Meaningfulless; Meaningfulmore.

2007 June 24


These two little Post-it notes have hung on for dear life on my laptop for trips to at least five different cities across three countries. Each time they fall off as they lose their stickiness, I pick them off the ground and hope that they still have some staying power. Miraculously they are here with me in Shanghai but now I can officially relieve them of their duty.

How we evaluate our particular feelings on a situation of less versus more depends entirely on the overall law6. We generally strive for that which is meaningful in life, and thus a little bit of something (less) when timed correctly can mean a great deal. There is certain poetry in a gift of less -- such as the offering of a single rose versus twelve.

On the other hand, a lot of something (more) can be particularly exciting when you've gotten by with so little. For instance I recall being stuck in a suburb of Dallas one summer without a car with only access to food from a 7-11. I became an expert at cooking with Bisquick. One day I wandered by foot in the blistering Dallas heat about three miles to get to a bona fide supermarket. The feeling was awesome. In later years enabled by a car however, I lack the same exhuberance when visiting the supermarket unfortunately.

It seems that there's much greater challenge in creating meaning from less, than it might be for creating meaning from more. At the same time, from a resources standpoint less is generally cheaper than more, so less is physically easier to realize. The overarching question is how to envalue the state of less so that it feels like more.So I go back to thinking more about this for later ...