Thursday, January 27, 2011

What is Happiness?

Well here is my favorite topic again...happiness.

Oprah did a show today about happiness, one thing that was inspiring is that people were surveyed and it was found that people who make $75,000 are just as happy as people who make a million dollars.  Somehow they found that it really doesn't matter how much money you have.

They said if you had $75,000 and a family of four, you would be just fine, happy in fact.  Doesn't that seem a little less than you thought?  I always thought a family of four these days requires quite a bit more.  But apparently as long as all the essentials of life are covered, you will be happy.    

I guess we could have all theoretically known  that, but when it comes to reality, to really understand that it doesn't matter how many things we have or how big our house is or how new our car is, well I think that I would be happier if I had the money to spend right now on an Ipad.

I don't know why I think this particular "thing" will make me happy when I know that nothing I own in particular, including the very machine that I use every day, this computer, really makes me happy.  I don't know what I would do without this machine, but I would live.  I could write with a pen, you know.  I could use the library computers.

There was a time I did not have a lap top and I used to write in journals and then use the library computer at school to complete my work.  I think, just maybe, I was just as happy then.  I would walk around and feel like I was free and could write anywhere.  I would literally sit in the middle of Macy's in New York, my favorite place to be, and just look around at all the beautiful clothes and it would inspire me to write in my journal.

I didn't need a machine then, it didn't even occur to me that I did.

In the study that Oprah was talking about, they found that Special Education teacher's were the happiest out of all people in any profession.  They found that anyone who spends at least eight hours a day with some kind of social interaction is happier.

Those teachers don't make very much money.  However, they are probably fulfilled because they are really helping those kids.  And when one of them really learns something, it must be the most satisfying feeling.

The things that really matter are as follows according to Oprah: 

Did I marry the right person? Do I like my work?  Where do you live?  Are you connected to your community? 

Showing up once a month to club is equal to the doubling of your income in terms of happiness.

Isn't that crazy, that doing something so little can boost your level of happiness so much.  They say it is because you are getting to know new people and expanding your social circle. 

The survey that they did also says that getting to know your neighbors is really important, in fact it says that those who know their neighbors are generally happier. 

Also, finally, the study suggests that the more sex you have on a regular basis can really influence how happy you are. 

The great thing about this study is that none of things that we often think we want, material things, are a factor in our true happiness.  That means that almost anyone can be happy.

That means that you or I can be happy.


1 comment:

  1. Most of us think that our happiness is actually depends on fulfillment of our desires, our level of materialistic achievements.

    I personally do not think that money and material gains play any role towards happiness, although they do play a role in fulfilling our duties towards our family, friends and society.

    On a personal level I am more happy when I am alone, I am delighted when I am able to do what I want to do and it does not necessarily mean to be something related to my career, business.

    Things that are close to our heart, which I feel are more artistic, human make us happy.

    I've read some of your posts here and can now conclude that you too drive happiness/satisfaction/peace of mind from writing.