What comes first, success or happiness?

Posted on April 23, 2015. Filed under: Coaching | Tags: , , |

A reader recently asked what I thought about  the balance between aiming to be successful (tangible results like money) and aiming for happiness (personal serenity.)  Very clever question, as many people would say the first leads to the second.

However recent research described by Shawn Achor in his rapid, but humourous Ted Talk proclaims exactly the opposite.

The moment we reach our goal, success becomes embedded in the next achievement.  Big house, bigger house, biggest house. First job, great job, CEO. Frustration accumulates.

However, if we choose to think happy now, we can trigger psychological responses which enhance our abilities to think, learn, and act.  Positive Psychology.  Learning to scan the world for what’s working can train our brains to move towards what brings us happiness.

Shawn shares 5 simple-to-execute activities. Right there at our finger tips, right now, we have the possibility to make a difference for our personal fulfilment, while impacting our environment as well.

One last tid-bit: while he talks way too fast, it is impossible to watch this talk without laughing.  Step one to feeling happier!


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One Response to “What comes first, success or happiness?”

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I like this post. However, I think that happiness equals success. Research has continually shown though that you do need money to be happy– but only to a certain point. You need enough to comfortably make ends meet and have a sense of security. Beyond that, it doesn’t make much of a difference in regards to being happy.


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