Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Today's Ramble - 10/25/06

Today, let's revisit the concept of "hedonic adaptation" (aka, the hedonic treadmill). The hedonic treadmill causes you to rapidly and inevitably adapt to good things by taking them for granted. As you accumulate more material possessions and accomplishments, your expectations rise. The deeds and things you worked so hard for no longer make you happy; you need to get something even better to boost your level of happiness into the upper reaches of its set range.

The good news is that, just as having the knowledge that television commercials are attempting to make you a materialistic bot allows you to avoid it, having an awareness of the impact of hedonic adaptation allows you to minimize its effects. Better yet, an awareness of it puts you in a better position to avoid wasting valuable resources (financial or otherwise) chasing after the gold ring that will not effectively increase your sense of well being.

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