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Happy people focus on others

January 22, 2014

Here’s a great idea…
In his book, Authentic Happiness, Martin E.P. Seligman says,
“Happy people were more likely to demonstrate more empathy and are willing to donate more money to others in need. When we are happy, we are less self-focused. Looking out for number one is more characteristic of sadness than of well-being” (pg. 43).

In other words…
Who do we care about more: ourselves or others? When we are happy, we want to serve others and share our happiness with them. When we are unhappy, we shut down. We become defensive and focused primarily on our own needs.

Here’s how you can use this idea to have a better life…
Find someone to help today. It can be as simple as giving your waitress an extra tip or taking out your neighbor’s trash. When you help other people, you will find greater joy in your own life.

To Find Out More…
about personal well-being, check out Getting Our Hearts Right or The Personal Journey programs at, follow us at or contact your local county Extension agent. You may also enjoy reading Authentic Happiness.

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