What is Happiness?

Rich Habits
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Happiness is very subjective. What makes me “happy” might not make you “happy”. Also, how I define happiness may be different than how you define happiness.

Happiness, therefore, is a very difficult topic for anyone to tackle.

One of the many data points I gathered as part of my my five-year study on the habits of the rich and poor included happiness.

And, thanks to my research, I believe I have cracked the code on exactly what happiness is, how to produce it and how to maintain a constant, happy state of mind.

Happiness is really two things:

  1. Short-Term Happiness and
  2. Long-Term Happiness.

Short-term happiness is the result of short-term gratification, pleasure, rewards, events, social interactions and any number of experiences in our lives that give us an immediate, albeit, temporary boost in dopamine and serotonin (happiness neurotransmitters).

This type of happiness is fleeting. It is also the type of happiness most pursue and accept as the definition of happiness.

Long-term happiness is the result of fulfillment. This type of happiness is only achieved through the pursuit of things that are fulfilling. Examples include:

  • Raising a happy, loving, successful family
  • Building a business you love
  • Pursuing something you are passionate about
  • Pursuing a dream or the goals behind that dream
  • Maintaining and growing long-lasting positive relationships
  • Service to Others – Helping improve the lives of others through the work that you do or by volunteering
  • Growth Habits – Engaging in daily activities that result in continuous growth and learning
  • Good Health Habits – Engaging in daily activities that promote good health (eating right and exercising regularly)

If you are sincerely interested in finding long-term happiness, you must pursue things that create a feeling of fulfillment. 

Fulfillment is the only meaningful definition of happiness because it creates a constant state of happiness, rather than the short-lived one most individuals are mistakenly pursuing.

You can only find true happiness by doing those things that create a sense of fulfillment.

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  1. Davene Meehan on September 9, 2021 at 8:24 AM

    Amazing! Who would think one could actually define happiness.

    Short term happiness is fleeting but awesome. Looking at a well kept house and yard. My husband enjoying my cooking. A child bursting into excitement at seeing me. The scale going down. Even someone liking a post.

    Long term happiness is that feeling of a lifetime well spent. Not without mistakes, but as Tom said–good family, good career choices, good friends, good goals. The feeling that while I don’t know everything–every day is better than the day before in terms of some project accomplished. Todays mini goal–get siding for front of garage–which leads to garage getting finished–which leads to moving in with dad–which leads to building a log cabin–which leads to…

    My mantra: everyday something better.

    Friends and family are most important focuses for me. My nation my biggest concern. We ARE getting there. Every day a bit better…

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