Standard of Living vs Quality of Life

With an ever growing curious ear toward comments about human behavior and the shape of the world today, the word “sustainability” comes up a lot, whether its on NPR news shows, conferences about mind-body-spirit healing, professional journals or magazine articles. The general consensus is that we, as Americans (and everyone we export our lifestyle too around the world) do not live a sustainable life. We use more resources than we have, we consume like crazy and we produce a lot of waste (whether it’s uneaten food or plain garbage.) Contrary to the belief of the popular bumper sticker, he who dies with the most toys DOESN’T win! Sociologists and economists often talk about the “standard of living” which today seems to be associated with wealth and the acquisition of more commercial goods. The term “standard of living” is often used synonymously with the term quality of life, but indeed these are two different things. Semantics aside, quality of life issues deal with basic human needs and many intangible things that money cannot buy (like happiness). In the economic reality we are facing today, many people are seeing a dramatic change in their standard of living, but this doesn’t have to mean a corresponding change in one’s quality of life. You cannot put a price on the quality of life!

• Stress Tip for the Day:
How do you measure your quality of life? What are the intangible things that bring you joy, happiness and peace of mind? What are the aspects of your life that are, indeed, priceless? Quality of life is really about one’s attitude. As the saying goes, “A good day in hell beats a #$%!y day in paradise.” What can you do to improve the quality of your life without opening your wallet? Equally important to ask is this: What parts of your life are not “sustainable” and what can you do to pull in the reins of these behaviors?

• Links Worth Noting:
My friend and colleague, Donna Eden, author of the best seller of the book, Energy Healing has a website and a newsletter. This link will take you to the latest edition of her newsletter. I am big advocate of her work and I hope you get a chance to explore her contributions to health in more detail. She’s awesome!

• Photo of the Day:
Last year, on the recommendation of a good friend, I took a trip to the Grenadines in the Lesser Antillies of the Caribbean. The color of the water here is nothing less than unreal. For a nice summer day like today, I selected this photo (on of my screen savers) to reinforce the idea that aqua blue waters are stunning to look at (and for some add to the quality of life!)

• Quote for the Day:
“When you think of all the synthetic fertilizers, herbicides, fungicides, pesticides, antibiotics and hormones in our foods, it gives a whole new meaning to saying grace before a meal.”
— Brian Luke Seaward

Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D. is an internationally renowned expert in the fields of stress management, mind-body-spirit healing and stress and human spirituality. He is the author of over 10 books including the bestsellers, Stand Like Mountain, Flow Like Water, Stressed Is Desserts Spelled Backward, The Art of Calm, Quiet Mind, Fearless Heart and Managing Stress (6E). He can be reached through his

© Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D.

Brian Luke Seaward

Author Brian Luke Seaward

More posts by Brian Luke Seaward

Leave a Reply