“I’ll never be ashamed to quote a bad writer with a good saying.” Seneca, On Tranquility of Mind.
What judgements do we make about the characteristics of things while ignoring whether they fulfil the initial purpose for which we engage with them? How quick are we to dismiss fundamental values and virtues because we place more importance on intangible qualities?
Our emotional brain looks for signs and symbols that alert us to potential threat or reassure us of relative safety. We judge the book by its cover; we admire the clothes by the brand. And we feel good about ourselves, because, after all, fine feathers make a fine bird.
How difficult or unpleasant would it be to do without these additional trappings of ‘quality assured’ and ‘satisfaction guaranteed’? The level of satisfaction to be guaranteed is for you to decide. Could you lower it, even just for a while?
Try going without your branded goods and your ‘special choice’ for a day, and see how you get on. You’ll probably cope. Then reflect on what you really need. Satisfied now?