Three Rules of Happiness


The Atlantic contributing writer Arthur C. Brooks, who writes column about “Happiness” writes in a recent article ” happiness is only about getting all the little details of life right. Each of us should also keep in mind some large truths from the science of happiness that can transcend circumstance and time, guiding us across all of our life’s events, from the trivial to the momentous.”

Dr Brooks lists the following three maximums of happiness.

Brooks: Three Rules of Happiness

  1. Mother Nature doesn’t care if you are happy. There’s a simplistic sort of logic here: Humans desire lots of worldly rewards, like money, power, pleasure, and admiration. We also want to be happy. Thus, if we get that worldly stuff, we will be happy. But this is nature’s cruelest hoax, perpetrated to make sure that we pass on our genes with no consideration of whether we enjoy doing so. … Happiness is your responsibility, not Mother Nature’s. That means you need to curtail your worldly appetites, and instead pursue what truly brings enduring happiness: a faith or life philosophy, family relationships, real friendship, and meaningful work
  2. Lasting happiness comes from habits, not hacks. We live in a culture of “hacking,” or finding shortcuts to achieve otherwise time-consuming goals or invade well-protected systems. …. But for enduring happiness changes, you need habits, not hacks. And by habits, I don’t mean mindless routines; I mean mindful, daily practices to strengthen your relationships, deepen your wisdom, and uncover meaning in your life. … Happy feelings are evidence of happiness, which is a combination of enjoyment, satisfaction, and purpose. Improvement in these areas requires commitment and effort, like anything else that is worthwhile.
  3. Happiness is love. The happiest people have lives focused on love: of family, of friends, of others through work that serves, and in some cases of the divine as well. Research on people who wind up happy (and healthy) as they grow old shows that the most important part of life to cultivate is a series of stable, long-term love relationships.

Source: The Atlantic