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It’s the most wonderful time of the year, with holiday cheer and charity making the world a happier place ... even after Christmas.
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Did you know that the happiness
you feel from giving to others and bettering yourself as well as the community
and world is called eudaimonic well-being, and this trait is one you can strive
toward on a daily basis? You see, there are two types of happiness a person can
experience. Both rank equally on an
emotional level when researchers polled thousands of people, but there is one
huge difference between them. One form
of happiness betters our over-all health and well-being. That’s right,
happiness effects our health.
While most people assume that
they are eudaimonically happy, the truth is that intrinsic pleasure rains
supreme in our society. That is, until
the holidays arrive. There is something
about the season that motivates everyone to do better and be better. We work toward helping others. Understand though that there is plenty of
money being thrown around, and quite a bit of family arguments taking place as
well. But as a whole, our society is
striving for a more peaceful and nurturing existence during the holidays.
Research taken over the last
decade has found some pretty fascinating links to just how life-altering it is
to be pursuing true joy and happiness over superficial self-gratification. It
turns out that eudaimonic happiness shifts the immune cells within the body,
essentially changing the genetic makeup of a person for the better. This leads
The research also shows just how
happiness affects a community. A
community that practices giving, helping, and supporting one another for the
better of the group as a whole will live longer and healthier lives than
communities built upon individuals only bettering themselves.
Those who live a hedonically
happy lifestyle are happy – there is no denying that – but when an individual
is only happy at ‘surface level’ it has a negative impact on the body (and our
culture). During the holidays, these are the people seen as “Scrooges,” or the ones trying to compete for the title
of “Best Gift Giver.” Neither are
productive to the world, but the individual still feels happiness; although it
tends to be shorter lived and accompanied by stress or other negative emotions.
Could it be possible to continue
the acts of kindness and joy throughout the year? Many of today’s parents are striving to raise
their children in this manner. Although,
most don’t know just how valuable this lifestyle is! Surrounded by flashing
lights, batteries, and things, it may
be hard for a child to see the worth in looking past themselves and toward our
earth and others. The holidays are a great gateway to begin transitioning
towards a more eudaimonic well-being.
The key is to know that the journey will be different for each person,
and expecting a child to lead without a proper example may be difficult.
Our culture is in a health crisis
– and a hedonic happiness lifestyle crisis – and it is time to start shifting
the pendulum… Not only for our health, but for our over-all well-being.
The keys to
a truly happier life, as researched by The Harvard School of Public Health,
Emotional Vitality: A sense of Enthusiasm, Hopefulness, Engagement
Optimism: The perspective that good things will happen, and that one’s actions account for the good things that occur in life.
Support: Supportive network of family and friends
Proper Self-Regulation: Choosing healthy behaviors such as physical activity and eating well; and avoiding risky behaviors such as unsafe sex, drinking alcohol to excess, and regular overeating.
have also found that the following 10 habits are scientifically linked to
happiness, with acceptance being the number one predictor of reaching true joy.
Altruistic emotions are
undoubtedly a part of the holiday traditions. Spreading joy and love to
everyone around you should not end as a new calendar year begins. Take the time to self-evaluate and prioritize
your level of happiness this season. You
deserve to experience true joy – and your body will thank you.
Elizabeth MacDonald, a creative
content writer at My Baby’s
Heartbeat Bear, a brand that makes recordable stuffed
animals, the best
pregnancy gift, to record your baby’s ultrasound heartbeat.
With wine in hand, Elizabeth tries to find the positives hidden in the messes
of parenthood. There never seem to be enough hours in the day, but filling the
minutes with memorable moments keeps her smiling.
Elizabeth MacDonald, a creative content writer at My Baby’s Heartbeat Bear, a brand that makes recordable stuffed animals, the best pregnancy gift, to record your baby’s ultrasound heartbeat. With wine in hand, Elizabeth tries to find the positives hidden in the messes of parenthood. There never seem to be enough hours in the day, but filling the minutes with memorable moments keeps her smiling.
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