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Thread: Happiness (From Postmasculine website)

  1. #1
    wiltondeportes's Avatar
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    Happiness (From Postmasculine website)

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    The Postmasculine Guide to Happiness

    I really like this article written on happiness. It talks about a "psychological immune system" that appears to have been coined by researcher Dan Brown. He did a Ted talk on happiness alone, and that video is embedded in the article.

    I just wanted to share this because it explains two key things that can appear to contradict one another until you analyze it clearly.

    1. Happiness is not defined by riches or rags, winning or losing, success or failure, even a love or love lost. As Brown puts it, you synthesize happiness with this psychological immune system. It changes your life view based upon whatever makes you happy. We think happiness is something to be found, but it's not. Think about that....before a big sports game, before finding out if you got the job, if the girl said yes, if before (insert any anticipated event); we think these results will define our happiness, but it won't. Then we think it is wrong for our immune system to then make us happy even if we fail. Does anyone deserve to be unhappy? So conclusion of #1: events do not matter to happiness.

    2. In the pursuit of happiness (life), we succeed, fail, binge, starve, etc in short spurts. After that, we return to a baseline of happiness. This baseline is the one thing that we have 'control' over. In other words, our choices affect it. Our choices do not affect our actual feeling of happiness because moments come and moments pass. (This is of course from a 3rd person point of view. It will not feel like it, but we can synthesize happiness over any sad moment. This happiness is no less real than the kind gained from getting what we want.) Once again, this baseline of happiness is affected by our control over our own lives. (Freeeeeeedom). Summary of #2: by taking responsibility for everything, using courage on a consistent basis, and setting achievable goals; we achieve control in our life and a high baseline happiness.

    But wait, why are we doing all that if the events in life won't make us significantly happier or sadder? What are we fighting for? I think we are fighting because we have to fight.

    Why should we be doing things? Because of what others will think of us, or because what we will think of ourselves?

    Minimize reliance on external validation. Once again, don't worry about appearing successful, handsome, pretty, popular. These are things out of your control. They come and they go. Attain internal validation from things you can control by achieving worthwhile goals and meeting your own standards. So make your life such that you make your own validation instead of needing it from others. Baseline happiness is staying up.

    There's another seeming dichotomy in happiness. It is perspective.

    Cultivate a perspective beyond yourself. Take part in charity, appreciate what you have, even give up what you don't need. But wait...if the event results in life don't affect someone's happiness, then why should I bother giving money/time to the less fortunate? They should be as happy as I am, right? Why do we do this? I think we give because we have to give. Also, why should we appreciate what we have in life if even if we had failed to get this stuff, we could have found another path to happiness? I think we appreciate things because we have to appreciate them.


    Here is what appears to be the takeaway:

    -We take control in our lives to be happy

    -We fight because we have to fight
    -We give because we have to give
    -We appreciate things because we have to appreciate them

    These conclusions are an analyst's nightmare. How can one logically analyze things that loop in an illogical manner? The analyst stops doing the things in that loop because he is so consumed with its analysis. I know I've been guilty of it, and I need to stop. Things are how they are, so we must do. Just do...
    Last edited by wiltondeportes; 08-14-2012 at 01:20 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Santa Barbara
    The Al-Anon version of happiness (Al-Anon is for friends and family of alcoholics) is gratitude. Cultivate gratitude and you will find happiness.

    Oddly, I have found changing my diet to make happiness more readily available. And others I know say the same thing. It's astonishing, really. Happiness isn't that much work and yeah, it really doesn't depend on outside circumstances.
    Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Too deep for me. Thanks though, I am glad someone is thinking about these things.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    I like this article . . .it sort of reinforces why I liked the Primal Blueprint - the idea that we should be sure to sleep well, play often enough, take care of ourselves, etc. - that is what will bring happiness.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Spalding, Lincolnshire
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    Quote Originally Posted by wiltondeportes View Post
    Here is what appears to be the takeaway:

    -We take control in our lives to be happy

    -We fight because we have to fight
    -We give because we have to give
    -We appreciate things because we have to appreciate them

    These conclusions are an analyst's nightmare.
    My conclusion is that happiness is a decision each individual must make. I choose to be happy no matter what occurs in my life. If I become ill, I think to myself "at least I'm not dead and I get to rest." I know that things will go wrong but it is how I deal with the results that determine how happy I am. I will now always choose to do what can be done and move on.

    I went through mental trouble years ago and I found one book particularly useful. The tenth anniversary edition of it is here :- The Art of Happiness, 10th Anniversary Edition: A Handbook for Living (9781594488894): Dalai Lama: Books
    Why use a sledge hammer to crack a nut when a steam roller is even more effective, and, is fun to drive.

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