Significance of Contentment in the Nigerian Society

Contentment is being happy with the present. It’s respecting the reality of what you have, how far you’ve come and who you are. In Nigeria, it seems that consumerism has eroded the virtue of contentment. Most people in society have the notion that they can achieve happiness only when they have fulfilled some set desires and ambitions. This is rarely the case because most individuals still feel unfulfilled even after ticking off their bucket lists. But in a content society, happiness isn’t determined by the acquisition of material things. Instead, it is by being grateful for the present. This article will highlight the significance of contentment in Nigerian society.

Significance of Contentment in the Nigerian Society

The significance of contentment in Nigerian society will be discussed below:

  • Distinguishes Wants and Needs

In an economic context, wants are those things you might wish to own but can do without. On the other hand, needs are indispensable and crucial to your survival. If you aren’t content, you find yourself preoccupied with acquiring material things that you don’t need. This sometimes leads to increased debt levels, putting in more work hours, borrowing more, and psychosocial problems, among others. But if members of society are content, they will be able to lead healthy and happy lives not dependent on material possessions. Therefore, scarce resources would be committed to things that have direct-use value.

  • Promotes Simplicity in the Society

In a society where contentment is practiced, members of society can discern their wants from their needs. In doing so, members of society are relieved from the burden and stress associated with constantly increasing materialistic possessions. Thus, simplicity is encouraged in society. Therefore, members of society will learn to be happy without depending on acquiring additional possessions or accomplishments. This does not mean contentment is the absence of desire, rather it is the satisfaction of the present condition of one’s life while hoping for the best.

  • Fosters Strong Human Relationships

 In the absence of contentment in society, individuals are constantly in a race to be the best at everything. This drives people to want the best things in life – bigger houses, choice automobiles, better-paying jobs, and so on. Though this desire is not bad, most people achieve these things to the detriment of their relationships. To achieve this, people tend to put in longer hours at work thereby spending less time with their loved ones. Also, most individuals borrow more to fund their consumerism desires. This leads to increased debt levels which usually result in stress, depression, poor moods, and other psychological problems, which affect social interaction.

But when society practices contentment, people will be able to differentiate their needs from their wants and allocate scarce resources to things of direct-use value. Therefore, people will get to spend more time with their loved ones and psychosocial problems associated with consumerism will be averted. In a society where contentment is practiced, people will be able to accept each other for who they are, alongside their flaws. And, relationships will thrive naturally and not be influenced by one’s possession, or lack thereof.

  • Positivity and Peace of Mind are Nurtured

 When you’re happy with who you are and what you have, it proves you are appreciative of the distance you’ve covered thus far. This mindset brings about peace of mind and positivity that spurs growth and personal improvement. And, with personal improvement and peace of mind, you will be motivated to complete the remaining stretch of life’s journey. So, in a society where contentment is practiced, people will be at peace with their current situation and have the positive mindset needed to work towards their ambition.

  • Promotes Happiness

When you allow yourself to be content, it means you are happy with the present. It shows you’re grateful for all you’ve achieved, whether little or in abundance. And, in being content with the present, you accept that there are some things you desire or crave that can wait – until you can do so within your means. Therefore, you can be happy, even when your desires are yet to be fulfilled. This gives you a healthy outlook on life and impacts your immediate community positively. And, if the society is content, the ripple effect will be immense – genuine happiness all over.

  • Discourages Greed 

There is no problem with being ambitious. There is no issue in desiring the best things in life. But unchecked ambition can turn to greed. In lay terms, greed is the intense desire to enrich oneself at the expense of others. It’s an undesirable trait. To achieve set goals, some people resort to dishonest means such as internet fraud, theft, simony, hoarding of materials, misappropriation of public funds, and more.

In a society that practices contentment, greed is discouraged. People are content with what they own and possess. Also, people know what their needs and wants are. They know that true happiness isn’t connected with their possessions or accomplishments. And, they believe in the peace of mind contentment provides. All these attributes of a content society make it difficult for greed to thrive.

  • Promotes Healthy Lifestyle

 When you are content, you are free from dilemmas that are detrimental to your health. As discussed earlier in this article, most people borrow more and work longer hours to fund their lack of contentment. Increased debt levels have been associated with health problems such as depression, poor moods, and stress. On the other hand, putting in long hours at work also has adverse effects both on a person and his loved ones. But in a society that’s content, people will be able to lead more healthy and happy lives. The practice of contentment fuels happiness spurs personal development and builds stronger relationships.


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