Monday, April 12, 2010

Happiness – 10 Key Things We Know

Having looked at history and done theory on happiness in recent blogs, here’s a top 10 from Dr Mike Pratt to pin to your wall:
  1. Progress towards meaningful goals using ‘signature strengths’ contributes significantly to happiness.
  2. Happy people take time to do things that give them pleasure.
  3. Quality time with friends and family is top of the happiness list.
  4. Doing altruistic things for others creates enduring happiness.
  5. Expressing gratitude enhances your own wellbeing and that of the recipient.
  6. People quickly adapt to material advances.
  7. Beyond satisfaction of needs, more money does not make people significantly happier.
  8. Positive experiences tend to provide more enduring happiness than tangible purchases (social benefits).
  9. We get little enduring pleasure from short cuts.
  10. Regular exercise increases happiness.
A conversation and buzz around happiness is innately optimistic, healthy, and I think the more inquiry the better. Here's a recent take from the New York Times 17 March Talk Deeply, Be Happy? by Roni Caryn Rabin about the work of University of Arizona psychologist Matthias Mehl which starts with the question: “Would you be happier if you spent more time discussing the state of the world and the meaning of life — and less time talking about the weather?”