in 2021 it is clear that what was working thirty or forty years ago no longer is. Poverty and debt are increasing, and the solutions appear further away than ever. We are doing more and more damage to our environment and the path we are on is not sustainable. I think the answers are all inside us. This series of articles will help you navigate through, this is the third of eight.
As a species and as organisations we always seem to want more.
That is more growth, more money and more experiences.
We seem to think, the closer we get to having as much as we possibly can everything will be better.
But, just for the moment let’s consider the implications of having the most of everything, of having more than just enough.
We then find that everything is maxed out. We would have done the maximum amount of damage to the environment, because everything we have is consumed from the environment. It is taken and never returned.
Or if it is returned then it is returned as waste.
In pursuit of money, having the maximum amount of money is not a guarantee that you will feel any better.
In fact having the maximum amount of money often indicates a whole level of unhappiness instead of the opposite of what you expected, of what you wanted.
Money is like recreational drugs, it’s a mood enhancer. In the the event that you use recreational drugs and you are in a bad mood you are unlikely to feel any better.
Wrapping up the maximums as a summary we will see having the maximum is not a long-term strategy.
Does not make us feel better and it does not enhance our lives although the process of acquiring this thing would indicate that it is indeed a worthy goal. We get excited when pursuing something – this is the human ‘goal oriented’ way.
For me, I think we need to start turning things on their heads and to think very carefully about living our lives and managing our days based on the minimum and having enough.
Simply if you have enough then this frees up your life in order to focus on other things.
It frees up your time to focus on helping others, to put across your ideas to campaign for political change. Perhaps even spending time focusing on repairing a damaged environment or helping others less fortunate.
Because that is needed now more than ever.
This style of living will also reduce consumerism. Which so far has only led us to bondage, having more begets having even more – a cycle that is hard to break.
Economic growth cannot continue unfettered, a growth in the population cannot continue unfettered, or at least certainly not in the way it has been done so far.
So just for today, I want you to think about the areas of your life where you already have enough, where you have already solved the problems that have arisen during your lifetime and that now don’t need solving. Do you really need that new item of clothing, do you need that new car/laptop/phone. If we are to solve our internal problems – the feeling of not having enough then we can’t do that by having more.
Understand that if you are now 25 and have finished your education you are in the position that most 70-year olds would have been in 100 years ago. You know things that people just didn’t know then and that is very powerful.
If you start using that knowledge and the skills you have in order to change our futures. Then much changes, your short and medium term future could be very different. We have other ways of solving the problems, having less but doing more is one solution to that.
My age group the 50-plus is it seems unwilling or unable to think like this. They seem to want the maximum, when it does feel like they have already taken the best or at least had the best.
That always seems to me to be a little bit strange because they have really had the best of it all, with low-cost energy and low-cost housing along with food production and seemingly never ending Government support.
I guess that’s the human nature element of things in that they don’t think they have had it all and want things to continue just as they are.
I think there is an issue there about them having the maximums and not wanting to let them go which in all fairness is straightforward human psychology; it’s the thing we have fought wars over, or at least their generation has.
I think it’s time for us to consider a different way of doing things.
I think we need to be acquiring, and owning less than the maximum I think we need to be teaching ourselves that what we have is enough and a little bit of gratitude to support that would not go amiss.
I certainly think the time has come for us to be focused on solving the problems that we face as a collective and not as individuals but we also need to be looking at all of our systems and processes everything from politics to education. Then asking the question.
Is this the system we would design now knowing what we know and if it’s not what systems do we need to have in place in order to build a compelling future not only for us and our families but for the human race?
The whole idea of continuing to be selfish is not working that well for us and therefore consideration needs to be given to the alternatives and that starts with you and I.
As I have said before we need to be more I love you and less f*** you for a start. And we need to be shifting our mindset.
This is the youngest we will ever be we are now living in a time where everything is easy and efficient, we have the ability to communicate with everybody worldwide and we need to be using that to solve problems, not forcing ideology.
If we are to solve the problems we need to have a very different approach to things. This really could be the greatest time to be Alive ever, I think we are close but it just needs a few tweaks to make it even better.
If our futures are going to be as good as those that we dream of then we should start acting in order to get the change we deserve and crave.
Let’s start working together and let’s focus on the minimum requirements to make this work and not taking the maximum from the system. And that includes finding simple ways to do things, it’s about being more creative and then taking action.
Let us see if we can find the levers and pull them hard to shift from where we are now to where we need to be..
It starts with our thinking. We need to learn much more about how our money works, understand more about how the future or work is changing and how we should be using our minds – this is part of what MoneyTrainers is about.
You can start with a Borrow My Brain – a one off session to get clear on some of these things. It will solve some of your financial issues and deal with some of your head trash. It is life changing stuff and we need it now more than ever.