Celebrate the Day
The second week of November has been designated as National Pursuit of Happiness Week. What better time to reflect on how happy you are and what you need to do to pursue complete bliss? In 1776, the Declaration of Independence gave us the right to “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” In 2014, Pharrell Williams’ song “Happy” has become the anthem of many who need the inspiration to become happy.
So what defines happiness? To many, happiness is determined by living a good life or flourishing in their quality of life and well-being. Research has produced many different views of happiness but no validated method has been found to improve long-term happiness. When I asked my son what would make him happy, his answer was, “Money. And lots of it.” So my response to him was the words and tune of The Beatles song, Can’t Buy Me Love.
Wikipedia states that psychologist Martin Seligman provided an acronym, PERMA, to summarize the key factors to happiness. He says humans seem happiest when they have:
Pleasure (tasty food, warm baths, etc.)
Engagement (or flow, the absorption of an enjoyed yet challenging activity)
Relationships (social ties have turned out to be extremely reliable indicator of happiness)
Meaning (a perceived quest or belonging to something bigger)
Accomplishments (having tangible goals)