We’ve all heard it, usually making fun, “If it’s on the internet, it must be true!” We laugh because we know that there are people who are not, shall we say, as skeptical as perhaps they should be of what they read online.
Last time we looked at how we can sometimes fall into that trap, even though we are usually skeptical. What gets us in trouble? Memes. You know those images that include words of wisdom? They’re often really, really funny. My favorites use pictures from hugely popular movies. Like the one picturing Boromir, from The Fellowship of the Ring, saying “One does not simply walk…” (which he does in the movie) “into Costco without buying a 70” TV” (which, of course, he doesn’t say in the movie).
We laugh because if we’ve been to Costco, we get the joke. It is hard not to come out of there with things we didn’t have on our list. So before we move on, let’s redeploy Boromir’s famous line: “One does not simply walk into…Costco without bringing a list.” (more…)
We explored how often and easily we discover that the enemy of our forward motion towards “move-to goals”…is us. We get in our own way. Like cooks in the kitchen of our own lives, we whip up some self-induced crab-melt. Like the proverbial black-crab letting go of the lid, we chicken out.
Why is that?
Perhaps we believe someone’s assessment of us was—and still is—correct. Maybe we find the challenge too daunting. Often, we just lose faith.
It’s odd, though, isn’t it?
Back in the Day
Not too many generations ago, our forebears’ lives were defined by scarcity. The founders of the United States came here for the freedom it presented. For many, they sought the freedom to worship as they chose. For others, it was the freedom to seek out a new future in a new land where anything was possible. Out of their prior experience of scarcity, they eagerly challenged themselves to seek out and discover that promised abundance.
Living in the United States or any “1st world” country means being surrounded by abundance, not scarcity. The world has reversed.
Is there still inequality in the 1st world? Sure. Most of the population of earth lives on less than $2 a day. So even those that live in scarcity in the 1st world are surrounded by an abundance others can’t imagine.
And here we find the answer to our own, self-inflicted, loss-of-faith-in-what-our-future-holds, scarcity versus abundance, black crab-meltdowns come from: lack of imagination.
We forget to see things as they are…elsewhere. Rather than gratitude for all we have, we focus on what we don’t. As a result, our vision gets clouded by thousands of daily, hyper-fast, multi-social media-delivered, scarcity messages that scream at us about our deprivation, about how much better life would be if we owned _________, lived in _________, drove _________, ate _________, looked like _________, etc.
And we believe it.
So our dreams are, for the most part, shriveled and pathetic. We subject them to definitions supported by the media. In other words, we enable them to be shriveled and pathetic, because others do the same. Our vision of the future is intoxicated by small things.
Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for. Epicurus
In truth, our vision needs to be bigger than what we have entertained in the past. We’d be more motivated to reach for the heights when the result of reaching those heights positively impacts others more than it benefits us.
What if just one intrepid, defiant black crab can help pull a few others to an unimaginably abundant freedom, full of opportunity? Then those newly liberated can pull a few more over the lid of limitation.
Until the bucket is empty.
Engage here. Want more Black Crab Syndrome, go here.