People often count on random positive events to help get them through the day. But close to half of our well-being can be affected by intentional activities, like setting goals, making choices, and developing self-regulation.
So does this mean that good things in your life are not all random? Well, as a matter of fact, yes! As much as you may sometimes complain about your life situation, only a small fraction of your well-being is the result of circumstances. That’s the category where one can place random events like having fire drills that interrupt the history test, late bus drivers who spare one from a meeting, and getting paid early because it is a short month.
Why should you take steps to build your well-being? In the short term you will be happier, and even in the slightly longer term, you will improve your social relationships, work productivity, health and safety behaviors. In the longer term, your well-being will lead to better health overall and greater longevity.
Your well-being predicts not just your success but also the success of your workplace, as well as other organizations and teams you belong to. When more people in your organization are happy, there is lower turnover, and a greater sense of citizenship and loyalty. People will volunteer more, take fewer sick days, and health care costs will be lower. The organization will also show higher engagement and greater creativity.
The results are in: Happy people live longer, have stronger immune systems, less heart disease and inflammation, and fewer infections. In fact, the happier you are, the more likely you are to wear your seatbelt, get and stay happily partnered, and become (and stay) employed. Happier individuals also earn more money, volunteer more, and donate more to charity.
Well-being is the fertilizer for flourishing.