The Builder’s High

The Builder’s High:

What’s the last thing you built when you got that high? You know that high I’m talking about? It’s staring at a thing that you brought into the world because you decided it needed to exist.

For me, the act of writing creates the builder’s high. Most pieces are 1000+ words. They involve three to five hours of writing, during which I’ll both hate and love the emerging piece. This is followed by another hour of editing and tweaking before I’ll publish the piece, and the high is always the same. I hit publish and I grin. That smile is my brain chemically reminding me, Hey, you just added something new to the world.

Is there a Facebook update that compares to building a thing? No, but I’d argue that 82 Facebook updates, 312 tweets, and all those delicious Instagram updates are giving you the same chemical impression that you’ve accomplished something of value. Whether it’s all the consumption or the sense of feeling busy, these micro-highs will never equal the high when you’ve actually built.

So so true. Even something as simple as learning to cook a new dish has a more nourishing effect in the ways that matter.

- Max Tatton-Brown

January 4th, 2014