Simple-Short-Summary: Alan Watts uncovers the absurdity of modern-day life in which you chase your goals and desires of materialistic things that assure you to deliver happiness but make you anxious, and as you involve more in unproductive thinking, you are most likely to forget this moment that’s now.
The Wisdom of Insecurity is for people who have been searching for happiness’s secrets because of anxiety and unfulfillment.
The Wisdom Of Insecurity Summary
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How do you want your life to end up? Do you want to lead your life with purpose?
Or, you want to live your life with modern life gadgets. If you think to live a pleasure-seeking and consumerism life, you will not be satisfied for a long time.
Modern gadgets, high-tech cars, big houses, you can buy all of these sort of things from cash. Unfortunately, there are other more valuable things like happiness, respect, purpose, and clean consciousness that money can’t buy.
In these lessons, you will learn how to find meaning in your life.
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Lesson: A – Happiness comes from inside not from chasing goals
Have you ever told yourself that once you accomplish your goals, you eventually become happy? Goals such as getting that promotion or buying a new Porsche mustang car.
Most people squander their precious time in chasing those objectives, and after fulfilling their goals, many meet with emptiness. It happened because of consumerism culture.
It urges customers to spend their money on materialistic things to live an extravagant life. However, the pursuit of happiness will never end.
Many people who have been living in Western culture works in the same manner. They always chase the things that they will never get.
At a young age, children got trained to follow this path. Parents injected this theory into the brain of their kids that they will become happy by acquiring good marks in school, graduating from college, and getting a prestigious job that offers better retirement options.
However, what will happen after you have got a well-paid job and have acquired a house? Most probably, on a random day, you are sitting on a couch while emptiness stares at you. In this case, you may wonder to aim for another goal to chase.
In the name of happiness, you continue to chase one goal after another that causes anxiety to set in. Of course, thinking in this manner will eventually produce ineffective decisions and take your career in the wrong direction.
Other people will try to steer you away. Authority figures, teachers, and parents can persuade you to chase a well-paying job.
Moreover, it is easy to waste your valuable time by doing unsatisfying work just for the sake of other people’s happiness. Perhaps, your calling is something different.
Something that compels you to take massive actions and brings joy and fulfillment in your life. Maybe, you want to help others or become a social worker.
Then, following others’ advice may turn down your happiness. Thus, you should do what you love to do and never depend on the goal to bring smile on your face.
Lesson: B – Embrace your emotions and live your life in the present moment
There are moments when you feel lonely, hopeless, and unhappy. In those times, instead of showing empathy, someone remarks on you that you think so much.
It may sound a bit harsh, but you wonder, am I? The majority of people are unhappy with their life not because of what they are doing, but they have not done what they wanted to do.
Rather than bemoaning about the past or preparing a solid blueprint for the future, you should aim to enjoy the present moment. Actually, feeling something is far more powerful compare with thinking in your head.
Enjoy every moment of today, and don’t mull over the ways it influences you later. Suppose you are going to eat a bowl of tasty pasta.
Instead of taking pictures and uploading them on your social media accounts, it is far better to pleasure yourself with the savor of this food. There are times when your current situation causes you stress, even in those times, you must endure the emotions because defying and refusing your existing emotions make things worse.
In addition, escaping and resisting from these agonizing feelings cause anxiety to set in. Instead, keep calm, and sooner, you will reach a state where your emotions settle.
It is how your brain works as it urges you to surrender to the emotions you are feeling. Thus, embracing these experiences and feelings will de-escalate the tension.
Lesson: C – Enjoy the ups and endure the downs because life is like a seesaw, keep moving
Everyone wants to enjoy their life with all highs without any lows. Sadly, life doesn’t function in this way.
To value the joys of life, you have to endure the painful experiences too. Thus, the beauty of life always comes with a price to pay.
Pain and joy are two sides of a seesaw, and you have to experience both. Once you have gone through hardship, then only you will be able to value happy moments.
In fact, when you experience any one feeling, you will eventually feel the other. To save yourself from feeling either of these emotions, you can do one thing which is to stop labeling these emotions as good or bad.
Think of these feelings in terms of temporary events. With this, you will be able to acknowledge the pain as a necessary experience that you have to endure.
With this perspective, you break the chain of worries that have acquired your life. Worry is a vicious cycle because you worry about things that have not happened.
However, adopting the right attitude will reconcile yourself with the highs and lows of life. With this, you will stop striving to manage everything, break the vicious cycle, and unleash yourself from your worries.
Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion Summary: What’s in it for me?
- Lesson: A – Start with offer that will surely reject and then ask what you want
- Lesson: B – When an uncertain situation arises, we look for other people behavior
- Lesson: C – People like us can influence our behavior greatly