If you have five hundred and some dollars to spare this year, you might want to put aside your coupons and advertising supplements from the Sunday newspaper and invest your money in a happiness conference instead.
The 'happiness' industry is a growing one and it's growing fast. We have tended to concentrate on depression and it's various treatments in the past two decades and an emerging trend is to focus on happiness and it's 'treatments' instead.
San Francisco just hosted the first "Happiness and its Causes" conference which brought together scientists, therapists and others in the health industry who want to get a handle on happiness. What makes us happy? How do we continue and increase a sense of happiness, and what's behind happiness anyway?
Studies confirm that money does not equal happiness (I'm trying not to yell 'but it doesn't hurt!' as I write this). Various groups of indigenous tribes have been seen to be just as happy as the extremely wealthy.
But apparently there are methods to achieving happiness. The science of behavioral neurogenetics is researching the genetic component to depression and happiness. And group therapy, social interaction, support groups and more divine endeavors are all considered key factors in achieving happiness.
Entrepreneurs in Happiness are springing up, like entrepreneurs in multi-level marketing and internet business did in the 80s and 90s. Like any business, they have step-by-step programs and offer on-line classes, using techniques from the scientific to the spiritual.
TV stars like Tyra Banks and Oprah are also hosting shows dedicated to the pursuit of happiness.
And don't forget, it's a constitutional right!
Are classes, courses and conferences in happiness a bit gimmicky to you or do they have real merit? Would you attend one? What have you done to achieve happiness?
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