The Zone - Volume 94
What is the relationship between hope and happiness? Is this something worthwhile to consider? This morning, on our daily walk, we were processing losses that we have recently experienced and the general sense of loss that we hear from others. One of the points that we thought about is how hope and happiness may be related and impact our mental, physical and spiritual health.
Hope can be defined as,” a feeling of expectation and desire for a certain thing to happen, a feeling of trust”. Happiness can be defined as “an emotional state characterized by feelings of joy, satisfaction, contentment and fulfillment…Happiness is generally linked to experiencing more positive feelings than negative.”
Hope is positively correlated with happiness as an individual experiences a greater sense of trust and positive outcomes. What then if one is experiencing more negative outcomes and losses? Perhaps our expectations of the world and our purpose in life plays into this process. In a study examining the relationship between subjective happiness and hope (Psychological Counseling, 2015) it was reported that subjective happiness was predicted positively by trust and confidence, positive future orientation, and social relations and personal value. It was further reported that subjective happiness was negatively explained by lack of perspective. The most significant predictor of subjective happiness was trust and confidence.
So, what does this all mean? As with much in life, our belief about the world impacts our focus of how we experience it. Key to this focus is our purpose in life, which answers the questions of why we get up in the morning? why we do what we do? and why are we here? Answers to these questions and others offers us insights into what can add to our sense of hope and happiness.
Other questions that you might want to think about.
What did your younger self look forward to doing after school?
·What makes you forget to eat?
What conversations do you have with your closest friends?
What makes you smile from the inside out?
What values do you have no compromise with?
If you knew you had one week left to live, how would you live it?
Realizing that our purpose in life is cultivated throughout our years, reflecting on where we have been, where we are now and what we see in the future can offer us motivation to stay the course.
Multiple losses can take a toll on each of us.
·Trust in self and others enhances one’s hope.
Walking can unclog our thoughts.
Develop meaningful connections with resilient-oriented individuals.
Identify your personal values and live by them.
Keep your purpose in life in mind during difficult times.
Things to Limit
Not planning for the U-turns of life.
Spending too much time in the negativity zone.
Having unrealistic expectations
Quote of the Week
“Only in the darkness can you see the stars”
~Martin Luther King Jr
In summary, as we continue to experience losses and all that goes with them, it is important that we look to see what we have accomplished to this point and assess what we need to do to continue on our voyage.
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The paraDocs are Dr. Francis L. Battisti, PhD, Psychotherapist, Distinguished Psychology Professor and former Executive V.P and Chief Academic Officer and Dr. Helen E. Battisti PhD, RDN, CDN, Chief Nutrition Officer, at SpNOD, Health Promotion Specialist, Research and Clinical Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and former Assistant Professor.
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