The newest phone, a more fashionable hand bag, a bigger house . . . What do these things do for us? What they don’t do is bring lasting happiness, nor do they make us better humans. Playing “one-up” pits us against one another, turning friends into opponents and creating an obscene amount of waste as we indulge in acquisition.
We are mislead to believe that owning more stuff will make things better. It’s absurd, ecologically toxic, and creates a whole host of problems. Short-term gratification is the bitsy benefit which fails to fulfill our real human needs. It’s something we can easily live without. People upgrade incessantly from one functioning item to the latest model mostly in an attempt to gain admiration. And a newer model is just around the corner! Just because one can, one does, with no consideration of how this unreasonable consumption unfolds in its’ many directions.
The thing is that self-worth is not rooted in material value so this attitude will not be successful in achieving lasting joy and contentment. A focus on monetary growth is hurting people, destroying our ecological system, and is not generating wins in the big picture. See this story Dark Crystals: The brutal reality behind a booming wellness craze for one example of how something trendy can be so destructive and hypocritical (if you don’t read the article in its’ entirety search for the paragraph starting with “At Tuscon, in the marquee” for a taste of a problematic attitude.).
We all want to be free and happy but I question how many of us put in the time and work to figure out what that truly takes. Each individual is irreplaceable and unique so the answer can’t just be in what’s trending. We are acting like a herd rather than knowing who I, myself, as an individual am. Trying to live up to the standards of happiness defined by someone else will never be the right answer for me.
I am going to do the work to identify my ideal self. Then compare myself to that instead of other people. That should always fit and feel like progress. I think it will also have the highest chance of success. It’s a goal worth working towards!
How about you?