Eudaimonic Well-Being —

“Is happiness enough for a good life? This question is becoming increasingly prominent in positive psychology. Is feeling good an adequate measure of someone’s quality of life? Do we really know what it means to be subjectively well when we assess someone’s subjective well-being?

Problems with existing approaches to happiness

Many researchers believe we don’t, saying that the current definition of well-being came about almost accidentally: first of all, researchers wanted to develop well-being questionnaires (because they needed to evaluate various interventions), then they derived the definition of well-being from these questionnaires, without paying much attention to whether they actually captured the richness of human wellness and happiness.

It is probably true to say that contemporary literature on well-being largely ignores the contributions of humanistic and existential thinkers like Maslow, Rogers, Jung and Allport. It also doesn’t pay much attention to the complexity of philosophical conceptions of happiness, even though philosophy has dealt with this subject since long before psychology even existed.

Can someone be truly fulfilled without knowing what he or she is living for, what the point is, the meaning of one’s existence? Is it possible to be truly well without moving a finger to change something in oneself, without growing and developing as a person? This is what is missing from the current mainstream theories of well-being - the notions of growth, self-actualisation and meaning.

The current theories of well-being seem to give a one-sided, rather bare picture of well-being. In fact, what they do seem to cover quite well is the notion of hedonism - striving for maximisation of pleasure (positive affect) and minimisation of pain (negative affect). This hedonic view can be traced to Aristippus, a Greek philosopher who believed that the goal of life is to experience maximum pleasure, and later on to Utilitarian philosophers.

An alternative to hedonic happiness

Recently, another approach to a good life has risen out of the historical and philosophical debris - the idea of eudaimonic well-being. Aristotle was the originator of the concept of eudaimonia (from daimon - true nature). He deemed happiness to be a vulgar idea, stressing that not all desires are worth pursuing as, even though some of them may yield pleasure, they would not produce wellness. Aristotle thought that true happiness is found by leading a virtuous life and doing what is worth doing. He argued that realising human potential is the ultimate human goal. This idea was further developed in history by prominent thinkers, such as Stoics, who stressed the value of self-discipline, and John Locke, who argued that happiness is pursued through prudence….”

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The bottom line is that we, as a society, need to appreciate the diversity of emotional experience. Negative emotions have their place and shouldn’t be avoided (nor should they be dwelt upon).

Researchers engaged in the scientific study of well-being have come to see happiness is a beneficial offshoot of a eudaimonic approach to pursuing a life with meaning, purpose, and mastery.

Instead of pursuing happiness, we should pursue having meaningful relationships, contributing to society, and engaging in self-development. It is through these activities that happiness occurs. Happiness is not an end, or even a means to an end.

The world that lies just beneath you

Take a look around you, take a real good look at everything that surrounds you in life. It’s amazing; everything the world has to offer. Spectacular sights, infinite knowledge, several amazing forms of art, entertainment, people, and a massive array of sports hobbies or activities. I know I’m probably forgetting tons of things, but take a second to really considers these very broad categories I’ve listed. To me it’s overwhelming, theirs so much to do and see and hear that one lifetime isn’t enough. Yet many people do not take advantage of this. Everyday should be looked at as a new day to gain knowledge, experiences, and a broader perspective on anything. Only recently have I really viewed everyday as such, and it is amazing. I think everyone could benefit from a life view of this sort, and I encourage you all to embrace it. Open your mind to the world and it will not disappoint. It truly is fulfilling to digress from the norm and add something different into your life it will make you love life that much more. I’ve taken a hold of this concept and have ambitiously ran with it for awhile now and it already feels life changing. Life changing enough to tell anyone and everyone who is willing to listen to me. I feel that by truly embracing almost everything life hands you and surrounds you with you can achieve this ineffable level of happiness. I can genuinely say that at this point in my life I am happier and feel better than I ever have before. I’m sure this methodology already exist(At least it should), however for me it’s self discovered, all I can say is just explore and uncover all aspects of life that are around you. You will be pleasantly surprised at how many amazing relics lie just under your nose.

EDIT: This is somewhat of a very old methodology referred to as living a ‘eudaimonic’ type lifestyle. Eudaimonic is a Greek work that basically means happiness.


Hello! And wecome to my latest experiment. I am the Philosopheresse.

In other words, I’m am your average bored, out-of-work, 20-something graduate of a Masters of Philosophy Program at a major Canadian University. My specialties are metaphysics, logic, and philosophy of language. I am interested in everything and am an expert in nothing.

However, I firmly believe that philosophy can help people live happy, fulfilled, “eudaimonic” lives more than all the shrinks, advice columnist, and alcohol in the world. Also - it’s a fair bit cheaper! 

So ask me literally anything. Bring me your metaphysical crisis, bring me your late night existential angst, your relationship problems, your homework problems. Bring me your skepticism, your confusion, your solipsism (if you can!). 

I may not have any answers, but maybe I can help point you towards some of the right questions.

useless00 asked:

Adoro il tuo bloog🙈 E vorrei sapere cosa vuol dire il tuo titolo c: Un saluto

aw grazie mille, significa ‘felicità’ (‘eudaimonìa’) in greco c: