Pursue Purpose, Not Happiness
The pursuit of happiness is misguided
I see so many conversations about happiness ― what it is and how to achieve it.
The pursuit of happiness is even built into the founding documents of the United States.
But happiness isn't guaranteed. Nor is it likely to appear if you’re hellbent on pursuing it.
The secret, I think, is to live a life of value and virtue. To connect with your true self and to connect that with others.
In doing so, happiness will find you, not the other way around.
“The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson
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I guess I've pursued "happiness," in the form of usefulness and service to others. The world is also often equated with joy and I'm suspicious of joy because I'm not interested in experiencing the departure of joy if that makes sense. I think the stoic in me just prefers an even keel so I can get on with my work!
This is right on target. I see these comparisons to the Nordic countries happiness charts and the like and think it's a misguided target. Maybe content and a life well lived is a better goal.