WHAT MAKES US HAPPY? BY JOSH BUCKINGHAM

In TEEN WRITERS by Josh Buckingham0 Comments

image1 (2)Happiness is the definition of a good life containing freedom from suffering, and the enjoyment of well-being, joy, prosperity and pleasure. Defining happiness can seem as elusive as achieving it. We want to be happy, and we can say whether we are or not, but can it really be defined, studied and measured? And can we use this. Psychologists say yes, and that there are good reasons for doing so. Positive psychology is the scientific study of the strengths and virtues that enable individuals and communities to thrive.

These researchers’ work includes studying strengths, positive emotions, resilience, and happiness. Their argument is that only studying psychological disorders gives us just part of the picture of mental health. We will learn more about well-being by studying our strengths and what makes us happy. The hope is that by better understanding human strengths, we can learn new ways to recover from or prevent disorders, and may even learn to become happier. Researchers can distinguish between the moment-by-moment feelings of happiness produced short-term by positive emotions and how we describe our whole lives when we think about it.

Regardless of whether you had a good day or not, do you describe your life as a happy one? Or yourself as a happy person? One psychologist claims there are two types of happiness: experiencing self is the short-term form of happiness. And remembering self is the long-term form. Psychologists study both to better understand how daily experiences add up to a happy since happiness is so subjective to both current and long-term situations, can it really be measured and studied scientifically? Researchers say yes. They believe that we can reliably and honestly self-report our state of happiness and the increases and decreases in happiness. After all, isn’t our own perception of happiness what matters? And if we can report it, scientists can measure it. Some psychologists compare this to optometry, to do with opticians: treating eye diseases+ doing eye tests: Optometry is another one of those sciences that is built entirely on people’s reports of subjective experience. The one and only way for an optometrist to know what your visual experience is like is to ask you, does it look clearer like this or click click, like.

If you’ve been looking for happiness, the good news is that your choices, thoughts and actions can influence your level of happiness. It’s not as easy as flipping a switch, but you can turn up your happiness level.  Here’s how to get started on the path to creating a happier you:

1. Invest in relationships

Surround yourself with happy people who enjoy the same type of things as you. Being around people who are content buoys your own mood. And by being happy yourself, you give something back to those around you. Friends and family help you celebrate life’s successes and support you in difficult times too. Although it’s easy to take friends and family for granted, these relationships need nurturing to enjoy them.

2. Be yourself, but improved

Research has shown that people who drop everything in their lives to try and chase happiness are generally less happy than those who don’t. Whilst excessive wealth is also not considered a good road to happiness, it’s important that you keep your sense of who you are and what you enjoy doing. Don’t follow the crowd in doing something if it’s not what you feel like doing, but make sure you maintain relationships with at least a few different people as mentioned in 1. A sense of humor is also essential for happiness: it’s the best way to deal with pain or unfairness, which you will likely encounter at some point whatever you do.

3. Smile on

Whatever you do and however bleak things look, remember that happiness can be found even in small things if you enjoy them. Make certain you have a hobby or interest you can go to or occupy your time with at any time. Don’t forget thar a place like this, be it a sports club or an online chat group, is also often where you can find friends similar to you who can help you along with your life as well. Even once the day is over and you’ve had fun at school or work, isolation can be damaging if you don’t have anything else to do.

About the Author
Josh Buckingham

Josh Buckingham

I am a student, and I love badminton, pc-games and reading.

Photo by Cheryl Holt, USA

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