Science Shows What You Think Will Make You Happy Probably Won’t

Written by on November 30, 2017 in Psychology-Psychiatry, Sci-Tech, Science with 0 Comments
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

If you’re like most people, you probably think you know what makes you happy. Unfortunately, science says there’s a good chance you don’t.

When asked if they think they’d be happier winning the lottery or becoming paraplegic, most people quite understandably respond that they’d be happier with all that money and no handicap.

Still, real life statistics show that one year after winning the lottery or losing the use of their lower body, people in both these groups are equally happy. Yes, really, EQUALLY.


When estimating our happiness, we humans tend to engage in something called “impact bias” where we overestimate the actual effect that different outcomes will have on our life.

Dan Gilbert the speaker on this video and the author of “Stumbling on Happiness,” claims we humans are happiness synthesizing machines. This means we can create happiness out of any situation, so the actual things that happen in our life; the real outcomes we get, are not as important to our happiness as we think they are.

What is “synthetic happiness?” Gilbert says “real happiness” is what happens when we get what we want and synthetic happiness is what we create when we don’t get what we want.

It’s a great theory. I love it. But I’m not a fan of the name. What Gilbert is calling “synthetic happiness” is what I might call “soul growth” or “spiritual happiness”, because when we don’t get what we think we want, we are forced to grow from the inside out. We are pushed into a position where we need to evaluate our outcome and change our behaviors (or at least own that we don’t want to engage in the behaviors we believe will get us what we think we want). Out of this, we get a deeper sense of self and others and we course correct in ways that make us — well, happier.

Gilbert mentions the fact that our love grows when we consciously choose one thing over another. That’s conscious growth. Choosing to love, and to have that love deepen. It’s the opposite of waiting for some passing emotion to come and grab us. It’s the cultivation of love and appreciation.

From my experience as a yoga teacher and life coach, the biggest gifts of our lives come from the times when we don’t get what we want. A disappointing experience forces us to re-evaluate and to evolve. And perhaps, that’s the reason we’re really here — to grow — and to serve others out of our own growth. Oh, and of course, to find a deep happiness (even a sense of fulfillment) from our growth and service.

Watch the enlightening and entertaining Ted Talk by Dan Gilbert above and learn about how you pursue happiness both consciously or unconsciously. It just may make you grow a little bit.

vicki howieVicki Howie is the Creator of Chakra Boosters Healing Tattoos™ (find out what inspired her to create them here). Check out her new book “The Key to Your Chakras” here on amazon.com. Vicki is also the Creator of Chakra Love and the Chakra Life Cycle System®, as well as the Co-Editor of Conscious Life News. You can visit her website chakraboosters.comfacebook page and youtube channel for lots of free chakra info and gifts. Vicki’s biggest joy is to help you unleash your full chakra power and step into your highest potential.

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Subscribe

If you enjoyed this article, subscribe now to receive more just like it.

Subscribe via RSS FeedConnect on YouTube

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

FAIR USE NOTICE. Many of the stories on this site contain copyrighted material whose use has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making this material available in an effort to advance the understanding of environmental issues, human rights, economic and political democracy, and issues of social justice. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of the copyrighted material as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law which contains a list of the various purposes for which the reproduction of a particular work may be considered fair, such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. If you wish to use such copyrighted material for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use'...you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. And, if you are a copyright owner who wishes to have your content removed, let us know via the "Contact Us" link at the top of the site, and we will promptly remove it.

The information on this site is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for professional advice of any kind. Conscious Life News assumes no responsibility for the use or misuse of this material. Your use of this website indicates your agreement to these terms.

Paid advertising on Conscious Life News may not represent the views and opinions of this website and its contributors. No endorsement of products and services advertised is either expressed or implied.
Top

Send this to friend