Are you satisfied? 02.26.2013
Pretty tired tonight (as I write this). I’ve not gotten particularly good sleep the past couple of nights and it is really wearing on me now. Not sure I can even form enough complete thoughts to write this but I’ll try to do some broad strokes.
I had a good discussion today with my friend Garrick about discouragement vs. dissatisfaction.
The premise being that we live in a society that, in so many ways, simply wants us to be satisfied. It seeks to actively discourage us from making an impact on it. Those that are like everyone else are accepted. Those that are different are shunned or treated with suspicion. If one fits in and follows the crowd and stays largely unnoticed is promised a life with very little risk. Just be satisfied with the way things are.
There are many people who are happy with such a life. Those whose only ambition is to have a job they can show up at, do the bare minimum, get their paycheck and benefits with automatic inflation-adjusted yearly raises, then retire comfortably in someplace warm. They discourage themselves from sticking out one way or the other. They find satisfaction in their mediocracy. And, society is largely satisfied with them there.
On the other side, there are those that are that are driven by dissatisfaction. Those for whom there is always something better or something more. Those that live to stick out like a sore thumb. Those that are not afraid to challenge the status quo. Often, these people make terrible employees because they are never satisfied with their jobs. They are restless seekers. They are full of ideas plans and schemes. Society likes to romanticize these folks but often brands them reckless and dangerous.
Perhaps I’m biased but I believe the only cure for discouragement is dissatisfaction. That it is a key ingredient, perhaps the key ingredient, to success. That only once one is sufficiently dissatisfied will they be able to make real noticeable change — either in themselves or in society as a whole.
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