what is happiness And how can we be happy? These questions are integral to the human experience, but their answers can be elusive. We can approach them from different perspectives, for example through philosophy or psychology. We can also use our personal perspective on our feelings and goals as we navigate through life. But can we bring happiness to a scientific approach?
Meik Wiking, CEO of the Happiness Research Institute in Copenhagen, believes we can. The institute combines qualitative and quantitative methods to gain insights into well-being, happiness and quality of life.
His mission? To educate business and community decision-makers about the causes and effects of happiness, and in turn, make subjective well-being part of the policy debate at local, national and international levels.
We met Meik Wiking at the TNW 2022 and asked him the big questions about happiness. If you want to get his insights in full, check out the video embedded at the top of this article. Alternatively, you can watch it right here.
“Happiness is a dish with many different ingredients,” Wiking told us. “It’s about experiencing positive emotions on a daily basis, being content with life overall, and having a strong sense of purpose or meaning.”
Happiness is above all an emotion, explained Wiking, and as such is subjective. This means that individual perceptions of it differ, so each person can judge for themselves whether they are happy or not.
So what can we do to cultivate this emotion and be happier? Wiking suggests that there is an ABC to happiness too. A stands for “act”, B stands for “belong” and C stands for “commit”. In other words, these are the three steps: doing something active, doing something together with other people and doing something meaningful.
But is happiness just a matter of perception or do external circumstances also play a role? And can the whole world be happier?
Click here to get his answers and watch the full interview.
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