Channel surfing

There is always something better

Words by The Minimalists

We’re always seeking something better.
Something nicer, faster, newer, sleeker, bigger.
Something more. Something else. Some thing.

The remote control made this search easier than ever: we can navigate a thousand channels without leaving the couch, flipping through channel after channel until we find something more desirable. But we don’t know what we’re searching for. So we persist.

Television isn’t the only place we “channel surf”: we dig through every aspect of our lives—food, relationships, entertainment, work—hoping to unearth anything other than what’s in front of us.

Our problem is, in a world of unlimited choices, there actually is always something better somewhere. So, even when we pinpoint something we enjoy, it’s never enough, and we yearn for something superior. It’s consumerism’s paradox: that which makes us happy soon brings us discontent.

The key to overcoming this cycle is simple: we must be happy with the channel we’re watching. If we’re not, we should change the channel. But once we locate a station we like, we should stick with it, enjoy it a while, and let go of the need to endlessly pursue the happiness that’s already in front of us. We can enjoy this life in this moment, and eventually the channel will change on its own.

The Minimalists

The Minimalists are American authors, podcasters, filmmakers, and public speakers Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus. The duo began pursuing the minimalist lifestyle in 2010. After experiencing significant improvements in their quality of life as a result of adopting and practicing the tenets of minimalism, the pair launched a website in December 2010 to share their experiences. Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus help over 20 million people live meaningful lives with less through their writing, podcast, and documentary.


Our Book, Inside Minimalism Vol.1

A collection of 50 short and relatable essays on simple living by a small team of writers from different backgrounds, but who all share a deep appreciation for minimalism as a way of life. This book covers many topics such as slow and quiet living, curation, consumerism, and family. It is not a strict guide book or a rule book. Rather, it is a book we hope will inspire, motivate, and encourage you to take a slow and simplified approach to life.

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