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Don't Worry, Be Happy!

Don”t Worry, Be Happy! Did you know that achieving goals can make you happy?

Not all goals are created equal. Goals can add meaning to our lives in many ways. Achieving a goal can enhance our self-esteem, enrich our lives, help us feel closer to each other, feed our inner needs and even make us happy.

Relatedness, competence and autonomy are three qualities that all human being seek.

Everyone wants to relate to and be connected to others, to be competent in what they do and have the ability to take care of themselves, and to be autonomous and make their own choices.

Setting intrinsic goals help us feel related, competent and autonomous. Intrinsic goals come from our own personal values and interests. We pursue intrinsic goals because the process of achieving these goals make us feel good. We receive more satisfaction and are more engaged in the process of achieving goals of our own choosing and ones that reflect our personal values. We savor these accomplishments because they mean something special to us.

Extrinsic goals come from outside of us. They may be goals that are set for us by parents, teachers, or our boss at work. They may not reflect our values, desires, or needs. Extrinsic goals do not have the same motivation to us as intrinsic goals.

When you set goals for yourself, choose goals that fulfill your basic need for relatedness, competence and autonomy. Set goals for yourself  that strength your relationships with others, provide some kind of personal growth, are are interesting to you because they reflect your own personal passion. Avoid goals that are about obtaining external validation from others as they will lessen your sense of self-worth and happiness.

So “Don’t Worry, Be Happy!” and focus on intrinsic goals that reflect your sense of connectedness, competence and choice. Choosing intrinsic goals leads to greater motivation and creativity as well as enhancing our grit and persistence and ultimately, our happiness.

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