This quote from Richard Feynman is a great one for today’s world. It is one thing to try to fool others, but the last thing you should be doing is fooling yourself. Our world has shrunk quite a bit, and it seems to be a full time job for a lot of people to do their best to fool online followers about the fabulous lives they are leading. Unfortunately nowadays, the “Joneses” that everyone is trying to keep up with are broadcasting to the world, not just the street where they live. The lies grow bigger and deeper all the time, as lost souls and wannabes wander the digital landscape looking for validation through others.
You need to stop fooling yourself when it comes to this stuff. ASAP.
I am speaking from experience. I know how easy it is to fall into the traps of social life, and even more how it seems to go with the territory of feeling “normal”. It is the human condition to want to fit in and be recognized as one of the group. This conditioning dates back to the dawn of man, when we lived in small bands and villages to survive. You had to integrate, or you died. In today’s world, it may feel that way but it is far less likely. Please allow me to let you in on a little secret on this topic…..EVERYONE FEELS THAT WAY. The cool kids do, the outcasts do, the CEO feels lonely at the top and the workers feel disconnected from their peers and management. It is everywhere, and no one is immune. I guess the real question is…what do you do about it?
If you are trying to buy your way into “cool” status with the labels you wear, the car you drive, etc., you are headed down the wrong path. I did it, still do it on occasion, as do most people. We are constantly programmed through advertising and society to buy more, flaunt labels, etc. In some cases, spending more money on an item does mean better quality and lifespan/use of that product but in many cases, one factory in China is churning out most of the same products and sewing different labels on the same things to allow a merchant to charge you much more for the same item. Craziness…
If you need an exercise in the area, give this a try: Go to a local thrift shop or donation store like Goodwill or the Salvation Army and buy something to wear. Doesn’t matter what it is, just find something that sort of fits your overall look or need, and spend a fraction of what it would have cost at the mall. See how it feels, and I don’t mean the fit. See how you feel knowing you saved a ton of money and still got something “new”. For me, I m bragging about shopping at these places now. I love the fact that there is no way for someone to really justify to me (in my mind) why they would buy the same item on amazon.com for way more money. I love the fact that I CAN buy things at places like this and save money for other things. This mentality shift is how I am going to be debt free very soon. I have a driving force behind each monetary purchase, and the better job I do, the sooner I am debt free and have FAR LESS CONCERNS in the financial realm than a very large majority of the U.S.
Don’t get me wrong, I can’t buy everything I want at Goodwill, but if I can find something there, or on places like OfferUp and other peer to peer purchasing apps, I am saving some serious bank by doing so. It allows me to splurge in other areas, and like I stated above, chips away at the ever-decreasing pile of debt that I wracked up from sins of the past.
I learned to stop fooling myself at some point; I know now that what I am wearing is not going to make a difference in how people perceive me. I needed to work on myself to feel comfortable in my own skin. That is time and effort well spent, not working a job I hate to buy crap I don’t need. I learned that I was in fact the easiest person to fool, and once I became aware of that, things changed for the better in a hurry. I highly recommend you take steps to doing the same, as you will be far better off because of it.