Ultimately, we seek happiness. In psychology, when happiness is studied scientifically, it's known as "subjective wellbeing." One of the important outcomes of the study of happiness, or subjective wellbeing, is this: Extrinsic (externally-focused) goals are: 1. Money 2. Image 3. Status. Extrinsic, externally-focused goals have been empirically studied, and these goals do not correlate with happiness. Intrinsic (internally-focused) goals are: 1. Personal growth 2. Healthy relationships 3. Service to the community. These have all been empirically studied as well, and these goals DO correlate with happiness.
This is why counseling and psychotherapy continue to thrive; because in counseling, psychotherapy, and personal and relational coaching, the focus is on enhancing people's intrinsic goals. To find real happiness, so many people first need to stop and make a 180 degree turnaround. You can't get there if you're not headed in the right direction.
Likewise, happiness is more than just overcoming painful emotions or solving difficult life problems. These things are important, and can bring great peace and comfort where there used to be turmoil and pain. But to achieve true happiness, there must be something on the PLUS side of our personality and our lives. In psychology, the opposite of emotional problems and mental disorders are the character strengths and virtues. This perspective is known as Positive Psychology, and the qualities of Positive Psychology are most strongly associated with living a happy and fulfilling life. As we focus on developing in these six main areas, our happiness grows. They are: Wisdom and knowledge, Justice, Courage, Temperance, Love, and Transcendence. Each of these main areas has several subheadings as well.
Whether the need is deep-level psychotherapy, objective feedback and wise counsel, or motivational coaching, I can help point you and guide you in the direction that real happiness can be found. Please contact me and I would be happy to talk with you further. EE