What do happy people have in common?

 

“Researchers… found that happy people are ten times more likely to be other-oriented than self-centered. This suggests that happiness is a by-product of helping others rather than the result of its pursuit.”

Via Shiny Objects: Why We Spend Money We Don’t Have in Search of Happiness We Can’t Buy:

Most life goals can be placed in one of two opposing camps: personal happiness or service to others. In other words, goals are typically self-oriented or other-oriented. The problem is that pursuing one type of goal comes at the expense of goals in the other camp. So who is the happiest— a person who devotes his time to the pursuit of personal happiness or the person who devotes his life to helping others? The following brief exercise may help you fashion an answer to that question, which is one of life’s most fundamental.

First, list ten people whom you know well. Next, rate each person as either happy or unhappy. Finally, rate each person as either self-centered or other-oriented. Do you see a pattern? Researchers have: they’ve found that happy people are ten times more likely to be other-oriented than self-centered. This suggests that happiness is a by-product of helping others rather than the result of its pursuit.

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