You Need Both Self-Control And Self-Indulgence To Be Happy

You Need Both Self-Control And Self-Indulgence To Be Happy

via Forbes by Alison Escalante

In our never-ending search for happiness, researchers have been focused on self-discipline and grit for a while now. In fact, the discussion has been so dominated by the value of self-control to creating a happy life, that we often need to be reminded about “self-care.” But even self-care has become a kind of work: a vital task to schedule into our high-performance routines. All of this is supposed to lead us to success and happiness. So why does it feel like something is missing?

According to a new study, indulging ourselves sometimes is as fundamental to a happy life as self-control. That means we all need to start having more fun, but according this study that may be harder than we think. The demands of our lives, and by extension our self-discipline, have a way of intruding on our pleasure and distracting us.

Self-control leads to great outcomes.

The researchers behind this study were quick to point out that self-control is important, as anyone raising young children knows. Self-control has a way of keeping us aligned with our long-term goals and has been touted as essential to our success and well-being. A large body of research has found that self-control leads to positive health outcomes. It’s considered key to our all-important self-regulation, which has become a watchword in psychology. Self-control makes us happier, healthier people.

Persistence and self-control matter when we are trying to achieve a goal, like trying to lose weight or succeed in a college class. Do we eat that sugar and relax or do we go work out? Do we go to the party or catch up on the paper that counts for 50% of our grade? We all know what we should do.

Can we have too much self-control?

Is there such a thing as too much self-control? That’s what the authors of this paper at the University of Zurich and Radboud University in the Netherlands wanted to know. They wondered if the dominant narrative about self-control, that it leads to a happy and satisfied life by enabling us to put our goals ahead of momentary pleasure, was the whole story.

“It’s time for a rethink,” says Katharina Bernecker, researcher in motivational psychology at the University of Zurich…

… keep reading the full & original article HERE

#happiness #happy #happier #selfcontrol #psychology #positivepsychology