Rage Against the Status Quo
Status quo is the term we use to describe the way things are—a way of life or a way of doing business that is popularly accepted. While there may be much that is beneficial in our current mode of being, blindly accepting the status quo will doom us to a state of mediocrity. Like it or not, our environment and circumstances are always changing. These environmental and circumstantial changes require us to adapt or be left behind.
The seduction of the status quo is its promise of comfort and ease. There’s no need to struggle if you blissfully inhabit the status quo. “Simply accept the status quo and everyone will get along fine,” or so the herd says. But societies and institutions that blindly accept the status quo stifle growth. This blind acceptance of the status quo is either slipped into by those who are complacent, or it is deliberately enforced by those who benefit from it. From there, the status quo perpetuates itself.
Acceptance of the status quo usually follows a struggle to survive. Once the survival challenge has been overcome, societies or institutions tend to coast and enjoy their well-earned comfort. At this point, the status quo often becomes the highest ideal and the group’s members will do anything to maintain it. Those that challenge the narrative are shouted down, ostracized, or dismissively criticized.
Groups that fall into this trap become stagnant, sluggish. Innovation is criticized. Those who challenge the prevailing dogma are seen as a threat. Risk is strenuously avoided, and ideals are surrendered as the group seeks immediate gratification rather than long-term reward. The status quo will fail the entire group in the long term, and in the short term, will fail those outliers who do not benefit from the status quo.
This is not to say that every belief a society holds is wrong. But old ideas need to be challenged. The challenge may result in a better way of doing things, or it may reinforce the wisdom of the old way of doing things. Either way, the challenge will produce better-educated people who are growing and learning.
In the outdoor gear industry, we frequently see a lethargic acceptance of the status quo. Much of what is portrayed as innovation is gimmicky and serves little practical purpose. Our mission is to break free from that mentality and offer practical solutions to problems encountered by adventurers.
Here at DEFIANT, the status quo is our arch enemy. We refuse to let problems go unaddressed simply because someone else hasn’t solved them. We’re willing to tackle a problem and work through numerous failed experiments, if that’s what it takes, until we solve it. You see, we don’t think that you should pay for sub-par equipment that looks good on the shelf, but falls apart in the field or hinders mission accomplishment.
We invite you to join us in the never-ending quest to surpass the status quo. We encourage you to be inquisitive. Seek deeper answers. When you encounter problems that everyone else accepts as a necessary evil, don’t presume that those problems have to go unaddressed. Find a solution! Innovate, seek creative solutions, and strive to make things better. And whatever you do, don’t be lulled into a life of complacency. The status quo is the easy route, and most people take it. Don’t let the status quo keep you from breaking through mediocrity into a life of excellence.
Photo credit: Simon Steinberger