You might have already heard of the quote:
“The higher you throw the brick, the more unpredictable life becomes.”
But most likely not, because that’s just something I made up. What is the brick for anyway? Here, throw it up in the air as high as you can.
Why we do what we do
Like most of the things happening in our lives, this quote looks like it doesn’t make any sense. But as you read, you will realize that it really doesn’t. Because it’s not simply reading or knowing that will make you understand. Just like this quote or idea, what you think, what you want, and what you believe are not as simple as they seem.
Every decisions are the results of much more complex systems in your brain. Understanding these systems will not only help you know yourself better but also give you some clue on why other people do what they do.
Most of our decisions are simple. Either this one or the other. Should I kiss her? This cute little bag, or more food? The one I love, or the one who loves me. Whatever we choose in these dilemmas, are decided by the little angels and devils living inside our head; The six human needs. These are not our wants or desires but are the psychological needs controlling every string in our brain.
One of the six human needs is certainty. In life, we are constantly attracted to what makes us comfortable.We need an assurance that life, if not better, remains as comfortable as it is now. Most of our choices are made to secure the things that are most important to us.
Why do people struggle for the diploma? To secure a job in the future. Why do we save money? We need the financial security and make sure that on the next day, we have money for pizza.
Why do men give promises? And why do women love hearing them? In this world full of doubt and unpredictability, certainty is our comfort zone. It’s what binds us and help us conserve our sanity; it’s the comfy little teddy bear we keep beside us to protect us from midnight monsters.
What could go wrong?
Unfortunately, a lot of things. As we all know, the comfort zone can ironically be a dangerous place. Once you get addicted to comfort, everything that involves risk becomes your enemy; even if that risk gives you more comfort in a long run. This could be the reason why people find it hard to leave the job they hate, or end a toxic relationship.
Simultaneously, when we become too certain and life becomes too predictable, what happens then? When we trap ourselves in habits, and everyday becomes almost the same; We get bored. Which is why we need one other thing. The second human need:
Uncertainty / Variety
“The only certainty, is that nothing is certain.”
We need variety. A static life means simply being alive and not living life. We spent the first 10 years of our lives, obeying what our parents told us, and learning by doing what they do. As we grow up, we learn that there are more out there.
Humans love adventure. We are attracted to the the unknown, the forbidden and whatever it is that looks dangerous but fun. Remember the moment you consciously broke a rule. Like when I parked in front of the “No Parking sign.” Or when you playfully touched the sculpture that says “Don’t touch.” I’m certain, we all have a similar experience. The first bite of the forbidden fruit.
How did it feel? Exciting? Refreshing? Spine-tingling?
But my friend, a warning from our master:
“When you look at the dark side, careful you must be. For the dark side looks back.”
Adrenaline is highly addictive.
One day, you’re going past the no entry sign, the next day, you’re trying drugs because it seems exciting. Don’t do that, my God, I hate drugs. Maybe an exaggeration, but you know what I mean. Drink moderately.
Because just like in certainty, uncertainty is not all rainbows and sun shines. The world of uncertainty is filled with everything that can make you uncomfortable. It is one of the biggest contributor to the all the stresses in our lives. Did I feed my dog already? What if I fail that subject? It’s freaking seasonal. Why is he not texting back?
Doubts, fears, worries, and distrust
Blame that all to uncertainty. Break ups? Sure!
Did you know that most relationships fall apart because of the human need for uncertainty? Without variety, people get sick of each other. This is the common relationship dilemma. A fun, and exciting uncertainty during the courtship process. New experiences together; A few; until they reach the flat line. Then it’s over. That’s why, never stop trying new things. **Grin**
We need both the certainty and uncertainty
One maybe to make us feel alive, and one to remind us that we have limitations or that we need rest. In the end, it’s all about balance. Because life is an interplay between the good and the bad. You can look up the night sky and contemplate on the vastness of the universe, or you can dive beneath and face the darkest depth of the sea. Either way, a shark, or a meteor can kill you anytime anyway. But however uncertain life is, what’s important is you’re certain, that now, you’re living it.
But before you go ahead, and continue what you were doing, I have something for you. Below is a story I found online, that will conclude everything you’ve read today. Read it carefully to make sure you get the moral of the story.
A guy was riding on an airplane, and he decided to smoke a cigar. Unfortunately, he was sitting next to a woman with a dog. The dog began coughing, so the lady said, “Excuse me, sir, but could you please put out your cigar? It’s really bothering my dog.”
He angrily replied, “No, I won’t! You shouldn’t have a dog on this flight anyways!”
“This is a non-smoking flight! You need to put that cigar out!” she said. They argued back and forth… get rid of the dog, put out the cigar, and so on.
Finally, the man said, “Look, I’ll compromise with you. If you get rid of your dog, I’ll get rid of the cigar.” HE was thinking, “She’ll never want to give up her dog.” But much to his surprise, she agreed to the deal!
The lady opened the window (amazingly, without causing the air pressure inside the plane to drop) and threw her dog out. The man, thinking that he had another cigar anyways, threw his cigar out the window, thinking that he had won.
However, the woman suddenly reached out the window, and grabbed her dog’s leash! As she pulled the dog back in, she was thinking that she’d won, but do you know what the dog had in its mouth?