Hello, I’m Darren Brown.
And I think we could rethink our concepts of happiness.
I think we’re sold an idea that
we should be believing in ourselves
and setting our goals and thinking positively.
But the reality is that thinking positively can actually have quite a negative effect.
Optimism is an idea that doesn’t serve us very well when things go badly.
Seeing bad situations in a positive light and looking for the good.
That’s okay. That goes back to the Stoics.
But when we’re feeling like we failed,
that’s the problem.
and the problem with optimism is that
it just tells us if things don’t go right that we’ve failed,
如果事情不顺 它只是告诉我们 我们失败了
that we haven’t believed in ourselves enough.
And we should blame ourselves because there’s nowhere else to go
我们应该责怪自己 因为除此之外 别无他法
and that’s fundamentally where it’s wrong.
You need a system that works for you when things aren’t going well.
That’s the real test of whether something holds up or not.
There was a psychologist called Daniel Kahneman
who came up with this idea of the experiencing self
and the remembering self,
like two sort of cells at work within us.
The idea is that,
for example, if you are given a choice between
going on our rollercoaster and having a fun afternoon at a theme park
versus looking after a sick relative,
which one is gonna make you happier?
The chances are you’d think what I’ll do I’m gonna go on the theme park.
So your experiencing self is being catered to by the experiences of,
you know, happiness and excitement.
But your remembering self which is the other part of you
will look back on the experience looking after your sick relative
actually as a more meaningful experience.
So the chances are you will take with you
more of a sense of happiness and satisfaction from doing that.
So we have a terrible understanding of what actually fulfills us.
I think of an interesting thought experiment which is given by a stoic,
a modern stoic called William Irvin,
is imagine that you woke up one day and everybody had disappeared from the world
so there were still buildings and cars and everything,
but there were no people, everyone had gone, it’s just you.
但是没有人 都消失了 只剩下你
What changes in terms of
the sort of things you require for yourself.
You wouldn’t bother having a big, great big house to go in
and even barely you could live in anyhouse.
You could just go and you know walk in and live wherever you like.
You’d probably find somewhere that’s just comfortable and practical.
You obviously wouldn’t bother with fancy clothes,
you wouldn’t bother with so many things.
And then, when you’ve really followed that thought through,
it’s amazing how much we acquire and want
only to impress other people
even if we don’t feel without sort of a person.
So rather than just wanting things that we don’t have
which probably not going to be very good for us anyway,
shifting our desires so we want the things that we already have.
Stoicism was born at a time of strife.
There’s lots of war,
lots of reasons why you’d want to hang on to a feeling of tranquility.
So, what they said which is such phenomenally good advice is
there are things in your life that you’re in control of,
and there are things in your life you’re not in control of.
The only thing you are in control of,
they said, and this is true,
are your thoughts and your actions. That’s it.
Everything else and what other people do, and what they think of you,
and what goes on in their lives and
how well other people do their jobs or do the things you work,
whatever, everything else you have no control over.
And you can actually decide that everything on that side of the line is fine.
I find myself doing this a lot
when something’s really bothering and frustrating me.
I just think I know which side of the line is it on.
Is it my thoughts and actions or is it something out there?
But it has to be a real thought
what if it was fine and has to drip in
and really kind of drip into the soul and make sense.
You have to feel it. It’s no good just saying it.
I was fine, it’s fine. That doesn’t have any effect.
只是说我很好 很好 没有任何效果
It has to be a real thing and it’s a very helpful thought.
Hello, I’m Darren Brown.