Detox the Drama: Finding Serenity in a World Obsessed with Status

Social Media Detox? Nah, Let’s Upgrade Your Inner Operating System

Elumar De Sa
2 min readJan 24, 2024
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Do you feel like you’re on an endless emotional rollercoaster lately? You’re not alone. Between divisive politics, economic uncertainties, and social media hysteria, these are anxiety-provoking times. The 24/7 news cycle keeps us in a constant state of distress.

Over 2000 years ago, the Greek philosopher Epicurus dealt with his own era of turbulence by developing an approach to cultivate steady inner calm. His wisdom offered radical notions of happiness that were contrarian then…and now.

Epicurus taught that the path to tranquility begins by controlling our reactions to external chaos. Today, his principles provide a framework for maintaining your equilibrium in the face of modern disruptions.

The Problem: Why We’re Emotionally Off-Balance

Social media algorithms, breaking news notifications, and constant connectivity trigger fight-or-flight emotions, keeping us perpetually on edge. Epicurus held that the root cause of distress is vainly desiring validation, possessions, status — things outside our control. This attachment leaves us emotionally vulnerable.

The Practice: Achieve Ataraxia Through Inner Work

Epicurus preached the importance of “ataraxia” — imperturbability and serene tranquility. By limiting our needs to simple pleasures, minimizing future worries, and curbing vain desires, we remain impervious to external turbulence.

He prescribed a training regimen to manage emotions more mindfully called tetrapharmakon:

  1. Don’t fear god
  2. Don’t worry about death
  3. What is good is easy to get
  4. What is terrible is easy to endure

Moderating your consumption, surrounding yourself with a positive community, practicing gratitude rituals, and letting go of perfectionist expectations are other ways to stabilize your state.

Applying the Teachings: Find Daily Islands of Calm

When stressful situations trigger unease, pause and ask: “Is this under my control?” If not, redirect emotions to what you can manage — your reactions. Slow down, turn off needless notifications, and go for a short walk. Small steps create islands of calm amidst the storm.

Over time, regularly applying Epicurean principles reshapes your emotional patterns. You become less reactive and more intentional in how you allocate attention. The turbulence may continue, but you cultivate mastery of your inner domain.

The journey requires commitment, but the promise of ataraxia keeps you moving forward one step at a time. Each small victory compounds until you feel confident in finding clarity within the chaos.

Your thoughts matter! How do you find meaning and fulfillment in our busy modern world? Share your perspectives and insights below. Let’s cultivate an uplifting community where we learn from each other’s journeys towards abundance.

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Elumar De Sa

Apple Manager & Future Author of 'The Dark Side of Intention' | Bridging Technology and Ethics for Conscious Decision-Making and Ethical Engagement