Journalist Jon Gertner, who studied happiness by interviewing experts in both economics and psychology, wrote The Futile Pursuit of Happiness. He concluded that people involved with other people are happier than loners and raising one’s living standard from impoverished to middle class makes an enormous difference, Gertner (after complex experiments) arrived to what he called a happiness set point. Turns out, our brains do not try to make us happy. Our brains try to regulate us to an even keel, a type of adaptation to survive. Case in point, if we buy a brand new BMW, it won’t be long before we find it ordinary. But, with other negative impacts, for instance the loss of a limb, our brain will help us get through it. It will become something not so bad. In other words, whether something is wonderful or terrible, we have the capacity to get through it. We adapt.
I’ve notice my son Ted (below in his shades) has become happier after giving up solitary practice of the saxophone, replacing it with a hobby in photography where he collaborates with other photographers.
|photos on flickr iteddy1|