New research on happiness has spilled the beans. Buying “physical assets” like a new home, a luxury car, and toys for the big boys etc doesn’t make us any happier.
Researchers have found that immediately or soon after the acquisition we would start aspiring for the next model or the costlier piece thereby rendering happiness elusive.
They have termed this condition the “Hedonistic Treadmill”. Parallel is drawn to the act of running continuously on a treadmill, without literally reaching anywhere. This finding supports the argument that money does not buy happiness and that the pursuit of money as a way to become happy and contented is futile.
How can one become Happy, then?
It was found that True Happiness is experienced when one follows one’s passion, exercises one’s inherent strengths or undertakes tasks that make a difference in the lives of others.
Convinced? So out with the Treadmill….
Just the other day, during a pep talk to students, a young enthusiast posed this question- “Why are you advising us to be humble when this world values first impressions and self confidence more than humility?” Though I answered to the best of my modest capability, I wasn’t quite contented with my own reply.
So after reaching home, I decided to go Pal Sourcing on this subject. I posted this query -“In just 2 words, give your tips on how to be loved by all” on FB and tagged many of my good friends. In the comments that flowed in, many of them wrote “Be Humble“. I couldn’t but compare these comments with the responses to another query-“How to be successful?” that I had posted earlier. I remember very well that none of my good friends had brought up the topic of humility then. This aggravated by doubt- Were people attributing humility to sweet, submissive also-rans and pride and boisterousness with Success? If the responses of my Pals were an indication, yes they were. Could this be true? – I tried to seek out empirical research on the topic. So Google Ahoy.
Interestingly, research on humility showed that this trait has great value. Humility has been linked with better academic performance, job performance, and excellence in leadership. Surprising!!!it was found to be a distinguishing trait of CEO’s of successful organizations. Moreover organizations with humble leaders were found to have more engaged employees and less voluntary turnover.
Research further showed that instead of having low esteem, humble people were self regarding as well as other-regarding. They valued the welfare of other people and had the ability to “forget themselves” as well, when appropriate. Not bad at all…..
Humble people were found to have better social relationships, and tended to be more forgiving, grateful, and cooperative. A recent set of studies also showed that people who are humble tend to be more generous with both their time and their money.
So the verdict is out- shunning arrogance and embracing humility will make you better loved as well as super successful. For our own good and the good of humanity, let us therefore set out to cultivate humility. (In ourselves first, preferably)
Humility for Humanity– I love the way it sounds.