Is There More to Life than Happiness?
Since the rise of the positive psychology movement a decade ago, happiness has been all the rage. But is it something more than having a cheerful personality? And how do we get happiness?
What's the Latest Development?
Though University of Pennsylvania psychology professor Martin Seligman began the positive psychology movement a decade ago, he is still modifying which elements he believes constitute happiness. The latest to be added to the list is 'accomplishment', which occurs when people try to master a skill for their own sake. Seligman calls the first element of happiness 'positive emotion', which has created something of a reaction from those who have watched self-help merchants sell an unattainable, or unhealthy vision of self-aware bliss.
What's the Big Idea?
Other essential elements to Seligman's definition of happiness include 'engagement', which entails being in a state of flow, enjoying one's activities such that a loss of self-awareness occurs. Engaged people, therefore, are aware they were happy only after the fact. 'Meaning' entails belonging to a project or organization that is larger than one's self, submitting the ego to collaborative achievement. Lastly, but not least, is 'positive relationships'. Other people are the strongest antidote to life's downs and the most reliable up.
Photo credit: shutterstock.com
Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.
No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.
A completely unexpected discovery beneath the ice.
- Scientists find remains of a tardigrade and crustaceans in a deep, frozen Antarctic lake.
- The creatures' origin is unknown, and further study is ongoing.
- Biology speaks up about Antarctica's history.
Eight-dimensional octonions may hold the clues to solve fundamental mysteries.
- Physicists discover complex numbers called octonions that work in 8 dimensions.
- The numbers have been found linked to fundamental forces of reality.
- Understanding octonions can lead to a new model of physics.
It's one factor that can help explain the religiosity gap.
- Sociologists have long observed a gap between the religiosity of men and women.
- A recent study used data from several national surveys to compare religiosity, risk-taking preferences and demographic information among more than 20,000 American adolescents.
- The results suggest that risk-taking preferences might partly explain the gender differences in religiosity.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.