Happiness and Goals
“Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.” - Dalai Lama XIV
I’m back to thinking about happiness… Especially when I look at the political and economic climate in the U.S. right now. Everyone wants to be happy – our family, our friends, our neighbors, our political adversaries. We have this in common. But how many of us have looked at what makes us happy beyond things (like new phones) and experiences (like vacations)?
Coaching is all about setting and achieving goals. Have you asked yourself what is driving your goals lately? Is it your values? Your need to prove yourself? Hanging onto a certain identity? Here's the big question: Are your goals leading you to greater happiness and well being?
Sonja Lyubomirsky, a happiness researcher, suggests in her book The How of Happiness that happiness is 50% genetic, 10% life circumstances, and 40% up to you. It’s an often-quoted statistic in positive psychology. I find it reassuring that 40% of how happy we are is within our control. It also suggests that becoming happier might be better sought in how we relate to life, rather than in getting stuff, status, or experiences, not to say that those are things aren't important.
Martin Seligman, a dominant figure in the field of positive psychology, talks about 3 kinds of happiness: Happiness from pleasure, happiness from being fully engaged in an activity, and happiness from using your strengths in the service of something larger than yourself.
Both of these researchers point to the same thing: doing things which are meaningful to you and using your strengths in service of something bigger than you is going to lead to more lasting happiness than increasing your pleasure. For tips and ideas on how to do this, click here.
So go ahead and check in, what is driving your goals? Will that lead to greater happiness for you? If you would like a free consultation to help you get clear on this, simply click here.
All The Best,
Tips and resources to help you on your path.
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