Hedonic Adaptation: Why Longterm Happiness Is So ElusivePosted by Lukas Havranek
Do you often find yourself fulfilling your dream and getting disappointed in the end? Are you quickly getting bored after you buy something you have wanted to acquire? Or maybe you just wished that the good feeling lasted longer?
The thing is we are terrible at predicting what will make us happy. One of the problems causing this is called hedonic adaptation - standing for our tendency to consider anything new as a standard quickly and therefore losing the joy coming out of it. If not recognized and tamed it may result in increasingly expensive purchases in desperate attempt to get more pleasure - hedonic treadmill. It is similar to junkies trying to get the same level of satisfaction by increasing doses of drugs that they are getting used to.
If we understand hedonic adaptation that reduces the excitement of reaching one's goals or making purchases, we can focus on more important stuff that will give us fulfillment - relationships, meaningful work or developing our strengths. Do not get caught up in the hedonic treadmill, work on things that matter.