Could happiness come from rejecting what we’re expected to take?

Could happiness come from rejecting what we’re expected to take?

Do we always need to say yes to what’s offered?

Do we always need to accept those job promotions, pay increases, offers to upgrade etc?

Today I read this fascinating story about a Russian man whose considering NOT accepting a $1,000,000 prize (see here).

Now I’ve no way of knowing if this man is happy or not; but that’s not the point of this blog posting. The point is that I’m frequently observing the world around me in terms of what brings, and what doesn’t bring happiness and this story stimulated more than a few thoughts and questions within my internal dialogue!

I’ve written before about my belief (which, I should note, I still largely hold) that happiness may well come to those who say “yes” more often; yes to life, yes to opportunities, yes to trying new things. But this story got me thinking about saying “no”.

How often do we say “yes” to things because we think that really is the only sensible option? Surely, for example, we couldn’t turn down a job promotion; or a pay rise; or that offer to access resources/information/whatever on the internet for FREE!

But what if we don’t really need these things? What if we don’t really need more money or more responsibilities or more information or a new mobile phone? What if happiness really comes from simplicity?

Now this rant isn’t really about money, or anything else I’ve mentioned up to this point. What it’s about is making decisions with more awareness rather than automatically saying “yes” or “no” without really and fully considering the consequences; or without reflecting on the reasons for making the decisions (is it, for example, because that’s what we think “society” would expect of us?)

I hope this makes sense; and I hope the next time you’re offered $1million dollars you’ll carefully think about what’s the right decision for you!