I came across this very interesting research on happiness by Dr. Brett Ford.
Dr. Brett Ford did this research with her colleagues. They looked at the following question:
If you consciously decide that you are going to spend more of your life trying to become happier, will you actually become happier?
They did this research in four countries, USA, Germany, Russia and East Asia.
What they found is the following:
In the USA, if you consciously try to become happier, you do not become happier. The pursuit of happiness tends to make individual Americans unhappy.
In the other countries, you do become happier.
In the USA, when people try to make themselves happier, generally they would do something for themselves, e.g. try to make more money, buy something for yourself, spoil yourself, go shopping, and show-off on instagram.
In other countries, most of the time, if people in those countries try to make themselves happier, they do something for someone else, e.g try to help a friend.
The Americans have an implicitly individualistic vision of happiness and other countries have an implicitly collective vision of happiness.
A culture of individualism is prone to lead to less happiness, whereas a culture of collectiveness is prone to more happiness.
So the better tool to be successfully happy is to be of service to others.
“I took a selfie and I look good, here it is what do you think?“
“I took a picture of you [a Youfie]. wow you look good.“
The first is me-centric and explains that we are promoting something that got made because we need to sell it.
Focus on taking more Youfies, service and celebrate others, that process will lead you to your happiness.
This advert captures the essence of what I would consider as a successful pursuit to happiness:
Want to be happy? Do something for someone else.
Do something for someone because you want to, not because you want to be seen doing it.
Do it as a Youfie, not a Selfie.
We rise by lifting others.
Very interesting insights.