24 Apr Boost your happiness in 5 simple steps…
via The Guardian by Emma Cook
From a young age we are told to aim high. Yet the more driven we are, the more likely we are to feel miserable, says happiness expert Raj Raghunathan. Here’s what we should try instead.
The key to happiness, according to the latest research, is knowing where to look. We’re conditioned from a young age to aim high and seek fulfilment in a better job, fresh achievement and further success – and yet these goals are more likely to make us miserable. If we’re driven, it may hold us back, says Dr Raj Raghunathan at the University of Texas. His research shows that supposedly successful and “intelligent” people don’t make life choices that lead to happiness. He noticed that after a reunion with his PhD class, the more visible their achievements – work promotions, pay rises, fancy holidays and bigger homes – the more unfulfilled and distracted they seemed overall.
As a result he started to research why certain psychological traits – the desire to control, to feel important, needed and wanted – are the very ones that can get in the way of our wellbeing. He identifies five key areas that can have a huge effect on our wellbeing – all of which are within our control.
Don’t pursue happiness
It’s a bit of a balancing act but we need to prioritise rather than chase happiness. The difference is crucial. Many of us believe, in theory, that it’s important and rank it above being intelligent and making money, and yet in reality we sacrifice happiness for other things. Take steps to increase the odds of feeling happy rather than obsessing about whether or not you feel happy.
First steps Recognise what makes you happy – hanging out with friends, visiting the countryside, getting a good night’s sleep. Whatever it is, make a list and prioritise those things…
…keep reading the full & original article HERE