The toxic culture of "better"

3 Sept 2019

Where does happiness lie? When striving for it, why does it always seem out of reach?

Clutter is caused by many things, but acquiring is a big reason we have too much stuff. We acquire things a lot of the time because we feel we need The Thing because it will make our lives better. From the pretty new notebook (I'll get organised) to the new shoes (I'll look taller and trendier) to the new rug (the other one didn't match the sofa properly) and the new kitchen storage (glass will be safer).

Are you afflicted by this? (Hint: we all are to some degree!). What can do you do about it? Is it okay? Is it not? Why?

This week Bec and Tara throw all these questions into the pot and mix it up for you to taste.

Show Notes:

Why are we all striving to be better? Do we think it equals happiness? Is happiness a destination on the horizon where people have the perfect amount of stuff/ time/ status?

Striving for better comes from comparison.

Our consumerist society and the economies of our western culture rely on us as humans being dissatisfied and continuing to buy more/ want more/ want better.

Wanting better comes from recognising the gap between where we are and where we think we’d like to be.

The Story of Stuff: Annie Leonard

How does wanting more/ striving for more fit in with your values?


Family/ connection

Mental health

What is the answer -



Define what you want- stop moving the goal posts

Choose experiences over things

Try using things til they’re broken - eschew fast fashion

Recognise feelings of comparison and stop them - divert attention

Stop hanging around people that are all about ‘the things’

Paradox - striving for better to be happy but the striving and wanting make us constantly unhappy

Reference links