Photo by Jeff Sheldon on Unsplash

Consumer vs. Producer— A Change in Mindset That Will Change Your Life

“Every man is a consumer, and ought to be a producer. He is by constitution expensive, and needs to be rich.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

What keeps us from starting that side project? Or from building that company? What keeps us making excuses for why we can’t begin?

Consumer mindset

We are all consumers. We spend our days reading, listening, eating, and buying. We buy things we don’t need to make us happy. A constant consumption of newer and better things. We work to afford the newest clothes, the nice car, the expensive dinner out.

But none of this will add happiness to our lives. True happiness comes from helping others — from carving out our own path. It comes from the confidence gained by knowing that you can succeed in your dream.

As long as you remain only a consumer you will not have the fulfillment you desire. A consumer can never get enough. They can never be truly happy. They will always look at the world through the lens of what they can get from it, instead of what they can give to it.

Producer Mindset

Producers, on the other hand, strive to make something valuable to others. They receive their payment not only monetarily, but through the confidence of self that they don’t require anyone else to survive in this world.

It’s not as hard as you might think. You don’t have to have a large fabrication shop selling millions of items.

You could simply start a blog.

You could put out information that can help others going through the same experiences you’ve gone through. It can be free.

The producer mindset allows you to view the world through the opposite lens. This lens will keep you striving to find new ways to provide value and allows you to see how others are doing the same.

How to start

Most of us get stuck in the consumer mindset because we fear change. We never start because we feel as though we don’t deserve our goals, or that we’ll be unable to achieve them.

At some point you need to say “I’m going to do this. Forget what everyone else says or thinks. I’m going to try.”

That first step is hard. But it’s not as big as you imagine.

We all feel as though everyone is watching, waiting for us to fail. But that’s absolutely not the case.

Take comfort in the fact that everyone else is so consumed with themselves that they are most likely paying no attention to you at all.

You can try. You can fail. It won’t be the end of the world. In fact, it really won’t be that bad at all.

Learn from your mistakes and continue to improve.

Start. Make the mindset switch today. Once you start viewing the world as a producer, it will look completely different to you. Doors will start to open that you never saw before and you can finally begin to live the life of your dreams.

Final Thoughts

While it is impossible not to be a consumer, don’t succumb to the thought that that’s all you are or have to be. Use your hobbies and interests to create something for others. Even if you don’t receive monetary gains from it, producing something has incredible psychological benefits.

Over the past decade psychologists have studied the effects of performing creative acts on everything from mood enhancement to treatments for diseases. It is now a recommended part of any wellness routine.

Do it today. Decide that you will no longer sit on the sidelines. Instead become an active participant in the game of life. You never know who could be waiting for you to come along and make a difference.


Thanks

Thanks for reading! If you like this, please clap or comment or both. I hope this helps helps you to aspire to start that side project, build that company, or write that post!

This story is published in The Startup, Medium’s largest entrepreneurship publication followed by 300,118+ people.

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