You’ve heard the expression before, but have you really given it some thought? I hadn’t until just a short time ago when I started realizing that the less I cared about “stuff” the less I wanted of it. Sounds obvious, right? Well, you would be surprised at how influential the media can be at making you think you care about something…when you don’t at all. The newest gadget, the shiniest car, the best looking home – we are constantly bombarded with images of the things they want us to care about and it is hard to not care…unless you are conscious of what is going on. For most of my life I was unaware of just how much I was being told to care about things that meant nothing to me, and while I still struggle with it often, I am in a much better place in being able to tell what I actually care about vs. what they want me to care about.
Just the other day I saw an ad on TV for a new Buick. A Buick – a car I would never, ever look at or have ever been interested in. To me, a Buick was a car for “older” people and not for anyone my age. However, they convinced me that this Buick was cool and very “Lexus-like”. For a few minutes after the ad, I actually thought I was interested in this Buick! They had succeeded in creating an image in my head that my mind wanted to pursue after the ad had passed. Ah, the genius of marketing.
I am not trying to say that you shouldn’t care about the things that interest you or be on the lookout for new interests. I have all sorts of interests that I have cultivated over time. But what I don’t have an interest in is “stuff” for stuff’s sake – and that’s what media wants to sell you. Advertisers want you to think that your life is not complete without this, that, and the other thing – and they are very good at selling you that idea. The key is to be aware of what is going on and being able to process it correctly. It’s a tough thing to do sometimes, but very important to try to keep in mind.
So do yourself a favor – learn to care less…and you will truly want not. Your mind, body, and lifestyle will thank you for it.