create meanings

happiness

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What is the meaning of life?

Most of us have asked this tricky question, especially in adversity or when burning out. Do you have the answer now? Some people are lucky that they are always clear about their life purpose. Some people discover their meaning of life while suffering. Some people are not sure about it yet and some may have changed their meaning of life. What is the meaning of my life? My answer, at this moment, is to inspire you to live a more meaningful life.

Many philosophers, psychiatrists, and writers have their unique views on the meaning of life. Among these different views, I can see a shared value regarding the meaning of life. In general, that is to do something loving for others. That’s it? That’s the truth about the meaning of life? Sounds too simple to be true. No matter what the truth is, we have the freedom to decide our own meaning of life.

live to inspire

Emily Esfahani Smith, the author of The Power Of Meaning, thinks our lives become meaningful when we have strong relationships with others, cooperate with others for the good of society, reframe our stories in a more positive way, and connect to nature or god. Her four pillars of meaning: belongings, purpose, storytelling, and transcendence, is psychology-driven and pragmatical for real life. We are doing these activities in daily life, aren’t we? Do we simply take a meaningful life for granted?

achieve, love, suffer, hope

According to psychiatrist and Holocaust survivor Viktor Frankel, we can discover the meaning in life in three different ways: by achievement; by loving someone; and by suffering. When Viktor was suffering in the concentration camp, he found the meaning of life by treating patients and writing his classic book Man’s Search For Meaning. In his view, what human needs is the striving and struggling for a worthwhile goal, a freely chosen task, to prevent existential vacuum (inability to find or create meaning in life). In other words, just do something of your choice that makes you feel fulfilled. What goal do you choose to live a meaningful life?

Life ultimately means taking the responsibility to find the right answer to its problems and to fulfill the tasks which it constantly sets for each individual.

What matters, therefore, is not the meaning of life in general but rather the specific meaning of a person’s life at a given moment.

The more one forgets himself—by giving himself to a cause to serve or another person to love—the more human he is and the more he actualizes himself

work play love

Paul Thagard, a philosopher who specializes in cognitive science, summarises the meaning of life as work, play, and love in his book The Brain And The Meaning Of Life. Balancing these three areas can satisfy our psychological needs: competence, autonomy, and relatedness. Cool, keep working, playing, and loving. And most importantly keep balancing.

serve others

Many of my Christian friends’ meaning of life is to serve God by serving others. They choose to believe the meaning of life lies in religion. Philosopher John Cottingham also thinks so and he points out the spiritual benefits in his book On The Meaning Of Life: the care of the soul, the tranquility of mind, release from the false pursuits of egoism and material gain, a closer awareness of the mystery of life, an affirmation of its profundity and its blessings.

contribute & cooperate

Psychotherapist Alfred Adler’s finding of the meaning of life is to contribute to the whole and cooperate with others. I feel that his book  What Life Should Mean To You is more like preparing readers to be good parents. Because he stresses the importance of parents’ sufficient love for children (especially for children with imperfect organ, pampered children, and neglected children) can help raise a good person instead of a criminal.

final thought

After all, we are not alone in this world so our meaningful lives must involve other people. When it comes to your meaning of life, only you can live it for yourself.

Happy reading

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live well

happiness

 

Why are the Danes so happy?

Danes are living a simple and slow life. They are happy because they have a good welfare model and a concept of hygge. Their welfare model is able to reduce risk, uncertainty and anxiety among its citizens. The Danish culture hygge is also the key to happiness. What exactly is hygge? The Little Book of Hygge, which is totally the bible about hygge, can give you a comprehensive explanation. It’s my favorite book about happiness! I’m grateful that a friend of mine gave this book to me as a gift. I feel hyggelig every time I read it. Plus, I love and admire so much about what Meik Wiking, the author of The Little Book of Hygge, has been doing! His job sounds like my dream job. He studies what makes people happy by focusing on well-being, happiness, and quality of life. He found the Happiness Research Institute to explore the causes and effects of human happiness. He is one of my favorite idols.

How to make a hygge corner at home

Meik suggests how to make a Hygge Emergency Kit to boost your hyggeness. That’s sweet. But I prefer to make a hygge corner at home more, where I can hygge every day and night. I guess everyone’s hygge corner is different and unique. What would you like to have for your hygge corner? I love to put the followings to mine.

Books — Reading is hyggelig to me and books are my brain food

Photos — awesome photos with friends and family are warm and sweet

Handwritten cards — birthday cards and Christmas cards are loving and human

Plants — who doesn’t like nature? I love greenery and flowers

Diffuser — life is good when smelling good

Music — something I can’t live without

 

Make your own hygge corner today.

Creative doing!