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The term "happiness" can mean many various things to different people. Numerous psychologists and researchers have attempted to describe happiness up to this point, but no clear definition has been found. Many people attempt to equate happiness with wealth, leading a fulfilling life, and having joy. However, wealthy people with all their lavish parties and extravagances would be extraordinarily happy if happiness were to be defined according to the view of the majority of people. But in truth, despite needing to be excessively wealthy, some of the wealthy are incredibly unhappy. Since we all put various resources toward our happiness, each person defines happiness differently. But what does happiness really mean? Happiness can allude to a great feeling that is important and yet elusive and intangible and is characterized by emotions of satisfaction, joy, and contentment. In my opinion, happiness is experienced in many ways, there is no definite answer to what it really means to be happy.
For religious people, being happy may imply growing spiritually. In spite of all the different views, happiness is not accidental – it is often made, established from the bottom to up, produced, created, and discovered. But this can only be realized by making a decision to be happy. Sigmund Freud stated that individuals “strive after happiness; they want to be happy and remain so?” (Porter 460) This implies that a lot of people seek happiness no matter the cost or price to pay. For instance, people who believe that happiness is defined by wealth may go to extreme situations of robbing just to get money to elevate their happiness. Everyone strives to be happy and people must have a principle to be happy despite the numerous difficulties or events that may be waiting. Happiness can be distorted by the countless suffering and catastrophes experienced in a day-to-day life. Therefore, happiness can be a pot of gold, but to achieve it we must determine a way and establish a road to lead us to it, in spite of the fact that the road to happiness may not be smooth for everyone.
Happiness arises from various sources but universal ones are family and friends. Happiness does not reside in our possession of gold but on the belief that we are loved and appreciated. Even though happiness is a natural feeling many people desire to be happy, happiness is elusive and thus, extremely and to attain. In some instances, for example, a person may find himself or herself smiling or being joyful for no apparent reason. What makes me happy does not necessarily make another person happy. In the article “What Happiness” Is by Eduardo Porter, Snoopy a philosopher says that “My life as no purpose, no direction, no aim, no meaning, and yet I am happy. I can’t figure it out. What am I doing right?” (Porter 459) From Snoopy’s description happiness is a mystery and even without doing something or chasing happiness one can still be happy.
Certain people work to attain happiness. Working means more than just getting a paycheque. To some, working holds a key to their happiness since it satisfies them and increases their self-worth and confidence. Satisfaction is achieved by having a feeling that you made a valuable contribution (Porter 459). Work contentment satisfaction is not hugely dependent on how much a person can earn but on the ability to enjoy what they do. No matter how many hours one spends working, the profit may not matter. In 2009 Indian movie 3 Idiots, one of the three major characters Farhan Qureshi realizes that he would never be happy being an engineer but as a wildlife photographer. Farhan approaches his father and convinces him to let him be a photographer because he would be happier despite earning little. Therefore, it is important for one to make his/her passion and hobby as a career because it is more fulfilling and satisfactory. One must critically choose their career to be happy.
According to Porter, people opt to work and make money. Economic growth is a result of our quest for well-being,” it is what makes us happy.” (Porter 459) As discussed in the previous paragraph, working may not be all about getting a fat pay cheque but in most cases, a cheque matters. Many people work to support their families and as explained by Porter happiness may imply to having a happy family and being able to provide for them. Economic growth thus occurs during the course of pursuing happiness. Additionally, a family founded on love and understanding is deemed to be experience happiness.
Different people have varied perspectives on what happiness really means. For some people, happiness is being healthy, smiling often, doing a job you are passionate about or making money. Happiness is not a feeling that is achieved momentarily, but one must work towards attaining it. What makes one person happy can make another person unhappy. Happiness can be created and is attainable. Despite the different perceptions of happiness anyone can be happy, mostly because we all deserve to be happy.
Porter, Eduardo. The Price of Everything: Solving the Mystery of Why We Pay What We Do. "What Happiness Is." Gildan Audio, 2011: 458-461.
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