The other day in my Transpersonal Coaching class, we were discussing a 'Blue Print for Happiness. ' This term is coined by a pioneer in Positive Psychology, Martin Seligman. Martin Seligman was able to offer not only a systematic approach but a scientific method of exploration for why people are happy. Seligman piggybacked on the initial research of Abraham Maslow and his hierarchy of needs.
So what are the three dimensions of a 'happy' life as defined by Seligman? He identified that happiness can be cultivated in: The Pleasant Life, The Good Life, and The Meaningful Life. Let's take a look at what these three dimensions entail.
- The Pleasant Life- This phase is marked by the superficial pleasures of life. What essentially feels good in the moment. We can run out of meaning real quick if this is the only life we pursue. We oftentimes can remain pleasantly stuck at this stage or we can progress onward to the 'Good Life.'
- The Good Life- This dimension is achieved through utilizing our strengths and then employing them to creatively enhance our lives.
- The Meaningful Life- This dimension is marked with an awareness that our 'pleasurable needs' are met, we are operating from our 'strengths', and lastly we are contributing to the happiness of the planet. We are using our gifts in service of others. In this dimension, we are determining our own meaning and making it an authentic expression of who we are.
So why you may ask are these three blueprints so important? As my teacher Michael shared with our class, these three areas assist us as we live deeper and richer lives. For example, just think if you lived only in the Pleasant Life, you would be happy in the moment only, feeling yourself living in the superficial levels of life. After a while you might become tired of amassing 'things' and find yourself searching for something deeper. If we only lived in the Good Life, we might recognize our strengths and operate from them, but perhaps feel saddened that we don't have anyone else to share our passions with. And that brings us to the Meaningful Life- a healthy balance of the first two.
In order to not get burned out in our jobs, our passions, our relationships, etc., we need to be operating out of all three areas. A healthy balance of all three can only add to the significance of our life experience.
Today and everyday I am grateful for the new awarenesses that cause me to live a more awake and aware life. I think our world can benefit from Seligman's Blue Print for Happiness. Enjoy the journey my friends!
May You Sweetly SeeK:)