Happiness is Subjective

How do we find happiness? Is it something that we gain from other people?

Yoko Inoue shares how she came to understand that happiness is subjective and personal: only a person can define his/her own happiness.

Nick: In your article you shared, I think you'd spoken to Professor Greve and asked him quite a few questions.

Speaking "oh, you know, I need something I need to basically tell me how can I be happy?" And his response was "You have to decide, not me." 

Looking back on that answer, how did you feel? What did you think at the time as well? 

Yoko: At that time, of course, I was a bit disappointed. Then the article finished in number two, so it was kind of good that he didn't give me that kind of question. But looking back, he was absolutely right.

Meik and also professor Greve help me to understand my situation. So what I understood was that Nordic countries are good at reducing the source of unhappiness. For example, people leave the office at 4 pm or 5 pm.

So working parents have no problem picking up kids from kindergarten after work. Also, the price for such an institution is affordable, and everybody is guaranteed a spot at the nursery or kindergarten as long as you wish.

If this is the case in Japan, it would remove so much stress and unhappiness that involves. So that's how I understood, that's what the Nordic countries in society provide.

But when it comes to personal happiness, this foundation doesn't guarantee that everyone can be happy. Because when it comes to my own happiness, that's where the government or society cannot or should not be involved. 

Happiness is personal and subjective, and it's only you who can define it. That's how I understood it, and that's a good start to start my own definition of happiness.