Happiness Stock Take
I’m going to start with the assumption that people want to be happy (except maybe goths and Mrs Doyle from Father Ted),
and we’ve been thinking hard about what that actually means
The problem is – if you’re not FEELING happy – then actually a lot of the rhetoric about happiness, is frankly bloody irritating.
The memes, the self-help books, the programmes, the rainbows and unicorns…
To focus JUST on the positive emotions and characteristics of life could be seen to diminish or negate the other, just as important, stuff.
‘Thinking positive’ and ‘looking on the bright side‘ is sometimes JUST the ticket.
There is some evidence that adopting this approach will bring you more happiness.
But emotions MUST be seen in the whole – you can’t just pluck out the ones you like the look of – or it’s essentially constructing a tissue-thin wall that one disappointment or obstacle will send you smashing through.
Let’s get realistic.
- Your path in life won’t always be clear and decisions won’t always come easily.
- You won’t be in a constant good mood.
- Someone or something else is not the key to your happiness.
- There isn’t a magic a formula that will make you happy.
- Not everyone will like you all the time.
And that’s not depressing.
That is HUGELY liberating.
Because once you get that – really GET that – the game changes.
This isn’t cynicism – this is wisdom.
And above everything else – cultivating wisdom (and all the perspective, understanding, patience, kindness that goes with it) is actually the key to happiness.
As unsexy and boring as it sounds.
Psychologist Michael Argyle’s research found that the most important components for happiness are:
- One close relationship.
- A strong network of friends.
- A fulfilling job at a realistic level for your skills. (not too easy, not too hard)
- An absorbing and challenging leisure interest.
Money and even health were less important than these ‘holy 4’ but we would add four more
- finding opportunities to help other people
- doing things that are solely for you
- pushing your personal boundaries
- daily laughter
Have a stock take of those things – is anything missing.
Does this tell you your happiness strengths and weaknesses?
Data is everything – once you have the info, you’ll know what to do next.
Now all you need to do is …
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Best wishes Tanya & Claire
Wise & Gorgeous