Happiness. A sensation that is not of any materialistic value, but above all else in the world, it is a common asset that society continuously pursues to achieve. But how does one know if they possess true happiness? Is it just a feeling? And if someone does not feel happy, how can they go about achieving that feeling? These questions can be answered through analysis of two writings: the essay The Four Secrets to Making Our Own Happiness by Jane McGonigal and the song Better Than by The John Butler Trio. These literary pieces approach a common idea as how to achieve perpetual contentment with one’s life. With intentions to allow their audiences to evaluate his or her own life view of happiness, both pieces persuade their audiences through different …show more content…
By taking an intellectual stance on the dynamics that are rewarding to true happiness, McGonigal expresses to her audience that intrinsic rewards are the sole purpose of real pleasure in life. These rewards cause positive emotions, personal strengths, social connections, and give meaning to one’s life. Through knowledgeable tone, McGonigal develops an explanation of how to achieve eternal contentment with scientific understanding; she states that the human brain produces neurochemicals that allow that person to feel emotions: pleasure, satisfaction, love, and all additional related to happiness (McGonigal 2007). She continues her intellectual approach on happiness with revealing by her positive-psychological analysis suggesting “that intrinsic rewards fall into four categories”(McGonigal 2007 p 368). The first category humans crave work that gratifies the effort that he or she put in to that activity. Secondly, there is a craving for the experience of success to a reveal what one is good at doing. Thirdly, there is desire to experience social connections during moments that have special meaning to that person. Lastly, humans lust for meaning in life. “These four kinds of intrinsic rewards are the foundation for optimal human experience”(McGonical 2007 p 371). Therefore, the only person that can allow that person to feel eternally happy is himself or herself …show more content…
He states that “you could be better than that don't let it get the better of you” (Butler 2007). This reveals his belief that to be happy his audience must overcome the jealousy he or she may encounter of other people, and by not allowing his or her experience to be depreciated because someone else’s experience was dissimilar. He continues to persuade with, “Get your gaze off tomorrow and let come what it may”(Butler 2007). This is Butler expressing to his audience that in order to be happy they must stop worrying about the experiences that are to come in the future, and just let whatever is in store for the future happen. He pursues in influencing his audience by repetition of key phrases throughout the song. The line, “you could be better than that don't let it get the better of you what could be better than now life's not about what's better than” (Butler 2007). By utilizing repetition, the goal Butler wish to portray becomes eminent in making each individual eternally happy by eliminating the stress of worrying about the situations he or she has no control
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In the essay Why Happiness, Why Now? Sara Ahmed talks about how one’s goal in life is to find happiness. Ahmed begins her essay with skepticism and her disbeliefs in happiness. She shows her interest in how happiness is linked to a person’s life choices. Ahmed also tries to dig deeper, and instead of asking an unanswerable question, “what is Happiness?” she asks questions about the role of happiness in one’s life.
Happiness can be easily defined as the state of well-being and contentment gained by personal life experiences through either direct or indirect connections with the world around us. The people we meet and the trails we go through in life add together to create a hopefully happy life. To be happy in life is indeed the only way to enjoy it. Therefore it’s no wonder that we all strive to achieve this idea of happiness. This interest in the search for true happiness has become a major factor in our modern age. Looking back at our history, the moods of many Americans have seemed to become stagnate even when we experience a rise in salaries and overall life expectance. This begs the question as to what then
Many live attempting to decipher the riddle of life. What is life? What is the purpose? What makes? Even though we only seek happiness why can’t we ever seem to achieve it? When we do reach happiness why can’t we seem to grasp it and hold it for more than the few short hours that pass like seconds? The question we must answer first is “What makes happiness, true?”
Happiness is not easy to define. A good life has one characteristic – happiness. Happiness can be defined as pleasure, joy, contentment and satisfaction. Understandings of how to be happy were changing throughout the history. Aristotle who lived in 4th century BC in Athens and Schopenhauer who is19th century philosopher from Germany have contrasting understanding of happiness. In this essay I will argue that Aristotle and Schopenhauer provide accounts of happiness that are useful to contemporary society. The reason for this is that happiness is universal and people’s ways to achieve it did not changed tremendously over times.
“The Four Secrets to Happiness” is a short story of the two reward systems responsible for our happiness as based from a psychological standpoint. The author, Jane McGonigal, effectively discusses the intrinsic reward system and the theory of the four categories that result in long-term happiness. Additionally, she discusses the findings of extrinsic rewards having a negative impact and how we are programmed by society to follow the American Dream, which in fact is composed of extrinsic rewards. However, the author’s background as a gamer, designer, and researcher leads to an unexpected ending that does not support the intrinsic reward system in this reader’s opinion.
In the second section of this paper I will discuss how to live a happy life. I will show you the type of person who lives a happy life and discuss the traits and qualities that a happy person embodies. In my opinion, someone who is happy lives a life close to Susan Wolf’s essay Meaning in Life and Why it Matters with a little bit of Aristotle.
feeling of exhilaration. Happiness is enduring satisfaction with one’s life as a whole. It is an overall evaluation of the quality of the individual’s authentic experience. It calls for balance and positive affectivity over a long period of time. In a similar assertion given by Fordyce, it is accounted to all the pleasant and unpleasant experiences in the recent past. Bentham (1789) and Kahneman (2000) supported the idea of Fordyce that happiness is the sum of pleasure and pains and it underlies with the overall evaluation of life. The qualities of life and kinds of satisfaction pertain to the diverse sources or determinants of happiness of an individual. These put in a nutshell the various sources which are included in the development of the
Happiness is a challenging emotion or state of mind that is hard to define. It is remarkably difficult because every person on earth has a dissimilar view on happiness. Happiness should be understood as something that fulfills the person’s abilities. If he or she achieves happiness, then that equates to a balance of pleasure, honor, and self-sufficiency. Aristotle believes the greatest good is happiness. He describes happiness as, “an activity that is guided by and exercises the human virtues” (60). Is the highest good happiness? What are the characteristics of good? Do we all require habituation to become good? Such questions as these stirs up emotional reactions among debates of the topic.
Happiness is a reprise from the many trials and turmoil of life, and so it is natural that we should actively seek it. Ironically though, in our naïve belief that we can somehow augment the amount of happiness in our world, we are actually making our world more depressing to live in. Both John F. Schumaker, in The Happiness Conspiracy, and Ray Bradbury, in Fahrenheit 451, argue that our myopic pursuit of happiness is actually counterproductive. The two authors attempt to persuade the reader that happiness is, and should be, an almost-serendipitous byproduct of a truly fulfilling life, and therefore should not be an explicit objective.
In the essay titled “What is Happiness?” author John Ciardi deals with the interminable task of defining happiness. He discusses the true meaning of happiness and how many Americans rely on material things for happiness. He highlights how commercials and advertising contribute to our unhappiness when we are unable to satisfy the desires these commercials create. He points out that there is no fixed definition of happiness and it varies from person to person. Ciardi uses location to demonstrate the variation in how people define happiness. He tells us that westerners are under the illusion that happiness can be bought. Easterners perceive happiness as achieving perfection. However people may define happiness, Ciardi claims the real goal is the
It turns out that knowing what makes us happy isn’t enough. We have to act on that knowledge, and not just once, but often" (chapter 10). Jane McGonigal presents the fact that it "It turns out that we knew what makes us happy is not enough, we need to act on this knowledge, not just once, but often" (Chapter 10). Jane McGonigal presents the fact that it is not enough to know what causes us to be happy but we should act according it more often.
In the book, The How of Happiness, author and researcher Sonja Lyubomirsky sets her book apart from other self-awareness books by being the first to utilize empirical studies. She uses data gained through scientific method to provide support for her hypothesis. This hypothesis consists mainly of the idea that we have the ability to overcome genetic predisposition and circumstantial barriers to happiness by how we think and what we do. She emphasizes that being happier benefits ourselves, our family and our community. “The How of Happiness is science, and the happiness-increasing strategies that [she] and other social psychologists have developed are its key supporting players” (3).
Happiness, what exactly is it? Happiness is different to everyone, for one person happiness can be their family, and for another person happiness can be money. According to Merriam-Webster Dictionary, Happiness is defined as “ the state of being happy ”(“Happiness.” Merriam-Webster).The definition itself is so simple, yet so complex at the same time, that in today’s time we are having trouble finding that key to happiness. Today, before writing this paper I went around asking family members of mine what the secret to happiness was, and I was pretty shocked but not that surprised at the answers I received.