The Science of Happiness – If You’re Happy and You Know It
The folks at SoulPancake have done it again! In a video based on a study conducted by the University of California – Riverside, they wanted to show a link between happiness and success – but not the link you might be thinking.
Instead of the commonly assumed association, where “successful” people have higher levels of happiness, this looks at the exact opposite relationship: that being happy actually leads to success.
The video presents a basic experiment: two groups are given the same problem-solving test, but one group is given several “happiness affecting” cues to put them in a positive mood before beginning the test. The experiment found that the “happy group” was, on average, faster at solving the problem.
Now, this shows at least a correlation between a good mood and problem solving skills (though there is no way to determine the problem solving abilities of the participants before taking the test), but it isn’t too difficult to see the larger implications of this idea.
When people are happy, they tend to have a more optimistic outlook, think more clearly, and have higher self-esteem. All of these traits associated with a general sense of happiness are also the traits of achievers – people who are work toward their goals with confidence and determination.
So, if happiness leads to success, shouldn’t the focus being on finding and maintaining happiness?
Note: true happiness is not fleeting. It doesn’t come from material objects or monetary rewards. It doesn’t come from praise, or even from other people. It has to start within!
When you can harness your own internal happiness, as the study and SoulPancake experiment found, you approach problems with confidence. But it goes far beyond problem solving – the optimism and self-esteem that accompany an overall attitude of happiness are key components to success in any endeavor!
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