Creation & Consumption: Choose Wisely
“You cannot control your population by force, but it can be distracted by consumption.”
Humans only exist in two states: consumption or creation, and we often choose the former over the latter to our own detriment.
This post relates heavily to the post I made before about creation.
Boredom arose in the English language right after the Industrial Revolution.
Here’s why that isn’t a coincidence.
Prior to man being able to leverage technology to do his work, there was zero opportunity for boredom for the average person.
In order to survive, you had to work your ass off on your own farm, or working similarly brutal conditions for someone else just to be able to trade for the bare minimum.
After the industrial revolution (which I’m not arguing against unlike the Unabomber manifesto), the average person all of a sudden had leisure time. The wave of efficiency spurred on by new technologies meant that you did not have to slave away for hours to get by.
This was a large net positive for society. Diseases were cured, literacy rates went up, death rates went down, so on and so forth.
But now we have new problems to contend with. Suicide rates are up, marriage rates are plummeting, and the collective stress of society is on the rise.
Why? We don’t create enough, we consume too much, and we don’t consume the right things.
Most people are stuck in jobs they hate, in which they have very little responsibility. The cast their dreams aside for the steady IV drip of a paycheck, and bide the hours hating their boss and lamenting their existence.
In order to escape their pointless existence, people turn to consumption in their free time.
Consuming unhealthy foods, medication to keep their feelings in check, drugs to numb themselves and lubricate social experiences, entertainment for cheap laughs, sports for forced tribalism, and so on.
We try to fill the massive hole in our lives with all these substitutes for the real world and real experiences, but we’re missing the most crucial elements: risk and purpose.
Creation has purpose, creation has risk.
There is a chance that the art you create, or the business you start is rejected by the world.
But the very reason you have energy to pursue these things is that they give you a genuine sense of purpose. You either want to share your emotions and experiences to broader society so that they can connect, or you want to bring value to society with an idea that will bring people some sort of utility.
So what’s the solution for all of you out there feeling unsatisfied with your lives?
Create more. It doesn’t have to be something grand. Even writing or drawing for yourself, or starting a small e-commerce shop will bring you more joy than you can imagine.
Obviously, all creation and no consumption is also a recipe for disaster so don’t be afraid to find the right balance. On top of that, consume more wisely. Read more books, watch more documentaries, so on and so forth.
I promise you will feel more fulfilled.