My last posted ended with the question: if we can choose to be happy no matter our circumstances, what motivation does that leave us to improve our lives?
Personally, I have realized that I’ve been stuck on this question for several years now, and it has impacted decisions I have made in my life. I’m still trying to fully sort out the answer for myself, but one of the things I’ve realized is that there is a problem with the ways we discuss happiness and the language used to do so. To move our discussion along, I believe it’s important to think about why happiness can be so difficult to discuss. I’ve outlined five main reasons this discussion is so difficult:
- Short vs. Long Term Happiness
- Conceptual vs. Physical Happiness
- We Aren’t Good At Predicting What Will Make Us Happy
- We Aren’t Sure We Want To Be Happy
- We Don’t Have A Quantitative Way of Measuring Happiness
Over the coming weeks, I will take the time to consider each of these reasons in more detail, and I hope you will join me on this journey and spend some time reflecting on these with me. For me, this is the clearest example of a philosophic question that has and will have direct, tangible results on both the path and the quality of my life.
To get us started, I have a survey that I would really appreciate some feedback on. Submissions are anonymous!