Societal Depression

It’s interesting that in less developed countries they have fewer cases of depression and conditions like ADHD. I know what you’re going to say, “But Alex, they probably have those conditions, they just don’t diagnosis them.” Which may be true. But the thing about stuff and technology and development is this: it doesn’t necessarily make us any happier. In fact, there’s many studies that show people who live a simpler life are happier. Which makes sense, if you think about it–look: studies have been done that have found the range of income at which people become less happy if the make over X amount of dollars each year. I think they the downward slope of the bell curve started around around 80,000 per year (but it also varies depending on the state, in the U.S.). Anyway, once people make that much, there’s raw data to indicate, the more likely those people are to be unhappy.

If we look at this as a societal problem, I think it supports the idea that those who live a more fundamental life, feel more fulfilled and so have a more stable mental state.

I’m not advocating for destroying technology, moving out of the city and all becoming farmers. In fact, I love technology. I love knowledge, and I love the exploration the human race is perusing (Applause for SpaceX). But it seems to me that the more a culture is fixated on image, material wealth, and fulfillment from others, the less likely we are to get it. People are constantly looking toward their next, higher paying job, or next sales goal, or, for me, my next publication in a magazine–and we all think, HA! if I could get to this point, then I’d be happy. But the truth is, as soon as you reach that point, as soon as I get my hands on that magazine I was published in, my mind is on to other things, and I’m seeking fulfillment all over again.

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2 thoughts on “Societal Depression

  1. You misunderstand. Technology doesn’t cause either depression or ADHD, and like ADHD, clinical depression is also a neurological disorder. However, the prevalence of technologies actually exacerbates both conditions. So someone who may have slight ADHD in a different culture/society may exhibit more severe symptoms if they were exposed to the type of tech that most people in developed countries are.

    Here is a Time article about ADHD and technology: http://techland.time.com/2013/07/08/a-nation-of-kids-with-gadgets-and-adhd/

    And one on how Internet use can worsen depression: https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2010/feb/03/excessive-internet-use-depression

    Liked by 1 person

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