are you a consumer or producer?

I saw someone tweeted this, and it kind of made me think is there a difference of the level of happiness between a consumer and producer. Since I have nothing much to do, I ended up ‘philosophizing’ about it.

It reminds me about my own made-up theory that people who ‘create’ are happier and live a longer life. My theory was based on a not-so scientific study. =) I met a dressmaker who is already 80+ year-old but she can still sew and pretty much active. Then, she told me she also has another relative who is the same age as hers who is also a dressmaker. And, she has the aura of having lived a full life.

And, so I notice that people who are into creating are happier and are more interesting bunch — like the chef to his specialty, the artist to his abstract painting, the crafter to his handmade stuff, programmer to his software, teachers to his students, doctors to treating the sick. Producer does not necessarily refer to someone creating something physical/material. It can also be making someone happy, or making someone better, making others awe, etc.

Therefore I conclude that being a ‘producer’ is one of the ways to achieve fulfillment, happiness, that cheesy warm feeling.

I guess that’s probably why photography is addictive because you’re creating something beautiful. Plus with DSLRs, it’s like instant gratification. With just a click, you create something beautiful. Please correct me if this not the case because I’m no photographer.

Then there’s another side of photography that can make people happy, which brings me to the other part of this post — consuming. Oh those DSLRs and lens and gadgets – I’m not sure what photographers find in them but they certainly make them giddy like little kids in a candy land.

Speaking from my own experience, being a ‘consumer’ is also another way of achieving happiness. You know how we become happy with just the thought of going to the mall, even just window-shopping — just thinking and looking at the displays even without buying can make us happy. How we are happy with the thought that maybe one of these days we could afford the mall, or the online stores, displays.

There is even a science for consuming — retail therapy.  

I think we are all both consumers and producers.
* But maybe there’s a difference on the frequency of activities — there are more as consumer and less as producer or vice versa or equal.
* There can also be the bunch who consume to produce — like dressmaker buying a sewing machine, photographer buying dslr, etc. They consume stuff based on what they produce.
* And, we can’t deny that there are probably just consumers, same that there are mainly producers.

To be pilosopo about, which is more fulfilling — producing or consuming? Which is easier to achieve? Which is more natural human instinct? Like we go to the mall, and get happy just looking at the thought of buying the displays. But do we go to the mall, and get happy thinking about what we can produce out of the displays?

But we can also add to the list another activity that can make us happy — sharing. Your creation becomes more meaningful when you share it. And, you know how as much as we are happy to buy for ourselves, we are also extra happy of buying for others, gifts and such.

So I guess whichever side of the camp you are, as long as you do not forget to share — there is no question you will not feel fulfillment. Of course, unless you’re being fake about your sharing.