The other day I read about this great company that is currently starting up called Breather. It’s concept is supplying private space in large cities for meetings, working, relaxation or sleeping. In other words to offer peace and quite in the middle of the city. I think it’s a great idea and as an introvert, I sure hope that it turns out a great success since the direction the world is heading right now is not a great one for introverts that want a stress free life.
Even before reading about Breather I had been thinking about the state of the world and how people tend to hide away in their homes. The average American spends something like 34 hours a week watching tv in the safety of their home. Human lives today are controlled by fear, fear of death and health issues. Fear of being alone or growing old, fear of the unknown, crime, war, drugs, not being high enough in the social ladder, rejection etc. Home is a relaxing environment that we can control, something that is based on our own terms. In todays society everything is very intense and moving at a fast pace, where sensory novelty, consumerism and materialism is praised higher then spirituality and peace of mind. Indigenous tribes in parts of the world for example does not need this the same way that we do. A home becomes a shield from our stressful environment where we can recharge.
The irony in this whole concept though is that you could say that it is all based on the premise of fear, we lock ourselves out from the environment which we are in turn feeding and creating ourselves. We value this type of living even though it causes us harm in the end. Since 1991 there has been an 500% increase in the amount of prescriptions written for ADHD. Something that was not a big problem before the era of television and computers. Today children grow up in an environment where they can play games on computers, watching reality tv, eat junk food and where porn is widely available on the internet. Most of these things are shortcuts in life that will give you pleasure. However, the problem lies in the fact that they exploit our natural systems in our brains in a way that in the long term will cause more negative effects then positives. We might gain pleasure but it’s a bit like one step forward two steps back. When you don’t count medicine and higher living standards, I think people was happier before the twentieth century.
According to ABCNews August 24, 2004:
“Nearly a third of American adults have high blood pressure … Just over a decade ago, closer to one in four Americans had high blood pressure, and two decades ago the rate actually was declining. … About 65 million American adults now have high blood pressure 30 percent more than the 50 million who did in the previous decade, according to a report published Monday in Hypertension: Journal of the American Heart Association.”
When you put this in perspective like the concept of Breather has done, private space will be even more important in the future since our consumerism and high speed living shows no signs of slowing down. Instead we are making it all worse for ourselves and especially introverts will suffer from this.
I read some interesting articles about the evolution of cancer the other day. Way back before industrialism, pollution and fast food, cancer and tumors was not a very common cause of death. Comparing today to 1900 the statistics for cancer has almost tripled, and the cause of this is obviously our way of living. Yet we continue to evolve this way and you have to ask yourself the question if this is simply the curse of mankind, maybe we are really to smart for our own good.
Breather – Peace & quiet, on-demand
Causes of Death 2005 versus 1900
Death Rates by Cause of Death, 1900–2005
Your brain on porn