To Be Happy, Pursue Unhappiness 

The pursuit of stature, material bounty — and ultimately happiness itself — is a fool’s errand. The more we achieve, the more we require to sustain our new levels of satisfaction. Which is all very well. But what on earth do you live for, if not happiness?Your commitments are the true road to salvation and the solution to an otherwise absurd existence. They didn’t always give pleasure; they may even “oppose and conflict with freedom or happiness. But in many ways, that was the point: The more we sacrifice for something, the more value we assign to it. Happiness involves the enthusiastic and unambivalent acceptance of activities or relationships that are not the best that might possibly be obtained. A lot of psychology operates on this rational notion that, Well, I do the thing that works best for me. But ultimately happiness is not what maintains us. What really maintains us is unhappiness.

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