Psychological research shows that the harder we strive to be happy, the less likely we are to achieve that goal.
To be honest, I found it hard to get through the article... mostly because "happiness" is an end goal for the lazy. Kinda like "I'll be happy WHEN..." Happiness is only a result of a culmination of many things that are trademarks of a long journey for hardworking people who want to make something of their lives; not the result of pleasure-seeking individuals who think ease is the path to bliss. As they say, it's the journey, not the destination that is most satisfying and fulfilling.
Or did I miss something?
You took the time to look into this and post it and, surprise, surprise, I took the time to read it and reflect on how I feel (and, per usual, make notes – just call me JackNotes). First off, to me, happiness = pleasure. We/I seek to increase my pleasurable experiences and don’t think about a permanent general feeling. At my ‘stage of life’ and experience I think I have learned some things. I have a nice, easy, healthful life and what more could anyone ask. I strive for pleasure in many areas, physical, emotional, social, mental…
Happiness like pleasure is fleeting and comes and goes and is sometimes accompanied by sadness and pain, it’s called real life. ”…it can also seriously backfire for many people. …they may think they should be happy all the time…” the key word is many and it suggests not all.
I agree, the 3 items listed are a set up for disappointment. I also noted that my mother hated to travel because afterward it depressed her to come home and go back to the same, boring lifestyle.
“Self-focus might make me engage with other people less, and I might judge other people more negatively if I perceive them to ‘mess’ with my happiness,” Hmm, interesting in light of some of my comments/postings, don’t you dare step on my bubble. Self-focus, to me, is paramount to self-awareness and inner growth. ”social media makes us especially conscious of other people’s airbrushed lives, potentially increasing our desire to live a happier, more exciting life. He thinks we would be happier if we didn’t look to others to set our standards for what constitutes a good and meaningful life. “ I see this from a different perspective in that the media also shows how people are suffering and desperate. This gives me a perspective of how good I have it and makes me appreciate my good fortune.
I note the comment about exercise to boost happiness. The 10 exercises (mental) are also covered in the “Mind-Body Medicine” lectures by Dr. Satterfield. However, for me I need physical, strenuous exercises and being accompanied by music helps.
‘Grumpelstiltskin’ .”* [bbc.com]
You and probably many on this site have seen my cynical side. I refuse to live life in a bubble (there is a test for ones bubble rating and I did pretty good, meaning my bubble is small) and want to live in the ‘real’ world. Maybe that’s why I keep getting knocked off my path. I do not agree with the anger part and see this as counterproductive. Besides I think the angry part was written before tRump came on the scene.
Good article, but in a way it is an example of what someone said of Henry James' habit of "making mountains out of molehills." Lao Tzu said it much more succinctly way back in the 6th century B.C: "If you look to others for fulfillment, you will never be fulfilled. If your happiness depends on , you will never be happy with yourself. Be content with what you have; rejoice in the way things are. When you realize there is nothing lacking, the world belongs to you." I would also suggest that coming to grips with the truth that it's the journey that matters, and that's another way of saying live the present, the moments. Once one abandons the idea that one should worry about what happened in the past or what MIGHT happen in the future, neither of which we have any control over, the possibility for happiness suddenly becomes a reality.
sitting and watching the birds, squirrels, trees and such can satisfy me much of the time. sure, I can and do go out and engage in other activities for fun and amusement... but it's not really necessary... I can be happy just watching the world go by.
People make me happy. I've got rid of most all the toys etc that I used as subjects of happiness. They didn't work. Problem is that i have good friends but none of them live anywhere NEAR me. Lol. So I live unhappy almost 24/7. Depression has been a constant battle for about 12 yrs now. I stay depressed and unhappy because I am lonely I guess, or alone, or whatever. Lol. I am a runner etc, this activity helps keep my stress and depression at bay. But not for long. Happines. Yes I strive for it. But never seem to acquire it very often.
It's actually very nice when you can afford to do nothing. How do you accomplish that? We all have financial responsibilities. We need to earn money to sustain our basic needs. However, with a little bit of planning and good simple common sense, even a tight budget can permit to allocate leisure time to do just that, absolutely nothing. My point is, you cannot enjoy doing nothing without having done something.... same as, you can't rest if you are not tired to begin with, you can't clean something without having something else messy. Life is about complementary activities. Work versus leisure is one of those.
" Happiness is the absence of striving for happiness" by Zhuangzi. There is a pub in England with a sign above the bar that states: "Free Beer Tomorrow." In over one hundred years of being in business they have never had to give a free beer to anyone, tomorrow never arrives. Postponing your sense or experience of happiness until you achieve this or that degree or goal is no better than living in a fool's paradise..
Every state of being has it's polar opposite, that is, complementary state and is exemplified by the principle of complementarity. Neils Bohr who was a good friend of Albert Einstein understood the principle of complementarity and when he was awarded a Coat of Arms by the Royal Danish Court for his contribution to physics he chose the Chinese Yin Yang symbol
Doing nothing is not merely the absence of outward action but also implies a calm or serene state of mind. If you are sitting in a chair and many thoughts are passing through your mind and you are mulling things over or indulging in imagined states of affairs or scenarios then it cannot be said of you that you are doing nothing.