What things symbolize your family and why

9 status symbols that are important to me

"My house, my car, my boat."

People like to show others what they have. It doesn't always have to be as boastful as in the Sparkasse advertising, but it can be one or the other status symbol. We use status symbols to show our place in society. How successful and important are we? Should we be imitated? Who is below us in the hierarchy of life?

One or the other may think that this probably applies to all other people, but certainly not to themselves. But don't fool yourself. Everyone wears symbols that communicate their own status. They can be of a material nature, and thus easy to see through, or a little more subtle.

All status symbols have one thing in common: They are pure inventions of our thoughts. They only work because everyone participates. If so many people didn't believe in the importance of job titles, they wouldn't have one. Even a king can only be king if enough people believe that this is right. Without this belief, any status symbol would be ineffective.

No matter what symbols people around you brag about, you don't have to take any of this seriously - unless you really want to play their game. However, I recommend that you only play the games that you really enjoy.

Common status symbols that are unimportant to me

Status games are nowhere practiced as intensively as at work. There everything degenerates into a symbol: the permanent employment contract, the job title, the salary, the support of a key account, the honorable mention from the manager. As a boss, I was a bit naive at the time and underestimated the importance of these things - especially the job title. These titles still haunt me today. When asked what I do for a living, I answer that I am a blogger. This means that I am at the very bottom of the hierarchy, since the call the blogger profession is worse than the job itself.

Even if bloggers may make little impression compared to traditional professions, there are also status symbols within our industry: visitor numbers, comments, fans. This is how bloggers determine their hierarchy among themselves.

In private life, many material things are status symbols. How big is my apartment, how is it furnished, in which part of town is it located? Or did I even build a house? Wow, a house! The fact that I have been in debt for 30 years because of this is of secondary importance. I have a house! Okay, I don't own any of these myself. I haven't had my own apartment for almost three years (but that will soon change). With people for whom having their own house is the greatest possible status symbol, I'm at the bottom of the hierarchy.

It continues with cars. Every car manufacturer is working on an image that buyers would like to transfer to themselves. Whether I drive an Audi or a Skoda may not make a significant difference in my everyday life - but it does in my status (and my wallet). I also find it fascinating that in Dubai the license plate says something about the status. The fewer digits on the sign, the more expensive it is. And me? I've never owned a car privately and I'm once again far down the hierarchy.

Other material things are also suitable as status symbols, e.g. B. Clothing and accessories. Companies try to attribute this status to their products in order to be able to sell them at high prices. The same applies to gadgets such as smartphones, tablets, laptops, headphones, cameras, etc. I'm often amazed at how quickly new iPhones are spreading, and also to people who I didn't think had 800 euros left over. Apple is the world champion in status sales. I also use the products, but I'm too pragmatic to hang on to. I gave my first-generation iPad as a gift to my grandpa, and at some point I'll replace my four-year-old iPhone with a product that is at most half as expensive. I will only stay with the Macbook as I have got used to the operating system.

This famous saying sums up this madness of material status symbols:

"We buy things we don’t need with money we don’t have to impress people we don’t like."

True words.

Status symbols that are important to me

I would like to say that I do not emulate any status symbols. That I don't care. But then I wouldn't be honest with you and myself. The status symbols mentioned above are not important to me. For that I strive for other things that aren't classic Status symbols are, but they are increasing. I am sharing them with more and more people, and the only reason why they are status symbols is because others join in.

1. time

In the “no time” generation, time has become a precious commodity. Some people are rethinking and prefer to accept a loss of income than not having time for themselves and possibly their families. Admittedly, in my 20s, I still had little understanding for that. But I'm also developing. And lo and behold, with people who value time, even my job as a blogger suddenly has a high status. Today I have more time for myself than ever before. So I can pull off all of the healthy habits that we are writing about here.

2. Independence

My freedom is at least as important to me. I am no longer dependent on any employer and no longer accountable to a key account. Instead, I make a living from hundreds of customers who invest a few euros in my books every month or who buy the products I recommend based on experience. I don't have to bend over, keep deadlines, and don't do anything that I don't like. I am independent in my work - even independent of time and place.

3. Health

Anyone who attaches too much importance to professional status games may bear a burnout like a medal of honor with a proud chest. I could have been a candidate for it a few years ago. Not necessarily for the burnout, but for the pride that I gave everything for my work.

Today I see my health as the higher good. I maintain a healthy diet and invest time and willpower in my fitness. To a certain extent, my health becomes a status symbol for people who would also like to cope with such a change.

4. Significant work

Until a few years ago, the most important thing for me was how much income my work generates. My best bet was to become a multimillionaire. I didn't shake it off completely. I still want to earn good money, because with that I can afford time, independence and the like. But it has become more important to me what purpose my work fulfills. Writing about a healthy lifestyle and helping other people make positive changes gives me more satisfaction than a few extra pounds. This is what other people yearn for, who perish in offices with pointless tasks. So it becomes a status symbol.

5. Values

People who are true to their own values ​​enjoy high status. In principle, anyone could, but it becomes easier when you have worked for independence. Those who depend on other people are subject to conflicts of interest and are less likely to remain true to themselves when in doubt. I can do it better today. Blogging is one of the best models for this, because authenticity is rewarded.

6. Informal education

Education is generally seen as a status symbol. Especially with people with a high level of education. What counts is the university's reputation, the subject studied and the grades achieved. I don't really care (if not as much as I would like). For me, general knowledge about history, politics, economics and world events does not count. I'm way down in this hierarchy.

I'm interested in personal development.I enjoy reading books on a wide variety of subjects. If a topic captivates me or I want to develop myself further in one direction, I read about it until I have enough knowledge to implement my goals. For me, this is part of healthy habits. I want z. B. Not just mimicking the umpteenth diet, but understanding how nutrition works.

7. Minimalism

I don't call myself a minimalist, but in the three years without an apartment I've developed an aversion to things. Whenever I bought something or was pushed onto something, I had to take it somewhere. My backpack was full at some point. I always had to move the rest back and forth between my whereabouts and my parents' attic. That was stressful.

Now I am furnishing my new apartment and I am very careful. I don't want to stuff myself, I want to go shopping. That does not mean that it will be cheap, because it should look good, last a long time and retain its value. It's not about brands. I didn't know any of the brands I've ordered so far.

More and more people feel that way. You feel like it's slow enough is, or that they already have way too much stuff. Hence will Fewer the new status symbol.

8. Travel

Travel can be a status symbol in a number of ways. When my colleagues go to the Baltic Sea and I fly to the Maldives, I set a status exclamation point. Bam!

I hardly care about expensive travel destinations. I'm far too frugal for that. I like it a little more exotic, with a few experiences and it can also be inexpensive. A trip to Thailand costs me less than a vacation on the Baltic Sea. Nevertheless, my travels are also a status symbol. The fact that I travel individually and exotic says something about me. And of course that I am like that much travel. This shows my independence and the time I have for it.

9. Friends

Friends as a status symbol? I wrestled with myself. On the other hand, marriage and children are status symbols for many people and what about Facebook friendships? The absurdly high numbers of 500, 800 or 1,000 friends? These are also statements about a status (like every like).

I don't care how many Facebook friends I have. I even thin them out every now and then so as not to clutter my timeline unnecessarily. I would like to use Facebook less anyway.But quality friendships are important to me. I cannot say that I have the unconditional status here that I would like to have. But I find it worth striving for.

There are nine status symbols that are important to me. I hadn't seen them as symbols before, but if I'm honest they are. It's inevitable. Even the most humble of people send out signals that tell something about their status.

Another less classic, but very modern status symbol is mindfulness. This has many facets. Some pay attention to their ecological footprint by avoiding long-distance travel, not driving a car or using plastic bags. Others do not consume animal products. That may not seem like a status symbol, but in the end it is exactly that. That's the only reason why the vegan joke exists:

“How do you recognize a vegan? - He will tell you. "

Everything we communicate to the outside world are status symbols. They show who we are. And that's totally okay. One symbol is no better than another. There are only symbols that you find important, and symbols that you find unimportant. Orientate yourself to the things that you inspire and do not have any other status symbols imprinted on you - this could otherwise be expensive and stressful.

What are your status symbols?

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