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The 5 Pillars of Happiness




What truly brings us happiness in life? It may seem like something that is completely individual to each of us, but there is a simple recipe that needs to be followed to satisfy all of human nature. Let's delve into the five pillars of happiness (also known as the PERMA model for your scholars out there), and explore how to embrace them for a holistically happy life.



1.Positive Emotions:

At the heart of the PERMA model lies the cultivation of positive emotions. Nurturing feelings of joy, gratitude, love, and other uplifting emotions not only enhances our present moments but also fuels our overall happiness. To embark on this endeavor, let us actively seek out activities and experiences that elicit genuine joy, appreciating the beauty in everyday moments. Engaging in hobbies, spending quality time with loved ones, and practicing mindfulness can serve as powerful tools to amplify and sustain positive emotions.



2. Engagement:

Deep engagement in activities is vital to our happiness. The state of complete absorption, where we experience a sense of flow, ignites our spirits and fuels our sense of purpose. Whether through work, hobbies, or social interactions, we must strive to find things that challenge us and stir up our individual skills and talents. Identifying our passions and dedicating ourselves to them allows us to usher more engagement into our lives, unlocking a greater sense of fulfillment and happiness.




3. Relationships:

Our happiness is intricately woven into the fabric of our relationships and social connections. Cultivating strong bonds with family, friends, colleagues, and even our wider communities provide emotional support, shared experiences, and a profound sense of belonging. By investing time and effort into building and maintaining relationships, we forge a vibrant social network that acts as a shield against stress and illness.




4. Meaning:

Discovering meaning and purpose in life serves as a powerful catalyst for happiness. Having a clear sense of purpose fuels our motivation, igniting a passionate fire within us. There is an intrinsic connection between happiness and aligning our lives with our values, as well as making contributions beyond ourselves. By identifying our core values, establishing meaningful goals, and actively striving towards them, we forge a life filled with purpose, infusing every moment with happiness and fulfillment.




5. Accomplishment:

Celebrating our achievements and experiencing a sense of accomplishment nurtures our happiness. Setting realistic goals and steadily progressing towards them fuels our self-esteem and satisfaction. By breaking down significant goals into smaller, manageable milestones, we cultivate a sense of accomplishment along the way. Recognizing and appreciating our achievements regularly fuels our happiness and equips us with the resilience to conquer future challenges.


The PERMA model only reflects what our lives need intrinsically, but fails to address external needs for a happy life. The PERMA+ model below adds in the 4 external factors needed for a happy life.



6. Physical Health

No one can be truly happy if you are sick. Taking care of your body everyday ensures that you are treating yourself well and setting yourself up for success in the future. Daily exercise from walking, group classes, weightlifting, etc. is like a daily vitamin to ensure future health and happiness.




7. Mindset

A positive thought cannot live in a negative mind. Our minds think 24/7/365, whether we like it or not. Thought what gives us life, it is our soul. If you do not shape the thoughts that your mind creates, you will be a victim to your circumstances, instead of the captain of your ship. Go out of your way to create a "positive diet"- meaning anything you consume needs to reflect the type of life you want to lead. This includes not just the right type of food you put into your body, but also the music you listen to, the people you surround yourself with, the books you read, the movies you watch, and the jobs you work. Align these to the lifestyle you want to live and watch your life radically change.



8. Environment

Our environment can either help or hinder us. Try to keep a tidy, uncluttered work space and bedroom. These two places are the most important for us to relieve stress and to stay focused when engrossing ourselves in 'deep work'. Plants have also been a proven mood booster, not to mention a natural way to clean the air!




9. Economic Security

This has to be the most important piece of the puzzle. Our ability to have economic security is paramount to our happiness in life, but is directly affected by the other pillars of the PERMA model. Every other pillar, when well addressed, will build our economic security. A clear, supportive environment will support our engagement in work and make our work more meaningful. Engaging in meaningful work will leave us feeling accomplished and give us space to connect with our relationships, including self-care in the form of exercise. Our alignment with our life's purpose will ensure positive emotions and the economic security we crave to be completely and totally healthy, well, and whole.



As we traverse the intricate tapestry of life, let us keep in mind that happiness is not a fleeting destination, but rather an ongoing journey. The PERMA model provides a profound framework for cultivating happiness by emphasizing positive emotions, engagement, relationships, meaning, and accomplishment. By consciously integrating these pillars into our lives, we can elevate our overall well-being and craft a profoundly fulfilling existence. Embark on this transformative journey, and illuminate the world with your happiness.


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