Happiness Is a Chore

post by SquirrelInHell · 2017-12-20T11:11:01.848Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW · Legacy · 7 comments

This is a link post for http://squirrelinhell.blogspot.com/2017/12/happiness-is-chore.html

7 comments

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comment by MaryCh · 2017-12-23T18:02:54.292Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

I feel so much freer when I don't have to demonstrate that I am happy.

Sometimes, it almost seems like I am truly happy only when I "escape" or "triumph" over something that almost "ate me up": my husband's household, the Department that I had gone to for a PhD thesis... the genuinely nice psychiatrist who soothes my Mother's fears... Like "I am happy when I have proved that I haven't changed, because change is corruption". So yes, [feeling happy] is one of the necessary chores of self-maintenance. I don't get why I should want it more than, say, a chance to sleep in.

OTOH, joy is very different. It kind of just happens, unasked-for.

comment by thefishinthetank · 2018-01-04T07:27:36.989Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

OTOH, joy is very different. It kind of just happens, unasked-for.

This is the happiness we are really searching for. The other kind is better described as pleasure.

comment by MaryCh · 2018-01-05T15:23:17.441Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

Well, in my life I can recall two instances off-hand. There have probably been more of them, but at the very least, they seem to be completely unrelated to attempts to raise well-being levels...

comment by NerdyAesthete_duplicate0.5979037175915429 · 2017-12-24T23:03:04.770Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Sometimes, it almost seems like I am truly happy only when I "escape" or "triumph" over something that almost "ate me up": my husband's household, the Department that I had gone to for a PhD thesis... the genuinely nice psychiatrist who soothes my Mother's fears... Like "I am happy when I have proved that I haven't changed, because change is corruption".

I'd say that's a relief from a precarious situation, which does provide happiness, but is only temporary and not sustainable.

However, contentment (or a relaxed sense of well-being) is a form of happiness that can be sustained until something distressful occurs. Sustaining contentment may require life changes, for I feel many people's lives are incompatible with this sustained level of contentment; the lack of freedom imposed by obligations tends to being more stressing than not.

Also, exhilaration is another form of happiness (similar to anxiety, but the difference is certainly noticeable) that is desirable that's tricky to activate. I believe your joy is similar to my exhilaration, or maybe a gradation between contentment and exhilaration.

comment by bitcohen · 2018-02-10T18:44:51.040Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

What is the likelihood that this happiness method loses power over time? I had a method for achieving happiness that worked for about two years, but eventually it just sorta petered out. bitcohen

comment by NancyLebovitz · 2017-12-20T16:10:57.533Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I'm somewhat annoyed that this claims there's a solution to becoming happier, goes on at some length, and doesn't include the solution.

comment by Lumifer · 2017-12-20T20:36:08.916Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · LW · GW

I suspect the solution is this.