George Sand says, there is only one kind of happiness: to love and be loved. Many people may not agree with the fact that love is the only form of happiness in this life. Despite being the only source of happiness, it is one of the major sources that have a positive impact on human well being. We feel happy when we are filled with love and we know that we are valued and being loved. When you are in love it not only cleans up negative thinking but also lessens your pains and sufferings. Love cleanses our inner self and we feel blessed and remain calm through thick and thin. It also fills our surroundings with joy so in order to achieve long lasting contentment and pleasure, the need is to develop ability to care for others around us.
How do you measure the happiness of a nation? One measure often used, Gross National Product, examines the total financial value of all services and goods in a nation. As can attest to, however, money doesn't always equal happiness. While the financial value of what's produced may rank relatively high, if the money is concentrated in the hands of a relatively small amount of people, the nation's overall happiness isn't that high. Additionally, other measures of population happiness are often overlooked in gross national product metrics. A city may be bursting at the seams with money, but mired in pollution, corruption, and noise. Citizens might make products that let them pay for housing and food, but if medical care is unaffordable, sickness may drag down the population's overall happiness.
Much of the new research on the science of happiness reveals that the way we think about feeling is important in determining how good we feel. If we think it is good, we feel good; if we think it is bad, we feel bad. It is the matter of subjective feelings where one distinctively knows how one feels. Cultural studies, on the other hand, don’t rely on subjectivity. Cultural and psychoanalytic approaches argue that ordinary attachments of everyday life create ambivalence to the very idea of happiness and these are a source of confusion and discourage the clear distinction of good and bad feelings.
Most of us come to a point in our lives, whether it be when we reach retirement and have more free time, have children or maybe reach middle age, when we realise we are able to do more to help others.
Going through life only doing what is best for ourselves might make sense and even be necessary to a certain extent when we're young and struggling to make it in our career, but to live a fulfilling life surely we need to give back when we can?
If you have decided you want to do more for others but don't know where to start don't let this defeat you before you have even begun! Here are some ideas to get you started...
Researchers have a recent focus on the fact that happiness is not a single entity and we can divide it into separate elements. A previous research conducted by Kahneman (1999) also supports the fact that the universal judgment of happiness and satisfaction reported on a given moment in time is basically different than the overall pleasure of people’s emotional lives. In support of this research, another study by Lucas and Suh (1996) found that various forms of happiness and emotional well being are empirically different so it is not enough to study and measure happiness as an entity; instead separate forms of happiness must be analyzed.