for me. Because it illustrates so wonderfully what gets lost so often in everyday life: That we all form a greater whole. One big worldwide „web of life“ – worldwide & beyond. That we all depend on each other, people on people, people on animals & plants, ultimately everybody on everbody. In the long run we can only exist hand in hand, with each other and not against each other. Humiliation & exploitation ultimately are dead-end streets.

We are one big family – scientifically very easy to retrace: Go back maximally 50 generations – and you are related to everybody on this planet. In your own environment, you typically have to go back only a couple of generations.

Video (1 minute)
We are all connected
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JsViKFU63i4&feature=player_detailpage

Illustration (via google.com)
Web of life
https://twitter.com/AVSchaffner/status/413238372820201472/photo/1


2. GRATITUDE

Ralph Waldo Emerson once said that in order to achieve contentment, one should "cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes along.“ More & more people nowadays cultivate an „attitude of gratitude“ to improve their well-being. Research is increasingly discovering that expressing thanks can lead to a healthier, happier and less-stressed lifestyle. And to even more reasons to be grateful for.

Thankful people know they didn't get to where they are today all by themselves – and they don’t forget to spend time with those who matter most to them. Gratitude helps us connect to other people, it strengthens relationships, and relationships are the strongest predictors of happiness and coping with stress. Show the important people in your life what they really mean to you. Tell them about the fireworks that go off when they smile – as the Pretenders put it so lovely a long time ago …

Video (6 minutes)
Gratitude
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=nj2ofrX7jAk

Illustration (via oprah.com)
Thanks
https://twitter.com/AVSchaffner/status/412114369632149504/photo/1


3. FALL OF LIFE

Nothing new, nothing dramatic – just the everyday wear & tear: We work our butt off to become & be someone, to represent something. Half of today’s life is a stage, a showroom, a goldfish bowl.

Working on our image, i.e. „personal branding“ gets more & more important, if not essential in the modern society. „Brand you!“ is the modern battle call, show who you are and how you differ from the crowd. As a person and as a „brand“. As employee in the supermarket, in the advertising business or in financial services, as start-up entrepreneur, on a media stage or wherever. Many people seem to be some kind of actors in their life. And have completely pushed aside the fact that our self-perception ultimately is nothing but an illusion. So often a painful illusion.

We forget about being ourselves, being a voice, not an echo. We forget to express – we are too busy to impress.

Video (2 minutes)
In the fall
http://vimeo.com/27582815

Illustration (via 9gag.com)
Daily grind
https://twitter.com/AVSchaffner/status/412480288741003264/photo/1


4. SENTENCE OF LIFE

The „sentence of life“ can help a great deal to focus more on the real important topics in life. It is certainly advisable to find a subject you care about – and you wholeheartedly feel others should care about, too. A subject where you can express yourself with as much of your skills & enthusiasm as possible. In such a vocation, you feel a sense of purpose, a sense of achievement. You feel you are making a contribution.

Of course the world has not always waited for our concerns of the heart, and it can be hard to progress in this field. However, there are so many people out there who don’t even know what they want in life. But if you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there – as they say. Maybe we have only played the part given to us by whomsoever. Maybe we have to imagine a new story for our life, a new sentence – and start to live it.

Video (2 minutes)
Sentence of life
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=AyRu7k70Jhc

Illustration (via lisacongdon.com)
Improve
https://twitter.com/AVSchaffner/status/412838301842677760/photo/1


5. ANNUAL CLOCK

We control space – but we are strongly controlled by time. Time & figures curtail so many of us. Despite the fact that we know from Einstein & others that time is ultimately just an illusion. But it feels of course very real in everyday life. We need time as essential construct for our workaday life, for our living together in society. We need time as essential construct for our thinking which includes past & future as we can only think in processes, in stories.

In plain language: We „sell“ our time for money – and with money we „buy back“ some time. And we constantly think we don’t have enough time, time just flies like nothing, turn over twice – and you face the end of the year. And once again so many important things have fallen by the wayside. We usually run in the no-time-mode and rarely in the my-time-mode. We are longing for a watch which ticks slower and provides us with a good, holistic feeling. An unknown, exhilarating, „colorful“ sense of time …

„The measurable side of the world is not the word“, so philosopher Martin Seel, „it’s the measurable side of the world.“ Instinctively we all know that …

Video (2 minutes)
Annual clock
http://vimeo.com/29543294

Illustration (via quoteswave.com)
My time
https://twitter.com/AVSchaffner/status/412481974163369984/photo/1


6. JOY RIDE

Take your pleasures seriously, we all know the old saying. However, in the daily routine we usually find something more necessary, more important, more urgent we need to do. At least we think so – and very often fun, pleasure & recreation fall by the wayside. However, there needs to be a balance in life. You can’t live by fun & pleasure only, either.

„We must try to contribute joy to the world. That is true no matter what our problems, our health, our circumstances“ told us film critic & journalist Roger Ebert who passed away in 2013. „We must try. I didn’t always know this and am happy I lived long enough to find it out.“ Joy to the world and to ourselves. „The Fast & The Furious“ star Paul Walker – who recently died in a car accident – put it like that: „I live by ‚Go big or go home‘. That’s with everything. It’s like either commit and go for it or don’t do it at all. I apply that to everything.“

He applied it to the joy ride, too …

Video (3 minutes)
Cityscape
http://vimeo.com/58822149

Illustration (via 9gag.com)
Rainbow Road
https://twitter.com/AVSchaffner/status/412836725371584512/photo/1


7. MEMORIES

We all miss something. Summer, a friend, our youth, a time when we could not be reached any time by anybody, whatever … Maybe also a sports team we stuck with when the times were tough … And maybe it doesn’t even exist anymore – except for the memories we want to prevent from fading away … like Annakin Slayd did so for the Montreal Expos, a baseball team playing for the last time in 2004. Sometimes you don’t know what you’ve got ’till it’s gone, so Slayd. But in the following video the Expos live on forever, the Kid & the Cat & El Presidente and all the other great players who will always have a place in the hearts of so many fans.

I have never seen the Expos playing – but for me this is a song for all the fans all over the world who miss a team they lost their heart to, who miss a certain time & togetherness, a home somehow. I think I listend to this song at least a 1000 times

Video (3 minutes)
Annakin Slayd – Remember
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bFX92ALqxlk&feature=player_detailpage

Illustration (via high-techtennis.com)
Memories
https://twitter.com/AVSchaffner/status/412113107146637313/photo/1


8. POETRY & LIFE

I love it when reality and imagination melt in a poetic way – especially when linked with an inspiring thought. Like in the video below which presents headlines we could have read like that or similar, if these people were still alive today. If they were still among us and could act in their distinct manner. „Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage“ described writer Anais Nin so accurately. Most people say no, of course – but, on the brighter side, you only need a few yes's to make a life.

A wonderfully poetic video – people around me know how much poetry in everyday life has always meant to me. In the TV series „Cold Case“ there used to be a closing scene where a murder victim of the (sometimes distant) past meets his/her entourage of back in life. Just a short moment, a glance maybe, a silent understanding, a short mergence of two worlds & times. Poetic …

Or take a singer and let him or her perform an old hit in front of a large-scale video wall, showing this artist 20, 30, 40 years ago, performing the same song. Tina Turner did so, others as well … A lovely little time travel …

Video (1 minute)
A world without hate
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3KyvlMJefR4&feature=player_detailpage

Illustration (via lisacongdon.com)
Thanks Harvey Milk
https://twitter.com/AVSchaffner/status/413603182325923840/photo/1


9. PURE & SIMPLE

I love this video – so simple, so pure, so beautiful. Sure, not everybody looks like Jane Birkin – but it’s not necessary to constantly excel in lavishness, eccentricity and/or potential for scandal in music clips. Of course you can ride a wrecking ball naked, and of course you can think of actions increasingly crazy & extreme – but you can also change down 5 gears and simply touch your audience with music & presence. And still enchant some 30 years later …

Enjoy music. But don’t look to the music clips (and the celeb world in general) to tell you what’s happening in your life – be what’s happening! Be your own Breaking Story!

Recently Jane Birkin lost her daughter Kate – our sympathies & love reach out to her in these trying times.

Video (4 minutes)
Jane Birkin – Quoi
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=4PtPIEW3Dhs

Illustration (via google.com)
Purpose & meaning
https://twitter.com/AVSchaffner/status/413946712869199872/photo/1


10. HERE & NOW

Of course we know that presence, that living in the moment is the center of our existence. We heard the good news „Live in the Here & Now“ and „Cherish the Moment“ time and time again – and symptoms of fatigue emerge. Not again, not now, don’t worry, we know it – but right now we have some urgent matters to take care of …

Even in the Holiday Season when we could relax somewhat in the „Here & Now“, we move on in our ordinary „Ifs & Buts mode“. What kills us isn't one big thing, but the thousands of tiny obligations we can't turn down for fear of disappointing others.

Take a break from time to time and enjoy the beauty of nature if you can. Leave your duties & open issues for a moment and try to fall into presence. Words tend to fill the mind, pictures tend to clear it. Next best thing to spending some time outside to relieve stress is a virtual mental health break – for example with one of the most beautiful music clips there is – at least for me. Lean back & enjoy:

Video (4 minutes)
Beirut – The Rip Tide
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=sX7fd8uQles

Illustration (via 9gag.com)
Ocean Club Meeting
https://twitter.com/AVSchaffner/status/413237408264507394/photo/1

Ok, it might be cold & dull outside – but somewhere in this world there's always an Ocean Club Meeting! Most of us might not be able to attend – but just remember Albert Camus‘ immortal phrase: „In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.“

Have a great & warm 2014!



PS: More inspiring videos you find here:
www.besser-fernsehen.ch
(right column, all the way down,
behind German titles mostly English videos)

Enjoy!


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