How many of us are happy with where we are in life right now?
It's funny, in general surveys, most people typically report that they are generally happy in their lives – usually somewhere around 60% feel that way with some studies reporting more than 70% that feel they are happy in a general sense.
Yet, when pushed on the issue, most of us do tend to have areas where we feel need improvement – it could be our jobs where unhappiness is rampent, our relationships, our sex life, our kids – these are all areas that people report high levels of dissatisfaction when asked directly.
Here are some of the leading areas we hear people blame for not being happy with your life:
1. Job or career. Results vary wildly by career type. Careers that rate high levels of satisfaction and happiness include clergy, firefighters, teachers and writers while people that report low levels of happiness in their careers include laborers, cashiers, bartenders…
Notice the difference?
How about LIFE PURPOSE?
While many of us grow up with a fantasy of being a firefighter or hear our calling to join the clergy or be a teacher, few of us would dream of being a laborer, bartender or cashier despite the fact that for a small number of us, these careers are both fulfilling and a good match.
It's clear that to be happy with your career, you are best to follow your life purpose.
Just as we outline in Beyond Greatness, the 5-step formula average people use to achieve extraordinary accomplishments and happiness in their lives begins with discovering your inner purpose.
2. Relationships. Much research has uncovered high rates of turmoil and lack of happiness with relationships which more than any other category, tends to filter into a general sense of unhappiness in one's life. In today's society with more and more demand being put on the family unit, it's not surprising that happiness ratings have dipped.
3. Sex life. Surprisingly, most people (men and women) are satsified with their sex life with men consistently rated higher in their satisfaction than women. Results do differ by country and differ according to age as well as stage of relationship. For example, married males tend to be happier than unmarried males. Still, we're looking at between 30-40% of women and men who are not happy with their sex lives – when added to career and relationship challenges, we have a pretty significant number.
4. Social connectedness. While research has hinted at this factor in the past, my guess is that it plays a fairly major role in one's assessment of happiness. Do you have a roll in society? Do you feel you fit in? Do you have a healthy circle of friends, family and supporters or are you a loner? These all have massive implications to how happy you will report you are.
5. Self Confidence. Some studies peg self confidence as the single most important factor in how we rate our level of happiness in our life. While money, financial picture and job are right up there, no doubt our self confidence is a main factor that crosses all other areas of how we rate our life, how we carry ourselves and perhaps even how much we are able to improve or change our lives toward a happier, more fulfilling life.
Indeed, when we conducted our research for the new Beyond Greatness course we discovered that it was most important to address issues of purpose, inner awareness, fear, stress and self confidence to make the most substantial improvements in one's self-assessment of happiness.
The good news was that if you are not happy with your life today, by taking action on the 5 Steps Toward Greatness today – even making tiny, incremental improvements – makes a massive difference in your own happiness and how you are perceived by those around you.
What about you – hit the Comment button below and tell us what reasons impact our feelings of happiness and fulfillment in our lives?