What is Happiness?
The concept of happiness has been debated by many philosophers. Happiness has been the subject of a great deal of international research.
Happiness is a ‘state of being’ it is much more than doing things that just bring a smile to your face.
There is a huge quantity of international research in this area and even an academic journal about happiness. Higher ratings of happiness are associated with longevity and may help prevent diseases such as coronary heart disease and even some cancers
What can we do to enhance our sense of happiness?
40% of happiness may be determined by intentional activities, 50% genetic and 10% life circumstances (Lyubomirsky, Sheldon & Schkade, 2005). So there is a great deal we can do to develop our own happiness.
Targeting happiness is also possible. Am I happier now than last year or the year before?
Identify the key activities or situations that promote happiness and focus on doing more of them.
Rating your happiness.
With people we may support in some way focusing on happiness rather than challenging behaviours may help develop a person to be more resilient. Here are 2 useful questions.
Question 1 In general how happy do you feel right this moment?
Rate this using the following scale. 10 point scale ranging from 10= feeling ecstatic, joyous, fantastic to 0= utterly depressed or completely down
Now rate the following:
Question 2 On average what percentage of the time do you feel happy
For question 1 the average answer = 6.9
For question 2 the average is 54%
How did you do?
Atlass practitioners will routinely ask the people they support and their support staff to rate themselves.
(adapted from Fordyce, 1998)