The “pursuit of happiness” is one of the inalienable rights cited in the American Declaration of Independence from Great Britain. But, they should have demanded the “pursuit of enduring happiness.”
What’s the difference?
Happiness is temporary and can be had many different ways. From enjoying good food, to being entertained, to enjoying fine weather.
But enduring happiness, as the words imply, is a greater sense of well-being that does not come and go like our emotions and the sensual awareness of pleasure and pain.
The New Message book Wisdom from the Greater Community, (Volume 1) uses an entire chapter to define enduring happiness and describes what it feels like:
Happiness seems like an emotion because that is how everyone is used to thinking of it—lots of laughter. But I am speaking of something that is an abiding sense of purpose, meaning and direction in life. It gives you a sense of satisfaction and makes it possible for you to truly relax.
When you know that you are doing the right things, engaging with the right people, for the rights reasons, this produces a deep grounding of enduring happiness and peace that cannot be shaken.
I still enjoy diversions, good food, lively company and making money. But there is greater satisfaction from doing meaningful work in the world.
And I’m not alone.
Enduring Happiness Through Work
In survey after survey by human resource departments in large corporations, the #1 motivator of employees is “meaningful work.” To everyone’s great surprise, “money” is not the biggest motivator at work.
Because money produces temporary happiness and provides for other temporary pleasures. People inherently KNOW that meaning is more important than money in their lives. This search for enduring happiness is why people will gladly work at a non-profit organization for less money.
Interested in learning more about Enduring Happiness? Read chapter 22 of Wisdom from the Greater Community.