RIP Philo

Why don't we do our favorite things all the time?

In the book Satisfaction, Gregory Berns argues that too much of a good thing can make it less good. For example, sushi is his favorite food, but if he ate it every day, it wouldn't seem as good. Part of what we crave is variety. So it's not just avoidance of displeasure that keeps us from doing our favorite thing all the time, it's also our craving for variety. I enjoy skiing, but I also enjoy great food, movies, and art museums almost as much. I'd rather spend my life doing some of each of these things, rather than just skiing all the time.

It's an interesting question. A few different responses were given. I'll go with the pain/pleasure ration. Doing something has to have a lot higher pleasure than doing the much easier alternatives. This is rarely true so we get stuck in a narrow band of nothingness.
Permalink son of parnas 
March 20th, 2007 10:26am
This is why I just try to do as little as possible. It makes what little I do so much more exhilirating. Others appreciate it more too!
Permalink JoC 
March 20th, 2007 10:31am
Marginal utility of repeated acts. (No thrill.)

Versus the anxiety-dispelling comfort of the repeated acts in addiction/OCD behavior.
Permalink Send private email sour grape snowflake 
March 20th, 2007 11:02am
Did you say WoW? I could've sworn someone said something about WoW...

Vanguard is sweet.
Permalink JoC 
March 20th, 2007 11:07am
That's why people in a new relationship have sex like rabbits but after a few years in a marriage it goes down to 3 times a week
Permalink Billx 
March 20th, 2007 11:51am
Damn, I guess this girlfriend may be destined... it's pretty much always been about like that.
Permalink JoC 
March 20th, 2007 12:09pm

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