Simplicity is the next status symbol
I thought my friend Tim Davis was crazy when he told me that celebrities were getting rid of their phones. How weird was that idea! The cell phone represented freedom and access to information and people. Then I began to think of the other effects of the cell phone, constant texting, annoying phone calls, searching the web and the trend of a seeing people so glued to their phones that it’s difficult to make eye contact anymore. We have evolved into drones.
When something becomes too accessible and excessive waste becomes the norm, the status driven usually turns the other way, which leads me to the point. Simplicity is the next status symbol. Why else would certain celebrities give up their cell phones?
Consider status symbols of the past. Hundreds of years ago being overweight meant you had enough wealth to eat as much as you want. Pale skin meant a century or so ago showed that one didn’t have to work outside. The past few decades status has been predominately about excess waste… oversize cars meant you could afford the gas, owning a “McMansions” meant you had more than enough room for the stuff that you didn’t need. Now it seems the more fashionable cars are smaller, more efficient if they have a car at all and people are shaving off square footage from their house and downsizing to what they actually use. This trend toward simplicity seems to be catching on.
I doubt that simplicity will take us to Muhammad’s one grain of rice per day, but it does seem that a future status symbol is to live more simply, downsize and shed some of the excess and waste that was so popular in previous decades.