Selflessness and feeling in harmony with others coincides with greater happiness, study finds

Selflessness and feeling in harmony with others coincides with greater happiness, study finds

via PsyPost by Beth Ellwood

A study published in the Journal of Individual Differences suggests there’s more to happiness than feeling satisfied with one’s life. The study found that experiencing the self as interdependent coincided with increased happiness through feeling greater harmony with others.

It is commonly believed that a person’s happiness depends on their evaluation of their life and their well-being. But study authors Nicolas Pellerin of Toulouse University and his colleagues wanted to explore an alternative model of happiness called the Selflessness/Self-centeredness Happiness Model (SSHM). This approach maintains that selflessness and self-centeredness are two aspects of self-based psychological functioning that carry different consequences for happiness.

“As Westerners, we tend to believe that the sources of happiness are limited to an accumulation of pleasures, resources, the satisfaction of needs or the achievements we reach in life,” Pellerin told PsyPost. “However, the pursuit of pleasures and achievements could diminish the quality and stability of our happiness in many ways, especially when the person is strongly egocentric, that is, strongly preoccupied with their own happiness. Indeed, the more a person craves his or her own happiness, the more unhappy he or she will be when bad things happen and the less satisfied, he or she will be when good things happen.”

“Given the limitation of the egocentric pursuit of happiness, is there another way to achieve qualitative and stable happiness? According to a new model of happiness, SSHM, there are two distinct psychological functioning at the source of happiness.”

Self-centeredness involves the feeling of being an independent and autonomous being. This mindset involves seeking pleasure by maximizing positive outcomes for oneself, leading to fluctuations in happiness that are dependent on external stimuli. On the other hand, selflessness and the feeling of being interdependent promotes lasting happiness, since one’s happiness is no longer dictated by external events. It has been proposed that selflessness gives rise to feelings of harmony, inner peace, and what is called “authentic-durable happiness.”

… keep reading the full & original article HERE