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How do you know if you are happy?

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I am happy when I have given myself what I want or worked hard and earned/gotten where I wanted in career or personal life. I cannot depend on anyone to give me happiness, how can they? They are not me, who feels does and says everything about myself.

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  • 2 months later...

To be happy, one has to study morality and hence philosophy. Philosophy has many classes of moral conducts, so the reader still has to refine these different moral in order to happy. A person who does not read and think will obtain his morals from daily life and his childhood and teen years which will be messy and not systematic. If he study from wrong sources, it would be worse.

Well, happiness has to be learnt also. Like many things, it needs to be studied, practised and experimented.

other forms of happiness include more commonsensical answers like eating ice cream, drinking a cold water when thristy, sex, singing freely, being massaged, eating nice food and having a nice conversation with friends.

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  • 5 months later...

To be truly happy, you have to work at it everyday, or every week. I reckon that one needs around 20 minutes per day,

or if you want, to do it weekly. it would be 2hr 20 minutes per week. Happiness requires constant learning and effort.

What is there to learn? one may ask. First there is definiton, then there is explanation, reasoning, hypothesis and validation.

YOu see ? there so much things to do. WHy only 20 mintues per day? because beside happiness, one also have to do other things in life also.

From my research, happiness is .. well.. i need to keep it a a secret first... haha.. as i have said.. i am constantly refining my understanding of happiness and also trying to see how happiness can be achieved for two cases... one is for me personally case.. and ther other is a happiness for human in general because we have to note that every humans has different environments...

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  • 2 weeks later...

I know this answer hasnt got anything to do with objectivism, but you know you are happy, when the underlying feeling when you wake up in the morning is "its great to be awake". Yeah, sure, you may sometimes feel like you could have slept an additional 30 minutes, or may feel annoyed that the neighbor kept you up all night with his loud music, but the underlying sensation even in these times is, "its great to be awake/alive".

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I know that when I am happy I don't feel miserable, tired, angry, or bored. Usually when I am painting and busy I am happiest. There have been many times where I have felt an overwhelmingly elated but I know that I am happiest when I am painting and working on a project because I feel completely content. I feel I can take my time on what I am doing while still looking forward to another thing. I feel no unease or worry. I am just there and content to be, and thrilled to be working on something and learning more. Though while I am always desperately lonely I don't feel any of it when I am happy. when I am happy I like being with my family but I don't feel a need to be social or to call people up, usually I feel that when I am upset. I think happiness is an overall feeling of being content and relaxed. When I am unhappy I talk nonstop, feel bored, and I feel terrible anxiety.

Edited by La Bue
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  • 4 weeks later...

I am in agreement with few of the posters above that a true, positive self judgment based on rational criteria is a requirement of happiness. However there is more to it. Happiness is a spiritual achievement (someone above called it an emotional background - which is also fitting) that also requires a particular mode of processing of one's life experiences. It is when positive experiences are kept in the foreground of one's consciousness while the negative experiences (setbacks, disappointments) are held dimly in the background. Such psychological approach when practiced consistently creates an emotional resiliency which allows people to recover from disappointments more quickly (and with less left over psychological baggage) and for happiness to flourish.

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  • 3 months later...
To be happy, one has to study morality and hence philosophy. Philosophy has many classes of moral conducts, so the reader still has to refine these different moral in order to happy. A person who does not read and think will obtain his morals from daily life and his childhood and teen years which will be messy and not systematic. If he study from wrong sources, it would be worse.

Well, happiness has to be learnt also. Like many things, it needs to be studied, practised and experimented.

other forms of happiness include more commonsensical answers like eating ice cream, drinking a cold water when thristy, sex, singing freely, being massaged, eating nice food and having a nice conversation with friends.

I was thinking along these lines also...because what happens if the standard upon which you try to find happiness is irrational?

...say, you find "happiness" in the torture of other people? You'd have a tough argument with such an individual using what has been provided so far as an explanation of happiness...

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I think happiness has a lot to do with purpose. Related to what JJJJ was saying - you wake up in the morning and your values are already gripping at you, making you want to get out of bed, get dressed, have breakfast, just so you can get on with them. I remember - and this isn't a proper metaphysical value, but it works in this limited context - when I was doing a job where I was promoting Guitar Hero 3. I had a copy of the game and two guitars sent to my house, and I was allowed to keep it during the 3 weeks of the campaign. During the campaign, I had to play the game in public and get people interested in trying it out. Well, I loved the game and wanted to get really good, so I'd be really gleefully getting out of bed, getting dressed, showered, fed, etc, all centered around getting better at this game. I felt really, really happy.

Now of course, it's limited, as I said, because values are more general than that, and more long lasting then just beating a game, but you see my point (I hope). You have this thing you like doing, and you're set a goal to achieve a certain level of it. Well, you don't just want to do it, you want to do it with a certain emotional commitment, and you want do it well. The rest of your life is all focused towards achieving this (or these) core values, and they give your life meaning in and of themselves.

The reverse is when you're so demotivated, so without purpose, that there's no point getting changed out of your pyjamas, breakfast could just be a packet of crisps, you go without a shower for weeks and just twiddle your thumbs, counting the minutes till you can go back to a comatose sleep. That's depression, and it's horrifying and cruel and to paraphrase from a quote of a quote in 'The Psychology of Self Esteem', anyone who has known that kind of deep emptiness never ever wants to go near it again and will gladly seize upon the opportunity to escape it (which is why I guess so many unhappy people turn to the easy solution of duty-filled ethics like those of religions or cults).

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what i can tell you is, i think you can know you're happy, when you compare the life you're living, have lived so far, and are going to live to all the other possible lifes you could be living or could have achieved to live, had you made other choices in your life, or where you to make other choices in the future than the ones you're going to make.

looking at all this and coming to the conclusion that what you are living is the best of all those possible lives should give you real happiness.

That would definitely make you happy, but I think there are other ways to become happy. Happiness does depend on how well you live(d), but the standard is not perfection. Else, there would be virtually no happy people.

...or maybe there really are virtually no happy people. That's a sobering thought.

Edited by ctrl y
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