Friday, December 31, 2004

Okay, real quick-like, here's the misery threshhold hypothesis:

People remain mostly at the same level of happiness regardless of circumstances, unless those circumstances include something that's really disastrous or otherwise misery-causing. (Including so little money you can't afford food and warm housing, life-threatening illnesses, death and divorce, etc.)

So, in the absence of particular trauma (or above the misery threshhold, as I put it), we are basically as happy as we are ever going to be, and no lottery-winning or fabulous-babe-having or whatever will change that for more than a few months. (Research backs me up on this.)


argotnaut said...

Yeah -- I've heard about this -- and alas, it seems true. Also read, though, that happy events can temporarily raise it, but one returns to baseline in short order.

argotnaut said...

Oh wait -- duh -- yes, you already mentioned the temporary-raising part.

liz said...

So that's what SamuraiChick and I expressed during our phone conversation: "I am above the misery threshhold, And you?"

From the same duo who brought you Transition-Free Conversation, because "segues are for slow people!"

(Although now that there is such a thing as a Segway, this has become an unintended double-entendre.)