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The Constitution only guarantees the American people the right to pursue happiness. You have to catch it yourself. ~Author unknown, commonly attributed to Benjamin Franklin
Happiness is an elusive and subjective topic. There is no single answer to being happy and there is no right or wrong to being happy. Happiness is tied into all those other ambiguous things like love, respect, success and creativity.
In his article Capturing Creativity for Psychology Today, Robert Epstein stated that “greater creativity breeds greater happiness.”
Epstein asserted that creativity is learned and not mystical therefore one could conclude that happiness could be learned.
In studying animal behaviors Epstein noticed that given a certain kind of training novel behavior would emerge in what could be described as creative.
“Novel behavior is truly new, but the particular novel behavior that emerges in a new situation depends on the particular behaviors that were established previously–that is, on prior knowledge. Creativity, in short, is not something mystical; it’s an extension of what you already know.”
If Epstein’s studies have shown that creative people are happier than why isn’t the population as a whole painting and writing and sculpting in their spare time to keep their spirits up? Is it because of social norms or because of myths about what is creative?
This week let us look at what it means to be happy. There are a lot of sources on the internet to help us with this. The Happiness Project is one of the first blogs that come to mind that focuses on behaviors that lead to happiness.
Our focus here is for those people who wish to focus on creativity as their source of happiness. Here are a few questions to ask this week. You can write or draw your answers as you contemplate them or you can just reflect to yourself. I have found writing in my journal to be a fabulous way to focus on what makes me happy. There is no right or wrong answer here!
The only point to this exercise is to discover yourself in order to be more fulfilled as a creative or to add more beauty to your life.
- What behaviors do you engage in before a creative moment?
- Do you feel happy after a creative moment? Content?
- Are you happy? Are you happy sometimes?
- Are you unhappy? Are you unhappy sometimes? What do you crave when you are unhappy?
Please feel free to write your answers in the comments! If you blog, link us up!