I just had lunch with a colleague – Kate, a casual celebration of her third year with RedBalloon. A bit of a reminisce and comparing notes on what we think has changed the most since 2008 both within and outside the business.
She posed the question as we walked back… ‘Do you still think you are learning a lot?’ Interesting; that is what I am most excited about – learning. By nature I am curious (one of my strengths in input which means I love to gather information.)
I answered her ‘The thing that I am reading about and curious about at the moment is ‘what causes happiness?’.
There is much research on such topics. And I am reading academic papers and books discovering such varied opinions on Happiness. I also ask those around me? Lunching with a friend yesterday – I asked ‘why are we happy? Or not?’ He said in his opinion ‘it is a choice that we make. We either choose to be happy or we choose not to be’.
I know I am a very positive person (sometimes painfully so.) But I don’t wake up in the morning and say ‘I’m going to be happy today.’ I go and do my yoga, chat to my children, pat the dog, go to work…. Get on with what ever is planned for the day. (Even when we have a flood in the office – my mood did not change – there was no drama we just looked at the quickest a best ways to get things back on track – and I went home happy.)
As I begin to read and discover the construct of happiness (and I know that there are many more books on the topic). I want to know how one benchmarks happiness? Is one person’s unhappiness another person’s happiness?
I was alarmed to discover Australia does not rank very well in the Happy Planet Index (HPI) in 2006 Australia came 139, by 2009 Australia had jumped to 102 on the list.
I wondered why Australia is not listed as a happier place? Interesting that the pursuit of material goods is not making people happier.
Manfred Kets de Vries: in his INSEAD address deconstructs happiness to be: someone to love, something to do, and something to hope for.
- What is your definition of happiness?
- What makes you truly happy?
- When was the last time you felt deeply happy –or really belly laughed?
I look forward to reading your responses? Maybe I can solicit some support from our marketers and do a survey on happiness?
I’m just curious?