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The Balance We Should Reverse

By Juanpablo Barrantes

Leader’s Approach

3 min 📖

At the outcast of 2020 I’m spending my vacation time in a paradisiac location. While leisure time evolves I ponder on a singular fact, everyone here belongs into one of the following three gangs:

- those who are doing nothing out of too much (how expensive it is to rest in a place like this!);

- those who are doing something out of something (it seems to me that the crew here is having a good time while working);

and finally,

- those who are doing too much out of almost nothing (I saw a lot of local unemployed people all around selling thrifts and souvenirs with little or no success at all)

I also notice manipulation all around, as a matter of fact in places like this you might fall prey into a kind of manipulative system that subjects everyone to get a “new lifestyle” or more realistic... a vacation package for a price you wouldn’t be willing to pay for instance, however the methods they use are so coldly articulated that you might fall into their psychological and commercial trap without realizing it at all.

And then manipulation keeps going as a norm here... any product or service you ask for, or even you don’t ask for but someone is offering, you will end up extra-paying for it in the form of a tip... a city tour, a drink, whatever you ask for they’ll extra charge you by asking for a tip. Manipulation here adopts the shape of a real necessity: it’s a genuine but cunning claim of those who are doing something out of almost nothing in return for them, so they can round up a more dignifying income, at the expense of those who are doing nothing out of too much, since it’s assumed that if someone is there it’s because you can afford it and therefore you have the "status" and a moral duty to extra-pay for whoever provides a service for insignificant it might be, for something more than what you already paid.

Even so, when I think twice about this situation, almost everything works this way in our glorious capitalist world, amongst so many transactions we should be attentive about those carrying out manipulations implicitly, because in the end you’ll end up obligated, disappointed and even frustrated. On the other hand, not everything it’s too bad, you can also find those rare exceptions when the provision of a service, the acquisition of a product or any simple interpersonal interaction happens under a mystique of authenticity, respect and fairness.

Whenever you’re part of any transaction or interaction which is authentic, respectful and fair: you feel confident about what you’re receiving, it is a feeling about safety that is triggered within yourself because you perceive transparency in the process, and above all you feel certain about what you’ve gotten, since it’s just what you need or even more than what you were expecting so far.

Being aware of such contrasting reality, what remains relevant to me is to always keep in mind that anything you can get from life will eventually get back to you waiting for your contribution back to the world and those around you. In the extent that you are aware of this, but mostly you have the character to join the reduced elite of authentic people, you’ll feel blessed about living in a better world, and also by knowing that the balance between the authentic and the superficial will eventually be reversed.

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