Production and happiness

Economic production has been linked to overall happiness, as shown in this 2010 post from The Atlantic. While you can’t argue against the data, it can make you worry a little.

It makes sense that in our society, where value is all too often placed on material accumulation, people who find themselves out of work and/or not making high amounts of money, would experience lower levels of well-being.

Of course, if you define yourself by what you do, how much you make, and what you can buy, you will undoubtedly have a lower perceived self-value if you aren’t making big money.

It correlates with the introduction of the Sabbath in the Hebrew scriptures. God commanded an entire nation to rest once a week who until that point, were valued on their production levels. If your value equals the amount of bricks you can make (or for us it might sound like: reports you can file, designs you can create, articles you can write, campaigns you can produce, etc.), taking a day off is ludicrous. But it is exactly what was and is required for a new perspective on value and worth.

The message of Exodus: You are valued because of who you are, not based on what you can produce.

We all need to be reminded of that from time to time.