Thursday, September 24, 2020

Are you commoditizing yourself?

Sometimes I wonder what the whole point of life is. Is it to make money or to have family or is it simply to live and die? After we die what happens? Is it going to be business as usual for those that are left behind? Will they miss me? If they do, how long will they mourn before they forget and move on with their lives? Outside my immediate family will anybody else miss me, and here I am not talking about the mortgage people or the many businesses of which I am a customer.

What is the point of life, seriously? Some say that it is to make a difference in the lives of others. They say that it is to love, to serve and contribute something of significant value to humanity. But then I ask myself who is humanity and by whose standards do we measure significance?
Above all how are we to decide that what we are contributing is of significant value to the people around us? The questions just keep on coming, with each question leading to another. That’s when I hit upon something that seemed to appease my appetite for answers, but funny the answer that I got was in the form of a question.

The question was, “What makes us different from all other species in this green planet we call home?” The answer was our thinking, the fact that we can think, choose our beliefs, philosophies and our attitudes whereas animals depend on their instincts; instincts that they neither have the power nor the desire to question. They just live in accordance.

So if animals have their instincts for survival and we have our mind as a tool for survival then what is the use of our minds? Is it not to supply us with ideas that we can use to survive our environments? If that is the case then why do we spend so much time doubting our own ideas? Why are we almost always tempted to believe that the ideas that come from others are much more superior to our own and much more relevant to our lives?

Is it because we deem ourselves to be lesser beings than those whose ideas we adopt so readily even though with hindsight they are almost always devoid of relevance? If we adopt other people’s ideas and cultures about what life is and how it should be lived doesn’t that make us dependent on their ideas for our own survival? If it makes us dependent upon their ideas for our own survival doesn’t that in effect turn you and me into intellectual parasites?

As an individual how often do you think about what life is and what you deem as important in life? How many times have you let other people supply you with ideas and answers to questions that you should answer yourself? Of the times you have let that happen how many times have you found out later that the answers that you hoped were right didn’t actually sit well with you even though everyone endorsed them?

To go back to our original question about the point of life, having said what I said, wouldn’t you then at least partially agree with me that the point of life to use your mind is the thing that makes you human and not an animal? But how and in what way and for what purpose do I use my mind? I may hear you ask?

The answer to that is to use your mind for problem solving purposes, look at the problems and challenges that you encounter or if you want to serve humanity the problems and challenges that your part of the community encounters. Then come with a solution that will solve that challenge or set of challenges.

Most people tend to think that applying their minds means that they should ask themselves how they can make money in the quickest possible way. That is one way but that is not unique because 99.9 % of the people are thinking the same regurgitated thought anyway and they keep coming up with the same regurgitated answers that if acted upon reduce you to a cheap commodity. To command a preemptive advantage in any sphere of life requires that you think originally. Make no mistake money has its place but if money is your goal then you cannot seek it directly because the way I see it, money is a medium of exchange that can only be earned through the exchange of something more valuable than money itself. Therefore if it is money you want then you must start by thinking originally and in way that cannot be easily copied or commoditized.

To dramatize my point. How many people do you know in your neighborhood that started selling airtime the minute one of your neighbors started selling airtime? How many of them do you know that went into the same copy cat business the minute they saw someone set up shop? Do you realize now that the only real advantage you have is to rely on your talents to create an edge for yourself in the market place of life? Why? Because God does not mass produce talent, what he has given you is so unique you are the only one that probably has it in your generation. This is where the use of your mind comes in, to apply your mind to identify an underserved niche in your community and to apply your talents for problem solving purposes while fulfilling the needs of that niche. That is the sort of thing that makes you indispensable.

Do not copy others and reduce yourself into parasite in the process, if anything at least let them copy you. You can emulate others, and model them but do not copycat them. Think about life, what it means, how you think it should be lived and then go out and live your life by design. Your original ideas will not be popular because they are not meant to be for the masses but for you. Maybe if you and I can do that we will find fulfillment and joy that is unknown to most people because we will then have a unique advantage that they don’t have, the advantage of being ourselves and of contributing something we can call our own, our ideas.

Lets Sithole is speaker, author and entrepreneur. To receive his free ebook “Maximum Motivation in Minimum Time” send a blank email with MMMT as a title to [email protected] He invites you to join him on facebook and to follow his blog at

Lets Sithole – 71649959
“Opportunities multiply as you seize them.”
Agenda31 (Pty) Ltd
Tel: +267 3121105
Fax: +267 3121528


Read this week's paper

Masisi creates his own “deep state”?

The government enclave is discussing a new law that will expand the president’s overreach and make it easier for the Directorate of...