Scanorama: Be here, now

Here’s my column from the September issue of Scanorama. Keep reading below.

Live in the now!

Live in the now

It’s not always easy being an early adopter. Take the iPhone, for example, and how Apple had to give a 100-dollar rebate to the customers that had bought the new phone who then found themselves fooled when Apple cut the price just two months after the launch.

Then there are all the early adopters in Europe who got themselves the iPhone and then cracked it so it would work with the operator they used. Now, a year later, the iPhone is on its way to Europe, with 3G, GPS and a bunch of other new goodies.

But that’s just the way it is. We all know that when we walk out the store with a new laptop, it’s old before we get to the car. Weeks, months later, there’ll be a new model, a new color and a new processor that makes everything cooler, faster, and easier. We just have to live with the fact, and like with everything else in life, we have to learn to enjoy the now.

And that’s a scientific fact.

The human brain is wired to balance the happiness and the unhappiness in a way that, according to a study by Dan Gilbert, author of the bestselling book “Stumbling on Happiness”, has lottery winners and paraplegics feeling just as happy, a year after the even that changed their lives.

What makes us unhappy is delaying the happiness to the future. Thinking that we’d be happy when we got rich, married Madonna (or Jessica Alba), or got that new job so we could boss over the people we work with now.

In other words, happiness is not buying the iPhone, but instead, realizing what a magical piece of technology it is, and being happy with the one you’ve got, even if your friends now have the newest, and coolest one.

Happiness is enjoying your very own phone – now! – and enjoying the fact that Apple also slashed its iPhone prices to half. Maybe Grandma would like to have your old one?

See, giving – that brings true happiness.

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How does that make you feel?