Is Purpose Enough to Make You Happy?
Can finding and acting on your purpose make you happy? That question is up for debate depending on who you ask these days. For years, we were told to follow our passion; find the thing that makes you happy.
Happiness transcends multiple areas of our life, including our mental and physical wellness. Research shows that people genuinely believe that having a purpose in life provides a baseline and direction in life, contributing to a higher level of happiness.
What is Happiness?
What does happiness mean to you? Happiness is defined as having a distinct appreciation for all aspects of your life. Happiness is not an emotion that lingers in a constant state. It often cycles as some form of an adverse event or emotion can intrude and replace it with unpleasant feelings.
Happiness delivers a sense of inner peace. Many people describe it as being a sense of contentment, joy, relief, stability, freedom and being without worry. Happiness has powerful effects on our physical and mental health including:
• Enhanced immunity
• The decrease in their risk of heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure
• Regular participation in physical activities
• Healthy sleep habits
• Fewer stress hormones in circulation
• Helps to provide pain control
• A longer life expectancy
• A need to consume healthier foods (i.e., whole grains, vegetables, fruits, lean meats)
Signs of Happiness
There are tell-tale signs of your arrival in the land of joy. Close your eyes and think about the last time you truly enjoyed an experience. You might have found yourself not worrying about the time. Perhaps you were productive and delivered the best results of your life.
You might have even had the opportunity to put someone else’s needs above your own without having any concerns that the outcome would negatively impact you.
Research shows that finding happiness demands that we identify those things that:
• Help us to feel good and delivers pleasure
• Allow us to participate in producing positive results to our fullest satisfaction fully
• Gives us the impression that we are doing something useful and beneficial to others that allows us to do work that supports our values
Additionally, you can take action to boost your happiness naturally. Here are several things are known to promote happiness:
Practice meditation. Meditation can help to improve your self-awareness of those things that make you happy while also reducing those feelings of stress.
Get some sleep. Do not misjudge the power of a good night’s rest. Sleep can be a powerful ally in producing positive results for a state or feeling of contentment.
Practice positivity. You can increase your happiness by focusing on positive things and minimizing those negative thoughts. The reduction of negative thoughts will help to rewire your brain and rather than continually zeroing in on negative thoughts, your mind will begin to seek out those thoughts that generate a lighter feeling.
Knowing Your Purpose and the Role of Happiness
Understanding your meaning or purpose in life is the key to happiness. Studies demonstrate that having a purpose in life can positively decrease stress levels and reduce anxiety. This impact can help to minimize recreational drug use and lessen depression episodes.
Having a purpose requires us to build new relationships or improve our existing ones. Your goal has to include identifying positive exchanges that occur within these relationships and using those positive exchanges to define or further validate your purpose.
Relationships that yield negative results are a non-starter, and you will have to identify ways to rid yourself of those experience to truly live in your purpose.
Another positive aspect of knowing your purpose is that it allows you to create goals that serve as motivation and provide milestones for achievement in your life.
When we elect to do things or set goals that are outside of our purpose, it can cause conflict within our soul, leaving us with feelings of dissatisfaction with our lives and the people around us.
In summary, knowing your purpose can prove beneficial in reducing feelings of frustration, dissatisfaction or depression. Purpose is enough to make you happy because it helps you to formulate your overall goals and desires in life.
Electing to lead a life outside of your purpose can set you up for disappointment in multiple facets of your life.