Happiness And Satisfaction

Happiness is a choice until it isn't...Do not overestimate the significance of that which you lack; the satisfaction is always fleeting once you have it. Overestimating the significance is actually what makes the satisfaction fleeting.

This is why people have this dumb idea that happiness is meant to be an eternal mystical force that lasts forever. Happiness is an emotional response to perceived satisfied wants and wants are insatiable. It's not supposed to last; satisfaction is temporary; hence, everyone has a threshold for happiness before diminishing returns. It's no big deal; it's simple biology and economics. However, how can you go about achieving a desired result if you don't overestimate the significance? How do you then motivate or ginger yourself? You have to see a desired outcome as something beyond your current situation and outlook; it has to be enthusiastic (I think).

But there's a problem; if I perform a task (meeting a deadline), I'll be satisfied, not necessarily happy. It's just a job done. But if I argue [logic] with strangers online or try to learn concepts beyond me, I'll be happy and satisfied. So, what gives?! You can be satisfied without being happy, but you can't be happy without being satisfied. In other words, happiness and satisfaction can be separate feelings when we're talking about satisfaction alone, but for happiness, satisfaction is implicit; it's a given. But the satisfaction has to be defined by the person. This is what determines happiness. 

Perhaps the distinction [if any] between happiness and satisfaction lies in the degree of freedom [freedom of choice] in the choice of tasks to fulfill. The distinction may be between "Wants" and "Needs." I earlier defined happiness as "an emotional response to perceived satisfied wants." 'Wants' reflect free agency and personal volition. 'Needs' are requirements and necessities. But needs and wants do overlap sometimes; I want to buy the drink, 'Five Alive pulpy orange,' I need money to buy pulpy oranges, and I want enough money to buy all the pulpy oranges any time I want.

But if I can get all the pulpy I want at any time, there's no sense of lack to substantiate the happiness. This is what people mean by "money can't buy happiness"; it's the point of saturation. Bringing it to a close, we've established that happiness is linked to 'Wants' and 'wanting' a thing reflects free Agency (not free will), and wants are insatiable, meaning happiness is temporary. That means someone must have the capacity to want if they're to experience happiness.

So, contentment itself may bring happiness; it's a choice of Free Agency. But contentment, in a way, prevents 'wanting more' so... this want is satiable, making the happiness permanent?! Well, contentment entails wanting to not want more. That means the happiness comes from rejecting the temptation to 'want more'; this is insatiable as there are countless things you'd have to keep ignoring the same way the other side has countless things to keep wanting.

In summary, happiness is a choice, but only when the needs are not so overwhelming that they totally limit your ability to make a choice. In this regard, contentment is a privilege.

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