Our happiness depends on us

Written by: Dra. Connie Capdevila Brophy
Published: | Updated: 29/08/2022
Edited by: Top Doctors®

Little tricks, guides, and advice on how to achieve the universal human goal: happiness and wellbeing


As recognized by the United Nations, happiness and wellbeing are universal objectives and aspirations for all humans. The path to achieving these goals used to be the task of philosophers, but today it is scientific evidence that leads the way, thanks to the work of neuroscientists and psychologists.

We know, for example, that only 10% of happiness depends on external factors. If we win the lottery, initially we will feel an enormous pleasure, but in just a short time we will return to the level of satisfaction we had before, once we assimilate great news, we return to our regular frame of mind.

Another 50% of our happiness is related to genetic factors, the tendency to worry or not, whether we are optimistic or pessimistic, rigid or flexible.

The good news is that 40% of our happiness depends on us: what we do, how we interpret what happens to us, what personal skills we utilize, our social relationships, our routines, and our activities….

The basic ingredients for achieving personal happiness include; maintain a network of social relationships, find meaning in your life, have goals that are consistent with your values, and enjoy what you do. For this last one, you need to first discover what makes you enter a state of flow. On the other hand, you will also need to be adventurous and get out of your comfort zone once in awhile.

We have to be conscious of our inner dialogue: there are people who have a tendency towards negative thoughts, or to interpret what happens to them in a pessimistic way. For example, two people stuck in traffic can interpret the situation in a very different way; one may feel trapped and anxious, or feel that these things are always happening to him or her, while the other may decide to take advantage of this opportunity and listen to music while waiting. We are responsible for what we think and, being conscious of this can help us change our thoughts.

Experts also say that it’s important to enjoy the small details in our lives using our feelings and giving our full attention to each and every moment. Happy people show a tendency to be open and have fewer prejudices against others.

Happiness does not imply an absence of negative feelings, but it does have a direct impact on our lives: we live longer, we are in better health, we are more creative, and are more successful. And we also know that our satisfaction with our life affects family and friends. As Louis Armstrong said “keep on smilin’ Cause when you’re smilin’, the whole world smiles with you”.

*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection
Dra. Connie Capdevila Brophy

By Dra. Connie Capdevila Brophy

Dr. Capdevila has more than 30 years of experience in different areas of Psychology, both in Spain and the United States. She completed her training in New York where she served as Director of the Inwood Community Services Alcohol and Mental Health Treatment Clinic and worked at the Ackerman Institute for Family Therapy and Roberto Clemente Family Guidance Center. At present, she combines her private practice with the tasks of professor of research at the Autonomous University of Barcelona. She is a member of the Board of the Section for Conflict Resolution Alternatives of the Official College of Psychology of Catalonia, as well as coordinator of the working group on coordination of parenting (separations of high conflict). It is also authorized by the Generalitat de Catalunya as Family Mediator / Divorce

*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection

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