Millions of results when you google happiness

January 8, 2008

I spent a few minutes searching the vastness of the internet this morning and I’m not sure why I am surprised at the millions of results found under happiness.

There is research on happiness, books on happiness and there are happiness quizzes (if you took a quiz and the results showed you were more or less happy than you thought, would that change how happy you felt?)

I read an op-ed piece from the NY Times about whether or not the government should have policies to increase the happiness of the citizens. (Yikes! What are the chances they would get that right?)

There is even a band named The Happiness. (I didn’t click through to hear their music. I was concerned that I might not like it and that might make me less happy. 🙂 )

But I digress. Millions of results on happiness. Either lots of people are searching for it (pun intended) or there are millions of content providers with no customers.

While the latest research I read indicated that some people will always be happier than others, we can each declare our right to the pursuit.

What are some steps you can take today to pursue happiness?

I still believe that happiness is a choice. More specifically, it is a series of choices we make every day.

When faced with a choice, you can ask yourself “will this make me happier?”

Will driving aggressively make me happier?

Will having a clean house make me happier?

Will a delicious dinner make me happier?

Will complaining about something make me happier?

Will cleaning out the garage make me happier?

I have a tendency to be lazy. But I have come to realize that just because something is easy doesn’t mean it will make me happier. And just because something is hard doesn’t mean that it won’t. Crazily enough, sometimes the things that are the most work bring the most reward. (I hear children fall under this category, but I will reserve judgment until mine are independently functioning adults!)

What do you do that is difficult and yet deeply fulfilling?


3 Responses to “Millions of results when you google happiness”

  1. I came across some research and it looks like that the more choices people have, the LESS happy they are. He said that we need choices to feel happy, but there is a tipping point and the amount becomes excessive.

    Sort of like standing in line at the grocery store and having a choice of 100 bottles of salad dressing.

  2. thedailydish Says:

    Another great post, Aura Mae!

    So, in response to your question, what makes me happy? Hmmmm.

    I am a happy person. I enjoy joy. Even in the worst situations, I really try my hardest to stay positive. This can be exceedingly difficult at times – remaining the eternal optimist – but still I try. And this perhaps brings me even greater happiness.

    And not only do I personally like being happy, but I LOVE making others happy. That person behind you in line/passing you on the street/sitting next to you on the trolley/etc. is another human being needing love. So I like to share mine freely wherever I go. I like to smile at others. Say hello. Ask how they are doing. Not much, but in this city at least, it helps remind myself & others that we are all the same, human, valued. I know that this tends to infinitely confound (as well as annoy) truly miserable people, but most others respond favorably to a kind smile and cheery hello. To me, that’s time well spent.

  3. Aura Mae Says:

    Are you sure you don’t want to come to Tacoma to get your hair done? It’s not far from Philly! You sound like someone who would fit right in with us. We chat up people in line all the time!

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