Harvard Medical School’s FIVE Keys To Happiness

What’s your New Year’s resolution? Whether you’re determined to shed that extra turkey weight or change careers, the end goal is always the same… to increase your happiness. One current scientific theory, substantiated by reams of research, is that we are all born with a genetic happiness ‘set point’. But just because you were a gnarly teen, or mopey twentysomething, it doesn’t mean you’re condemned to live out the rest of your life in emo purgatory. According to Ronald D. Siegel, Psy.D., assistant clinical professor of psychology at Harvard Medical School, there are five key lifestyle tweaks we all can make to maximize our happiness:

1. Practice using our strengths, particularly our virtues (ie: curiousity, compassion)

2. Practice internal and external gratitude for what we have, and towards the people who show us love and generousity

3. Savour the moment by practicing mindfulness (seriously, have you ever truly experienced an orange? Its intricacies of form and flavour will blow your mind)

4. Engage in the process (ie: feeling ‘in the zone’ while writing, or heck, even knitting)

5. Live meaningfully by serving others rather than our own egos (my own ego is pouting in a corner over this one, but no amount of whining can refute the piles of evidence supporting #5)

So go forth and be happy! Not buying it? Ok, ok, so go forth and be happier! I just can’t believe that Harvard hasn’t caught on to #6. But whatever path or key you choose, don’t forget that the rollercoaster is what drives the magic. So go forth and click out of this embarrassingly Oprah-atic post and get back to surfing this grand ol’ distraction from mortality we call the web. I suggest Youtube, because you never know when you’ll click your way into a wee spot of wisdom.

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5 Responses to Harvard Medical School’s FIVE Keys To Happiness

  1. Nice post!

    I liked the “emo purgatory” and ” Oprah-atic”concepts.
    I don’t think I’ll find the wisdom you refer in youtube but I’ll sure I’ll find some funny video… and that will make me happier for the moment ;).

  2. Cymbria says:

    Thanks T.L.G!
    And what is life but a collection of moments… Oh man, I’ve got to get back to posting about pantslessness and dishes lol, this philosophy bit-a-business is getting out of hand ; )

  3. Wonderful blog you have here but I was wanting to know if you
    knew of any discussion boards that cover the same topics talked about here?
    I’d really love to be a part of group where I can get comments from other knowledgeable individuals that share the same interest. If you have any suggestions, please let me know. Bless you!

  4. Cymbria says:

    Thank You! I haven’t heard directly of any related discussion groups, but I’m sure they’re out there… wait for it… google moment! If you find any gems (sounds like they’d be a jolly bunch lol), I’d love it if you passed the news back up the grapevine and let me know 🙂 Good luck!

  5. […] Whether describing hedonistic (drugs, alcohol, the ingestion or wearing of whipped cream) or eudonic (volunteering, goal meeting, exercising talents) rewards, there’s always the same sentence […]

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