That’s right. We need to be happy and if at the end of our life we want to look back and feel that everything was worth the effort. But happiness shouldn’t be the goal per se.

This idea may trash all your thoughts about life and what you need to accomplish to reach a state of happiness, like wealth, a perfect relationship, career success, big group of friends, etc. Because if those things, the things that we all strive for, aren’t really the correct route, what is?

And is the whole idea of happiness really worth it? Is this intangible concept, which I can’t seem to achieve, more important than meeting my immediate goals and desires? Answer: yes. Here’s why.

First of all, you’ve got to consider what happiness is. When we achieve stability, both social and financially, we can trick ourselves into believing we’re happy, and we can accept elements of our lives we are not totally OK with, like how we’re treated, the quality of our relationships, or our tedious job. We stop evaluating whether or not we’re truly content or merely superficially content.

And surface level contentment is a million miles from true, deep happiness, because this is a kind of happiness that disappears when there’s an extra ten minutes added to your commute by dire traffic.

Real happiness isn’t extinguished by trivialities.

Real happiness isn’t extinguished by trivialities. Share on X

The benefits of true happiness are huge, and not just for yourself. You become a light in the lives of people that know and love you. If you’re a happy, you are good for the people around you. It’s said that we’re the average of the five people we spend the most time with, so imagine if a big chunk of the people you spent time with were joyful and reassured – you’d never want to be apart from them.

Surface level contentment is a million miles away from true, because this is a kind of happiness that disappears when there’s an extra ten minutes added to your commute.

On the contrary, I’ve known people who cut ties because, while they adore someone, they just cannot handle being brought down every time they see them. Being a negative, sad or dissatisfied person is not good for any relationship. Anger and sadness are as contagious as happiness, and are incredibly isolating. Both make you inconsiderate of your friends and partners, and it can absolutely be the death of any relationship.

Along with stronger, better relationships can come a greater feeling of contentment and satisfaction with yourself and your image. As you grow happier and see things more clearly, you’ll see your positive traits. Happiness can help you adopt a pragmatic approach to who you are as a person.

Those two together form a positive feedback loop. It all builds you up and makes you more content and happier with who you really are.

Along with all the other more obvious benefits, you can expect to become more productive. Primarily because feeling sad, low or angry is draining and wears yourself out. Being truly joyful renders you full of energy, and gives you more patience for those jobs and chores which you would otherwise detest.

It is also a career booster. If you’re a happy person, you work well, people like you, you’re a more stable and consistent employee, and excel in your work. So what do you think the overall effect of your happiness in your career is going to be? It’s going to be hugely positive. You will have more chances to get that promotion you are seeking, but if you don’t, you won’t hugely mind either.

In summary, here’s what you can potentially expect:

It’s Also Not Really That Hard

Anyone can achieve lasting happiness.
It’s not a cure for grief or anything like that. Certain emotions have to be lived through, but if you’ve just found yourself feeling unsatisfied, discontent and not happy, trying to instigate and develop the kind of happiness we’re talking about can be perfect.

First, Take Stock
What do I mean by take stock? Well, look at your life and evaluate how it’s going – if you are where you want to be, If you are doing what you would like to be doing, if you are with the people you would like to be with.

continue to part 2