We are going through a period of widespread anxiety. We have gone from a generation motivated by a longed-for success to a generation imprisoned by the anxiety of success.
There is no time, the search for quick success and fame. The ephemeral is taking over in a silent battle of values. It is a passing evil or, perhaps, less temporary than we think but, in any case, it is here, among us.
Global media access is making it possible for anyone to compare themselves with the most important people in the world.
We are witnessing a revolution comparable in scope to the industrial revolution of the 18th and 19th centuries, although much more vertiginous than the latter.
In an extremely short period of time, the new communication technologies have given rise to a new system that has profoundly changed culture and the global economy. And we are still in our infancy.
Now, the stages are compressed and the models are changing, generating new opportunities as well as new anxieties.
This is the case of the valuation of youth in the media or stories about great achievements at a very young age.
Facebook, in its day, has changed the way of communicating, sharing, approaching much of the world, is a perfect example. But also generating anxiety and frustration.
On Instagram you live a parallel reality: it is a universe where inflation did not arrive, where you do not see the news of the invasion of Ukraine, where there are no migrants or displaced people, but a vanity catwalk in full explosion of puberty.
And now the metaverse.
You don’t have a podcast? You’re not streaming on Twitch? And YouTube channel? Blog? Newsletter? No? No.
Because in addition to being a Twitter, WhatsApp, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Trello, Slack, TikTok, Medium, Zoom, Teams, Mail user, I have to work and above all live.
This kind of model makes people fear that what they haven’t accomplished before the age of 40 is no longer achievable and valuable thereafter.
This idea increases the uncertainty we are talking about and devalues traditional careers, which take a long time to evolve and do not always lead to spectacular financial success, nor to fame in most cases.
Is civilization a race between education and the superfluous?
There was a time when human beings created literature, sports, art, science, architecture, design, the city, to name a few. In this time he creates TikTok, Fortnite, Instagram, Facebook, Candy Crush, Snapchat, to name a few.
Maybe it’s not bad, not good, just new.
This anxiety, mixed with social pressure and added to the need to show immediate results propitiates a constant search for short-term triumph.
In this new context we can see how “ordinary” individuals, like any of us, become famous in no time.
Values such as research in knowledge or contribution to the improvement of society are less clear in our society than they have ever been before. Or almost never, not to be so lapidary.
If we do not put an end to anxious superficiality, we run the risk that it will put an end to us.
We all compare ourselves with others.
But we need to be aware that if we measure our own worth based on comparative criteria, such as wealth and fame, we are condemned to live in constant frustration.
The way forward is to feel that one is authentically living one’s own life, that there is an inherent logic to our own development, and that our contribution to the world is evolving and growing. This contribution can never be evaluated by comparative measurements.
Professional fulfillment requires a lot of work.
No one expects to be satisfied with just a few days’ effort.
Education should not only be oriented towards obtaining a successful career in record time, but also towards fundamental questions about values and truths that have been lost in recent times, and need to be re-established.
It is a lifelong process that should be valued and enjoyed.
Man is a curious and creative creature and both qualities belie the idea that it is not possible to change things.