Monday, July 18, 2011

Creating a Happy Life

In Daniel Gilbert's book, Stumbling on Happiness he says that humans are lousy at predicting what will bring us joy. His research has taught us that there are many factors that create a sense of well-being.  Here is a summary of his findings:

Commitment: People who commit to relationships are happier than those who don't. When people commit to something that's expensive or difficult to get out of, they report feeling happier.

Little Things: Worry less about finding large sources for joy and instead find a steady stream of small sources. When good things happen a lot, over time it changes your life.

Hang in There: He tells people who have experienced hardship to just hang on. Let time do what time does well. You'll be surprised in a year how much better you are.

Go to Church (or somewhere): Church goers are happier than non-church goers but not for reasons people expect. The feeling of being a part of a community brings us joy.

Giving: Those who spend money on others are the happier than those who don't.

Investment in Experiences: Create lasting memories with someone. When we are connected well with others we feel most happy.

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