Misconceptions About Happiness
Life and Happiness

7 Misconceptions About Happiness

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Hi guys!

Welcome back to my baby blog! It has been sooo many weeks and the clingy inner child in me misses the WordPress community. I’m glad I can finally get back to writing. 🙂

Anyway, this week we’re going to talk about happiness. A word that everyone seems to be talking about these days including me.

Undeniably, this word has covered a lot of meaning throughout time. Since the ancient Greeks, happiness is attempted to be described, taping it with the word eudaimonia which means “to live well”, as if it was a beauty one can dare to attain.

In an article I’ve read, modern science looks at happiness to be related to hedonism— the pursuit of pleasure.

Moreover, science has established this certain concept surrounding the word, which gave birth to terms like subjective well-being. Some other studies propose happiness is an unmeasurable condition.

As you see, happiness is such a big word for it to be bounded solely by its definitions. There are so many studies about happiness and its entirety that gave it a deeper, more substantial meaning.

What I believe is that happiness is about having a sense of well-being, not just for one part of your life. I think that happiness is a subtle yet ever-lingering state that reminds you that you are well and okay. It’s also achieving security and satisfaction in life.

The fact is many people often build misconceptions about the H-word. We try to define it as if it was a simple concept; something that we can control, achieved in an easier, more convenient way.

But trust me, we don’t want that. What we want is to train ourselves to be someone who regularly sees the opportunities to feel happy in our lives, and taking and using those opportunities to achieve better well-being. And doing this isn’t an easy way out.

The first step is to get more understanding of what happiness really governs.

So, before we dive into the good things about finding happiness in your life, I’m going to share with you some common misconceptions about happiness. So I hope you read on and enjoy reading! 🙂

Misconceptions about happiness

There’s no shortcut to happiness

Achieving genuine happiness is more than just a blissful feeling. It rhymes with the words, contentment, well-being, gratitude, a silver-lining, which are more stable and profound words.

This is the first and probably the most important misconception we need to take account of. If we want to be happy, we’ve got to have patience. We may have to establish better habits, and establishing better habits take time and effort to get into our system.

We might think that having a certain kind of convenience in life makes us happy (and yeah, generally the concept of convenience doesn’t suck). But even after that, we can’t really tell that we’re okay, and there’s no guarantee that it will stay the same.

What I’m trying to say is, a few inconsistent efforts won’t do it. It’s not easy to maintain it in our life. One day or the other, we will eventually lose it and then we’ll have to look for it again.

We can’t really get a hold of it and expect that everything will be okay from then on. Life will find ways to take our happiness from us. We should have a better and more consistent way of achieving our sense of well-being.

It takes good effort and determination! Trust yourself and believe that you can be a person who regularly sees those happiness opportunities.

It isn’t measured by having some object

People let their happiness be dependent on the things that they have. We are so materially dependent that we literally measure everything– our health, life satisfaction, social status, career, and well-being– by the objects that we obtain in our life.

We always fancy new phones, an awesome TV set, a new car. People think that having these objects will satisfy them even in the long run. But it doesn’t. This is an unhealthy habit you have to break. This keeps you from appreciating your life!

If you’re this type, I’m telling you, you shouldn’t base your happiness on an object. Clinging into these materialistic things will just make you a person with lower life satisfaction. This can mean that you will never be fully happy.

You should know that you deserve more than that. You should know more than anything that achieving a sense of well-being feels much greater than the feeling that a new house or a new car could give you.

Instant gratification won’t really make you happy

What are instant gratifications? These are quick rewards that we just love to collect.

Neil Patel describes it as, “the desire to experience pleasure or fulfillment without delay or deferment”.

We support those food delivery companies, ATM machines, online wallets, etc. because they seem to make our lives more convenient. We are instantly grateful when we use them.

There are two reasons why we’re a big fan of instant gratification: one because an instant is always good (or is it?), and two because everybody gets to be happy. But you know, instant gratification is most times temporary.

It doesn’t last long. And what we’re seeking is that permanent assurance and security about our well-being. It’s not that you should avoid these quick rewards, but, along the way, tuning into these things may mislead you. This may potentially drive you away from how big the truth is about happiness.

When we focus on instant gratifications, sometimes we miss out on those other opportunities to be happy. Like for example, you prefer ordering through the drive-thru or take-out instead of dining in a restaurant.

What could possibly happen if all people just go for a take-out and not dine-in? We lose the opportunity to interact with other people or to spend special and quality time with our family.

Your daughter just won in a competition and wants to eat at McDonald’s to celebrate with you and everybody else. You’re thinking, if you just order on take-out you can have the food on the go. And then, maybe everyone will get an early rest from their tiring day. But actually, you’re unknowingly taking you and your daughter’s opportunity to be happy. If otherwise, you give her that moment, maybe she’ll even remember it for the rest of her life.

Savoring happy moments like those can evidently affect our mood and increase our well-being.

Make sure that you have a couple of genuine happy moments to savor once in a while.

Happiness doesn’t depend on the greatness of your experience but on the frequency of those experiences

Are you constantly thinking about that million-dollar price from the lottery? You’ve been spending most of your life betting on that magic number because you think that winning that ball will finally make you happy. Well, I don’t blame you. I would LOVE to win on a lottery contest too.

But forgive me when I say that having a great experience of being happy doesn’t really last much longer either. Like instant gratifications, happiness doesn’t really depend on the greatness and speed of your happy moments.

Have you ever felt so happy when you finally moved over to your dream house because you think that you can finally start over, believing that a happy house makes a happy person?

I bet it felt good! But how long did that feeling last? Maybe a year, and then everything will start to feel normal again. You’d go back to your baseline again. This means that big moments aren’t enough to form a person’s well-being.

It’s about the frequency of those experiences—how often you make yourself and others happy. That’s what fulfills your feeling of joy. If you can maintain those experiences from happening, it will have a great impact on changing your life.

Happy moments are not always big. Sometimes they’re small, quiet, and simple moments.

Let’s make sure not to miss out on those small moments because those are the situations that often come frequently. Remember: the key is to be happy more frequently than we are right now.

Happiness takes hard work

Happy people nurture their happiness. They always find reasons and ways to maintain it. They work hard changing their habits until they form into behavior which can increase their satisfaction in life.

For example, extroverts are more commonly experiencing happy moments than introverts because studies show that socializing is actually good for your well-being.

Because of this, experts say that extroverts are happier for they frequently experience happy moments. Now I’m not saying that if you’re an introvert, it means you won’t have any chance to be perfectly happy at all.

Recently, I have listened to this podcast that says our expectations guide our behaviors. “If you expect it to rain outside, you will likely bring an umbrella when you go to work.” Our minds just fool us when it comes to deciding what’s really best for our well-being.

Introverted people usually expect less from socializing, and therefore, they may behave like they don’t want to socialize. But the truth is, introverts and extroverts are just as happy when they socialize with other people.

What I’m trying to say is, happy people have this kind of special talent wherein they often see some silver lining in certain situations and that talent takes hard work for others.

You have to make an effort and help yourself find a simple gratification every day of your life.

Happiness isn’t something you can feel without doing anything. Even in worse situations, let us try to be the person who still sees something worth thanking for.

Practice some positive mantras to improve your mood, keep a gratification list every day, these simple exercise can form a new behavior and may help you become better as the days go by.

If you think that your circumstance is what’s stopping you from being happy, think again

You may think that changing the situation that you’re currently in will make you feel happier. Perhaps, you would think that becoming richer will make you happier, or increasing your income money will finally give you the peace and security you’ve been waiting for, it doesn’t actually work for all people.

You badly want an out every time you find yourself in a bit of a pickle and you wish things could just change to make you feel better. But truthfully speaking, every time that we get more of what we want, what we think we need actually increase too.

An article by John Rampton featured a Princeton study that says, “having a higher income increases happiness but only up to about $75,000 per year.”

We can be happier by changing our circumstances only to an extent. And after that, it really doesn’t get any better. Sometimes it just gets worse.

If you’re a man who has a stable job and has achieved financial stability, Maybe pushing more of your luck won’t have an effect on your well-being.

If you think that you’re not earning enough so you’re not happy, maybe you ought to reflect on what you have and how blessed you are for even having that kind of stability in life.

It’s important to understand that we can always find happy moments even in situations we don’t want to be in. Our generation often lacks in risk-taking, which makes us less tolerant and less resilient.

Continuously changing our circumstances won’t probably help us all the time. Sometimes we just got to work with what we got. Make special moments out of it, and focus on our well-being.

Everyone can learn to be happy

If you think that you will never be like those happy people who find good in everything, let me stop you right now. You’re wrong. With time, everyone can learn to be happy.

This is what’s great about the whole idea of happiness! Even those people diagnosed with clinical depressions, suicidal tendencies, and traumas can help themselves find light in dark moments. Some can learn how to reach out, and some can progress with the right kind of help.

Happiness can be learned, practiced, and maintained by doing the right things that will help us.

Our minds often lie to us about a lot of things, but it can be very powerful once we understand how it works. Training our minds to achieve better thinking, behavior, and understanding of life is such a helpful way to improve one step at a time.

Let’s train our minds to constantly seek opportunities to be happy, the first step is to get more understanding of what happiness really governs. Now the second one is to put what you know in action.

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  • Paul

    This may sound odd, but I think our society places too much emphasis on being happy all of the time. There’s an old saying that the land of eternal sunshine is a desert. That’s the life of perpetual happiness, or at least the constant, treadmill-like pursuit of it. Sadness and the other “negative” emotions we run and hide from the world are useful in the same ways that physical pain is useful to body. Physical pain tells us something is wrong and we need to do something about it. Emotional pain too. This is good. This is useful. This is necessary. Not all the time, mind you, but enough to be the rain that keeps that desert green. Paul

    • Elle

      I understand where you’re coming from and I totally agree with you, Paul! 😉 It is a desert. It really isn’t a place we can go to and stay forever. Because life is a constant struggle of pain and pleasure, I believe that we can learn so much from everything that happens to us, in our lives– the pain, the sadness, and even those unfortunate events, I believe in them–and yet still chose to grow from it, to find something that can be grateful from it. In those moments, is where we really learn how we can be well and okay. Not only in the experiences that we think will makes us happy, but also from those experiences that make us sad too. That’s it. I love your comment, you rock my world. 💕

  • Beaton

    The pursuit of happiness,some people are focused on achieving happiness that they miss out on it, mistaking it for success and other achievements….

    Oft times happiness isnt a spectacle it could be as simple as a raindrop that lands on your face and it tickles….

    With the right mindset ne can find happiness even in the most grim circumstances


  • Anika May

    Great post, I definitely agree with a lot of your points. Most of the time, I find genuine happiness in the most simple things, even though we’re taught to think it comes with the major events in life. And I also agree that it takes hard work to achieve and maintain, but I often find that the satisfaction lasts longer if you really worked for it 🙂

    Anika | chaptersofmay.com

  • thewheelchairteen

    I don’t know if you’ve ever seen the film: ‘Hector and the Search for Happiness’ but there’s a quote in there that I really liked which goes: ‘We should be less concerned with the pursuit of happiness and more occupied with the happiness of pursuit.’ It reminded me of your advice that happiness doesn’t depend on the greatness of your experience but rather on the frequentness of said experiences. Too many people aim towards one big, major thing that will make them happy and don’t care how they feel while they’re working towards it. Instead, they should find the small, frequent pockects of happiness that can be found in the pursuit of said goal. Thank you for spreading positivity and showing people the right way to think if they truly want to be happy!

    • Elle

      Exactlyyy! We should care about what we feel when we aim for those big moments too. The journey towards being happy should be enjoyed also. :)) <3 Love this comment, thanks so much for this my friend! :>

  • Michelle

    Great post! Happiness isn’t something you find or that falls out of the air, it’s something that you consciously create. It’s not about the destination, but about the journey.

    All the best, Michelle (michellesclutterbox.com)

    • Elle

      Hey, Michelle! Thanks so much, I’m glad you liked this post. I totally agree, it’s something that people can and should constantly create. <3

      You too! <3

  • Jaya Avendel

    Love this post! Happiness is created, not discovered. I think ways to be happy can be stumbled upon, but happiness is a mindset that anyone can learn to adopt.
    The little things are what make me happy. 🙂

  • Jeannie

    I like your take on this, very realistic and I agree with delay gratification rather than instant. Also happiness shouldnt be based only on what we have. thank you for sharing

  • thelifeofsasf8d7a2f225

    What a great post! It is so true that happiness takes work, it is definitely a skill that you can get better at over time, not a destination that you reach once you achieve some goal. So many people search for happiness in places, experiences, things, or even people but the reality is happiness is a choice you can make at practically any moment.

  • PoojaG

    So glad you’re able to blog again! I totally agree with everything you mentioned especially that it isn’t measure by having objects. I’ve also learnt over the years that different things bring different people happiness. You should find your own happiness instead of following others because what makes them happy may not necessarily make you happy.

  • nirajshah2003

    Brilliant blog post! Have you completed the online course “The Science of wellbeing” as that talks about a lot of these things. I love the point about how you shouldn’t rely on changing your circumstances to make you happy, as normally that doesn’t work. This is a blog everyone should read as its on such an important topic. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  • Queenie

    Interesting and insightful read. ❤ Happiness doesnt always depend on money, material, or other people. Sometimes, it’s in the small things, small wins, and even on our normal days. I enjoyed reading this. x

  • Kade Draven

    It’s a tough struggle. The old saying goes, “ignorance is bliss”, and I find the people that are the happiest are those that choose to look only to the things that help them feel stable. Thanks Elle!

  • Ming Qian

    Hey Elle, welcome back after your one month hiatus! It’s great to see you around again. Regarding happiness, I agree with you, and I also think that it is about the attitude that we take towards everything we do. We can ‘train’ ourselves to look at things in a positive light. Even when the going gets tough, the right mindset can keep us positive and hopeful too. Thanks for sharing!

    • Elle

      Thank you so much, I appreciate the luvv. I’m glad you enjoyed reading this, I totally agree, attitude is a huge factor too. You’re welcome! 🙂 <3

  • Yinda

    I strongly believe that happiness is intentional. You consciously decide go be happy, not waiting till joy comes to you. This post resonated with me. Loved it. Well done Elle. ☺

    • Elle

      Hi, Yinda! I agree with you. I’m glad that this post spoke to you, and thank you so much for being here. 🙂 Have a good week, luv. xx

  • Alicia Francis

    This is a beautiful article. I don’t think enough people understand the importance of true happiness. And you are right, there’s no short cut and instant gratification of stiff won’t make you actually happy. I also like that you mention the small moments. I think a lot of people have the belief that if you’re truly happy you’re in a good mood all the time. Loved reading this. Thanks for sharing

    • Elle

      I’m glad you enjoyed reading this post, Alicia! It can really be easy to be overlooked because, as humans, we keep wanting material things for us that it has become the basis of our well-being. We think that being well-off is actually something that would satisfy our overall well-being. I’m glad you appreciate this, thank you 😊✨

  • Clarissa

    Great post Elle! When things were all locked down in March I did a ton of reading about happiness. And people really do have a lot of misconceptions about it. But I 100% believe that happiness is a choice, a habit, something we have to work towards constantly like anything else worth having in life.

I would love to hear your thoughts!

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