happiness

Love the money, hate the job? The effect of bulls**t jobs on happiness

Many of us have noticed  a strange paradox but been unable to put a name to it. We believe that a job that doesn’t demand too much of us should mean we have plenty of energy left over for our real interests. Furthermore, we anticipate that if that job not only doesn’t demand much of us but also pays us very well, then we should experience happiness: we have beaten the system! We are being paid for doing practically nothing, what could be a better arrangement?

And yet, after an initial sense of triumph, it can slowly become apparent that the logic - lots of money for little work equals happiness and a fulfilled life  - doesn’t work out. Instead we feel, well, that something isn’t right. That despite the income we aren’t happy at work.

Did you know: seeking happiness can make people unhappy?

While we recognise that in general happiness is a crucial ingredient of well-being and health, happiness is not valued to the same extent by everyone. For some people it is a ‘nice to have’ while for others it is the stuff of life, a state to which they constantly aspire. Goal pursuit theory suggests that if we value something and actively pursue it we should experience more of it. So if we value happiness and pursue it, so we should experience more of it. However, there is a sting in the tail…

Does Happiness Contribute To Success? Reasons To Be Cheerful

While much research confirms that successful outcomes can foster happiness, it has tended to be seen as a one-way linear relationship: you have to be successful to be happy. But might it be more of a circular relationship? A virtuous circle where being happy makes it more likely you will succeed? In 2005 Sonja Lyubomirsky, Ed Diener and Laura King pulled together all the research they could find that addressed the question: does happiness contribute to success?