We've been working to be lazy our entire existence. Now we're shooting ourselves in the foot.
It made sense to work toward laziness maybe 300,000 years ago when we started using fire. As Yuval Noah Hurari writes in the book Sapiens, "Whereas chimpanzees spend five hours a day chewing raw food, a single hour suffices for people eating cooked food." Using fire was literally a time management system. Plus, Hurari says some scholars think that this shift to a home-cooked meal could account for our bigger brains. Because both are intestines and brains are "massive energy consumers" and "it's hard to have both".
Fast-forward to the industrial revolution. Fast-forward to the internet. Work is being chopped up left and right. We've kicked back far enough to force machines to do all the heavy lifting.
Now we're too good at being lazy. Yes, we still go to work, but it's lazy work. We've gone from tilling the fields to typing with our fingers. We find the most efficient way to get things done and pass the time, so we can go home and be lazy in a different way. And it's not our fault, it's in our genes. It's what our ancestors always wanted - pad thai delivery to our warm sofa and a marathon of Game of Thrones, far away from real-life soldiers and predators.
But now our problems are different. Food is so quick and available, we're barely digesting. Entertainment is so addicting we're satisfied alone with our screens. Without purpose, we're losing people to suicide. We're threatening our own home with the way we live and the effect on the planet.
Laziness has been the dream all along, but it feels like it's time to wake up and go back to work.