The focus of the western world is on production, and this model is spreading all around the five continents. The paradigm is: if you produce, your life conditions will improve.
It is important to point out that this is generally true, no doubt, but only up to a certain extent. The statement “if you produce your life conditions will improve” is as true as “if you do jogging regularly, you will feel good”. But how would you feel if you run for five hours consecutively, without being fit? To balance production we need sustainability. Indeed, the question is how much production affects our sense of purpose and well-being as human beings.
The concept of production leads a person to focus on the objects produced and on the process to produce them; this can be so strong that the fact that people are the ones who provide the workforce and the ones who should benefit from the end results, in some cases is forgotten or it becomes secondary. This is the reason why the Centered Life Model puts values at the foundation of the model, because, in this case, production is a value that should be balanced with the others (like sustainability for example) or any others important for you.
The interesting bit is that a social model based only on production tends to overwhelm life of people; indeed, at the beginning it significantly improves life conditions, but then it gets such a momentum that no one is able to control it, and it self-perpetuates through the fake promise of persistent happiness through richness, power and pleasure (a phenomenon that it is well described as “the flow of life”. Well, as said, at the beginning all is great, everything improves for you in ways you would have never imagined: this is life, enjoy the ride! But would you buy a car that has only the gas pedal and no brake pedal? If you like to speed up, I would recommend to learn how to slow down.
We have to be realistic; many will be horrified by this idea of challenging production. No doubt that production wins against any kind of waste: doing something wasting resources does not make any sense; however, there are plenty of situations where production has gone too far, for example:
- Children who are obsessed by parents or institutions to produce exceptional results at school, so losing forever the serenity of childhood and the capability of living in the present moment.
- Children who always receive everything they want from their parents, to become producers of short moments of happiness, so losing the joy of achieving results on their own.
- Working environments where people are mentally burned out because they are persistently requested to operate like robots, producing more and thinking/feeling less.
- People who approach life with a constant anxiety of producing some kind of results (i.e. being thinner, more beautiful, more attractive, more powerful, more performing, more everything)
It is interesting to notice that, in these examples, excess of demand of production works against productivity (unless someone thinks that in the circumstances described above, people achieve the greatest effectiveness on what they do).
Production makes sense when it is at the service of people’s values, not when it becomes a predominant value that crushes all the others. The affirmation of this concept is the first move from the industrial society to a knowledge-based society, where people have always a deep awareness that what they do have a meaning for them and what they produce is, directly or indirectly, beneficial for their sense of purpose, well being and effectiveness. The foundation of all concepts described above is widely described in the life-transforming book “Brilliant well-being”.
Many thanks in advance for your comments!
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