Synthesizing happiness

A few TED talks that rate a mention, with the implications I draw from them:

Barry Schwartz: The paradox of choice

  • Point: Choice limits our ability to synthesize happiness. It increases our expectations through retrospective value-comparison of other options. Gilbert makes this point as well, but notes that we tend to choose paths that keep our options open, to our detriment.
  • Implication: We must make a commitment to a single option, path or way of life, with a courgeous leap into faith, with no regrets and no looking back, and then choose to be happy.

Dan Gilbert: Why are we happy? Why aren’t we happy? and Exploring the frontiers of happiness

  • Point: We frequently misjudge the extent to which different circumstances projected into the future will make us happy/unhappy (pre-frontal cortex).
  • Implication: Be cautious in regards to ‘delayed gratification’; don’t worry about the future.
  • Point: We ‘synthesize happiness’; with time we will reinterpret the world and our past in order that we are happier.
  • Implication: Regret won’t last, bad circumstances won’t seem as bad in the future, you and I ‘get over it’ – all can be forgiven, so just speed up the process.
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One Response to “Synthesizing happiness”

  1. lyricspoetic Says:

    wow, a lot of wisdom here… Thank you

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