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May 15, 2007

Are You Happy? What is Happiness? Does it Matter?

Which do you think would make you more happy, winning the lottery or becoming a paraplegic?

Psychologist Dan Gilbert challenges the idea that we'll be miserable if we don't get what we want. Our "psychological immune system" lets us feel real, enduring happiness, he says, even when things don’t go as planned. He calls this kind of happiness "synthetic happiness," and he says it's "every bit as real and enduring as the kind of happiness you stumble upon when you get exactly what you were aiming for."

This is something that I've pretty much always known. I have to consider the connection with a persons ability to synthesize happiness and their overall health. Sort of opens your mind to the possibility that you really can't make a wrong decision. Which basically gives me a pass on some of the crazy things I do. Interesting stuff.

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Comments

I wouldn't know. I always get what I want. :P

My vote goes for the lottery unless there's something about being a paraplegic I don't know.

I'm curious to read more about this idea, would you have a link to the article (assuming it was online)?

Well, I think I'd rather win the lottery, with the hope that I wouldn't need to cripple most of my body to discover true happiness. The trick, of course, is not to be ruined by the money ...

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