I’m so sick of wanting all the things!

Most of us compare our own happiness to that of others. And Facebook and Instagram are seriously not helping this ever-nagging FOMO/ guilt feeling I get (especially on Saturdays when I’m vegging on the couch).

It is a tumultuous relationship, the one we have with stuff. I constantly find myself wanting and feeling like I need certain things in order to be happy. If it’s not an item of on-trend fashion, it’s a new TV or fancy dinners at the hottest new eateries in Cape Town.

Which has me thinking, what’s next: a boat?!

Most of us compare our own happiness to that of others. And Facebook and Instagram are seriously not helping this ever-nagging FOMO/ guilt feeling I get (especially on Saturdays when I’m vegging on the couch).

FOMO: because I want what they have. The Instagram people who are enjoying those Instagrammable Cape Town lunches or pastries in their oh-so-normcore-outfits. I want that jean pant!

Guilt: because I should be doing more, making more of an effort to get out and be like all the other people. Yet, if I were living in die Karoo with a husband and my petskapies, ploughing the fields, I’m sure I would not have this issue. Sure, if I lived there I might not have reception or Wi-Fi (a blessing in disguise if you tell me), but because I live in CT with all the fabulous people and places; I feel the FOMO and desire to have, have, have more every day.

Oh, and I’m also in the fashion biz, which means you are constantly reminded of what you don’t have and what you should have in order to be rendered a complete human.

But being completed, filled up with stuff is a total lost cause if you ask me. It doesn’t make you better or smarter or more interesting. Just look at how unhappy Anna Wintour looks half the time…

I remember reading about famous philosopher, Hegel’s unhappy hero whilst studying. Hegel speaks about a ‘Geist’, loosely translated as a spirit of some kind. This spirit is a very unhappy puppy, always striving for absolute knowledge.  It is much like a protagonist from your favourite novel or film. The hero. The star if you will.

This hero starts off by seeking something, some form of enlightenment. You track this subject’s journey as they finally reach a certain level of fulfilment. But, Hegel makes the point that one’s voyage towards absolute knowledge is, in fact, a metaphysical one.

Our perception of what absolute knowledge is or how we reach a state of enlightenment lives only in our minds. So, the ultimate reality is that we can only find happiness, fulfilment and peace in ourselves. Yes, look within and that bollocks.

We set the parameters of our own happiness. Yet, of course, the discourse in which we reside determines how we perceive the meaning of absolute knowledge.  Mainstream consumerism and mass media culture have tainted our ability to be satisfied with what we have. We are constantly faced with celeb culture that values stuff above all else. It’s a very bourgeoisie type deal, which is so superficial and pretentious it almost makes me cry of embarrassment. But I still can’t help but want what the Instagram people have! Help!

Sarah Salih writes in Judith Butler: “Absolute knowledge is only reached when the mind grasps the fact that reality is not independent of it, and what it is striving to know is really itself.”

So, first and foremost I plan to get to know myself better first, before obsessing more about the Instagram-worthy life I should be leading. It’s all in the mind people.

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