It already is well established that in order for babies to achieve the best growth and development, breast feeding for at the very least the first six months of life is beneficial.
Alright, alright, yes I am a guy, but I had to watch my ex wife breast feed our four children — three boys and a girl (note there was no advantage or perversion in this, we were married at those points in time). When you have had that much exposure to breast feeding, inclusive of feeding of your child yourself with bottles containing expressed breast milk (I sometimes was obligated to watch to demonstrate I cared about all of the stress involved in ensuring our children were well fed), you have earned the right to use the words breast feeding and breast milk.
But then I digress.
When breast feeding is done naturally, there is added advantage of emotional bonding between mother and child. Regardless of presence or absence of emotional bonding, placing of breast milk in bottles, and feeding of breast milk to babies is sufficient for achievement of growth and development objectives of ante natal nutrition.
Quite naturally, the dual of beneficence of breast feeding for achievement of proper ante natal development is the realization that feeding of artificial milk to babies prior to attainment of six months of age does not enable the best growth and development. Feeding of the same quantity of artificial milk or breast milk to babies then does not produce exactly the same developmental outcomes. In so far as the first six months of ante natal life are concerned, we conclude that relative to artificially produced milk, breast milk is of a higher intrinsic quality.
Quantity of nutrition is not as important for growth and development as quality of nutrition.
Consider Education. In well developed economies, people pivot out of formal College Education driven systems into artisan training, farming, technician certifications etc. with confidence in their dearth of intrinsic resources for additional formal education, and confidence in their capacity for success in chosen field of endeavor.
For people who pivot out of formal education systems in context of acute self awareness, more formal education (increase in quantity) is regarded not to be a good decision. While they dropped out of formal education in course of MBA programs, Bill Gates and Michael Dell are good examples of the fact that self awareness with respect to objectives of formal education is more important than quantity of formal education.
Quantity of formal education is not as important as objective of formal education. Knowing why you seek more of formal education is more important than acquiring more of formal education.
Consider Counseling. For psychologists, more sessions means more engagements, more opportunities for studying of other people, more money.
For counselees (people counseled), more sessions mean ‘problems not yet solved’, more secrets to disclose, less money in the bank.
Viewed in context of incentives, clearly incentives of psychologists totally are out of whack with incentives of counselees. It does not appear, however, as if society has thought this through, come up with wedges that ensure dichotomy of incentives does not induce abuse of counselees. While it is true counselees can in many cases withdraw from counseling at their discretion, it is not clear stated course of action always is feasible, defensible.
If psychologists are not paid per session or per hour, if it is possible to innovate compensation schemes that do not provide incentives for unnecessary prolonging of number of sessions, society will be the much the better for it.
Note here that prolonging of sessions is not just a matter of money, but a matter of psychologists’ desire for arrival at new insights into behaviors of fellow humans. The counselee is both a patient and for lack of a better term (no pun intended), a ‘guinea pig’. A psychologist has incentive to increase number of sessions merely for the possibility of production of an insight into human behavior. Introduction of ‘counseling insight milestones’ perhaps can help mediate the decision as to whether there is need for more sessions, or time for truncation of sessions.
Number of counseling sessions does not equate to effectiveness of counseling sessions. Psychologists have incentive to increase number of sessions it takes to arrive at any milestone. Quantity of sessions does not imply quality.
Consider Height. Suppose a child rather would become a soccer player than a basketball star. If this child were to grow to be more than 6 feet 2 inches tall, probability of becoming a good soccer player becomes low — the center of gravity of the boy’s body becomes too high for effectiveness at playing soccer. Some of the best strikers in soccer, not very tall. None of Messi, Ronaldo, Bergkamp, Pele, nor Henry, can be regarded to be very tall. Tall and big strikers who anchor an offense (Lukaku, Costa), as opposed to being specialists at using their height advantages (Peter Crouch, Giroud), few in number. Very few defenders if any are more than 6 feet 2 inches tall. Some of the best midfield players (Drogba, Gerrard, Lampard, De Bryune, Zico), middling heights at best.
Importance or lack thereof of height? Same goes for tennis. While becoming taller than 6 feet 2 inches is good for awesome first or second serves, if those serves get returned — and the best of tennis players typically are able to do so — the height easily becomes a disadvantage.
When it comes to sports, taller (more height) is not necessarily an advantage.
I could go on and on, but essence of all of the illustrations is clear, which is, ‘more is not necessarily better than less’. In life, quality (appropriateness) always is more important than quantity.
So then, are you chasing quality, equivalently appropriateness, or are you stuck on quantities?