What makes you happy?

So – what makes you happy?

Your first latte of the morning, snuggling with your honey on the couch after a long day, or giving a gift to a friend? All of these I suspect. I read recently that it’s been scientifically proven that giving to others makes you happier than spending on yourself. There were brain scans done for this study showing that doing generous deeds stimulates parts of the brain and produces feel-good chemicals. I am sure there is tons more research regarding why human beings are wired this way, like “we’re social animals” or “we get rewarded for supporting positive social interactions”.

Researchers at Harvard did a study analyzing data on the spending habits of more than 200,000 people in 136 countries from a wide range of socioeconomic backgrounds. They found that spending money on others made people universally happier than spending it on themselves. How about that?

I believe that all of our lives are better, more rewarding, and more fulfilling when everyone in our community has what they need in life, not only to survive but to live a good quality of life. When others have what they need, everyone is better off. And not just because the dopamine kicked in.

So, thanks to all of you who have given so generously to The Arc of King County this month. With all of those feel-good chemicals flowing, our community must have been feeling pretty darn good in August!

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