Sta Hungry Stay Foolish

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

A blog by Leon Oudejans

Happiness and satisfaction (3)

In part one of my blog, I wrote I was neither happy nor satisfied for about two decades. I can give specific reasons for my dissatisfaction, supported by memories. I cannot, however, remember any specifics about my unhappiness. I must have felt joy and even moments of happiness but the default in those twenty years was feeling more and more miserable.

Quartz: “The key here is memory. Satisfaction is retrospective. Happiness occurs in real time. In Kahneman’s work, he found that people tell themselves a story about their lives, which may or may not add up to a pleasing tale. Yet, our day-to-day experiences yield positive feelings that may not advance that longer story, necessarily. Memory is enduring. Feelings pass. Many of our happiest moments aren’t preserved—they’re not all caught on camera but just happen. And then they’re gone.”

In part two of my blog, I wrote that I had been focussing on satisfying my Needs and Wants first. Either I (deliberately) delayed my pursuit of happiness (my blogs #1, #2, #3), or I assumed that happiness was the logical next step – or both. I am not sure what my reasons were. Probably, I just prioritized satisfaction over happiness

Quartz: “[] in Kahneman’s research measuring everyday happiness—the experiences that leave people feeling good—he found that spending time with friends was highly effective. Yet those focused on long-term goals that yield satisfaction don’t necessarily prioritize socializing, as they’re busy with the bigger picture.”

The Quartz quote above feels like a true description of myself. I have always been goal-oriented and even invented the word “resultant” for that. Happiness was supposed to be the whipped cream on top of my satisfaction. Nevertheless, I would characterize my single days as happy. Unfortunately, being in a relationship and feeling unhappy have a high correlation in my life.

Scott H. Young: “The reason people are unhappy in relationships is that we were never designed to be happy in relationships. Human beings, like all life, evolved for evolutionary fitness, not for romantic satisfaction. Therefore, a lot of dissatisfaction is the result of urges people have that they believe will make them happy, but in fact do the opposite.”

I’m slowly coming to a point at which I’m asking myself: does happiness even exist? Obviously, this question is another argument for my classification of happiness as a belief. Beliefs do not necessarily exist. Perhaps, I’m confusing my contentment with being/feeling happy. But does it really matter? The end result is the same: nowadays I’m happy and satisfied with my life.

Does It Matter (2017) by Janieck

artist, lyrics, video, Wiki

Note: all markings (bolditalicunderlining) by LO unless stated otherwise


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