Editor’s note: My life has essentially been a (still) unending struggle to move from deficit to surplus thinking. I’m making progress.
Original Article: https://seths.blog/2019/08/living-in-surplus/
In our culture, it’s easy to choose to live in deficit.
To spend just a bit more than you make, so that you’re in debt.
To need to drive just a bit faster than the prevailing traffic, so you can push every interaction.
To measure yourself against someone (there’s always someone) who has more (there’s always more) than you do.
If this habit of becoming ‘behind’ is the fuel you need to do your best work, it’s difficult for an outsider to argue against.
But consider that it’s also possible to choose to live in surplus.
To spend a bit less than you make, so you’re never worried about paying the rent.
To drive with the flow of (metaphorical) traffic, because not only is it safer, it frees you up to dream.
And to measure yourself against no one but yourself. Raise your standards as often as you can, but not because someone else you chose out of the lineup of success is somehow ahead of you.
When you live in surplus, you can choose to produce because of generosity and wonder, not because you’re drowning.